WorldWideScience

Sample records for plant herbivore carnivorous

  1. Lima bean leaves exposed to herbivore-induced conspecific plant volatiles attract herbivores in addition to carnivores

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Horiuchi, J.I.; Arimura, G.I.; Ozawa, R.; Shimoda, T.; Dicke, M.; Takabayashi, J.; Nishioka, T.

    2003-01-01

    We tested the response of the herbivorous mite Tetranychus urticae to uninfested lima bean leaves exposed to herbivore-induced conspecific plant volatiles by using a Y-tube olfactometer. First, we confirmed that exposed uninfested leaves next to infested leaves were more attractive to carnivorous

  2. Exposure of Lima bean leaves to volatiles from herbivore-induced conspecific plants results in emission of carnivore attractants: active or passive process?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Choh, Y.; Shimoda, T.; Ozawa, R.; Dicke, M.; Takabayashi, J.

    2004-01-01

    There is increasing evidence that volatiles emitted by herbivore-damaged plants can cause responses in downwind undamaged neighboring plants, such as the attraction of carnivorous enemies of herbivores. One of the open questions is whether this involves an active (production of volatiles) or passive

  3. Within-population isotopic niche variability in savanna mammals: disparity between carnivores and herbivores

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daryl eCodron

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Large mammal ecosystems have relatively simple food webs, usually comprising three – and sometimes only two – trophic links. Since many syntopic species from the same trophic level therefore share resources, dietary niche partitioning features prominently within these systems. In African and other subtropical savannas, stable carbon isotopes readily distinguish between herbivore species for which foliage and other parts of dicot plants (13C-depleted C3 vegetation are the primary resource (browsers and those for which grasses (13C-enriched C4 vegetation are staples (grazers. Similarly, carbon isotopes distinguish between carnivore diets that may be richer in either browser, grazer, or intermediate-feeding prey. Here, we investigate levels of carbon and nitrogen isotopic niche variation and niche partitioning within populations (or species of carnivores and herbivores from South African savannas. We emphasize predictable differences in within-population trends across trophic levels: we expect that herbivore populations, which require more foraging effort due to higher intake requirements, are far less likely to display within-population resource partitioning than carnivore populations. Our results reveal generally narrower isotopic niche breadths in herbivore than carnivore populations, but more importantly we find lower levels of isotopic differentiation across individuals within herbivore species. While these results offer some support for our general hypothesis, the current paucity of isotopic data for African carnivores limits our ability to test the complete set of predictions arising from our hypothesis. Nevertheless, given the different ecological and ecophysiological constraints to foraging behaviour within each trophic level, comparisons across carnivores and herbivores, which are possible within such simplified foodwebs, make these systems ideal for developing a process-based understanding of conditions underlying the evolution of

  4. Identification of volatiles that are used in discrimination between plants infested with prey or nonprey herbivores by a predatory mite

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Boer, de J.G.; Posthumus, M.A.; Dicke, M.

    2004-01-01

    Carnivorous arthropods can use herbivore-induced plant volatiles to locate their herbivorous prey. In the field, carnivores are confronted with information from plants infested with herbivores that may differ in their suitability as prey. Discrimination by the predatory mite Phytoseiulus persimilis

  5. Gut transport characteristics in herbivorous and carnivorous serrasalmid fish from ion-poor Rio Negro water.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pelster, Bernd; Wood, Chris M; Speers-Roesch, Ben; Driedzic, William R; Almeida-Val, Vera; Val, Adalberto

    2015-02-01

    species. Thus, metabolic activity of gut tissue did not significantly influence the net ammonia transfer. Due to the much higher gut to fork length ratio, the overall transport capacity of the gut of the herbivorous Pacu by far exceeded the transport capacity of their carnivorous and omnivorous relatives, thus compensating for the lower digestibility and the low Na(+), Cl(-), and N-content of the plant diet. Accordingly, in order to cope with the more difficult digestible plant material and the very low nitrogen content of plants, herbivorous fish have not evolved more effective area-specific transport capacities, but rather have increased the length of the gut.

  6. Contrasting patterns of herbivore and predator pressure on invasive and native plants

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Engelkes, T.; Wouters, B.; Bezemer, T.M.; Harvey, J.A.; Putten, van der W.H.

    2012-01-01

    Invasive non-native plant species often harbor fewer herbivorous insects than related native plant species. However, little is known about how herbivorous insects on non-native plants are exposed to carnivorous insects, and even less is known on plants that have recently expanded their ranges within

  7. Herbivore-induced plant volatiles and tritrophic interactions across spatial scales

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Aartsma, Y.S.Y.; Bianchi, F.J.J.A.; Werf, van der W.; Poelman, E.H.; Dicke, M.

    2017-01-01

    Herbivore-induced plant volatiles (HIPVs) are an important cue used in herbivore location by carnivorous arthropods such as parasitoids. The effects of plant volatiles on parasitoids have been well characterised at small spatial scales, but little research has been done on their effects at larger

  8. Contrasting patterns of herbivore and predator pressure on invasive and native plants

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Engelkes, T.; Wouters, B.; Bezemer, T.M.; Harvey, J.A.; Van der Putten, W.H.

    2012-01-01

    Invasive non-nativeplant species often harbor fewer herbivorous insects than related nativeplant species. However, little is known about how herbivorous insects on non-nativeplants are exposed to carnivorous insects, and even less is known on plants that have recently expanded their ranges within

  9. Plant defense against insect herbivores

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fürstenberg-Hägg, Joel; Zagrobelny, Mika; Bak, Søren

    2013-01-01

    , defense compounds. These bioactive specialized plant defense compounds may repel or intoxicate insects, while defense proteins often interfere with their digestion. Volatiles are released upon herbivory to repel herbivores, attract predators or for communication between leaves or plants, and to induce......Plants have been interacting with insects for several hundred million years, leading to complex defense approaches against various insect feeding strategies. Some defenses are constitutive while others are induced, although the insecticidal defense compound or protein classes are often similar...... defense responses. Plants also apply morphological features like waxes, trichomes and latices to make the feeding more difficult for the insects. Extrafloral nectar, food bodies and nesting or refuge sites are produced to accommodate and feed the predators of the herbivores. Meanwhile, herbivorous insects...

  10. Plants are not sitting ducks waiting for herbivores to eat them.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lev-Yadun, Simcha

    2016-05-03

    There is a common attitude toward plants, accordingly, plants are waiting around to be found and eaten by herbivores. This common approach toward plants is a great underestimation of the huge and variable arsenal of defensive plant strategies. Plants do everything evolution has allowed them to do in order not to be eaten. Therefore, plants are not sitting ducks and many plants outsmart and even exploit many invertebrate and vertebrate herbivores and carnivores for pollination and for seed dispersal, and even carnivores and parasitoids for defense.

  11. Comparison of carnivore, omnivore, and herbivore mammalian genomes with a new leopard assembly

    OpenAIRE

    Kim, Soonok; Cho, Yun Sung; Kim, Hak-Min; Chung, Oksung; Kim, Hyunho; Jho, Sungwoong; Seomun, Hong; Kim, Jeongho; Bang, Woo Young; Kim, Changmu; An, Junghwa; Bae, Chang Hwan; Bhak, Youngjune; Jeon, Sungwon; Yoon, Hyejun

    2016-01-01

    Background: There are three main dietary groups in mammals: carnivores, omnivores, and herbivores. Currently, there is limited comparative genomics insight into the evolution of dietary specializations in mammals. Due to recent advances in sequencing technologies, we were able to perform in-depth whole genome analyses of representatives of these three dietary groups. Results: We investigated the evolution of carnivory by comparing 18 representative genomes from across Mammalia with carnivorou...

  12. Comparison of carnivore, omnivore, and herbivore mammalian genomes with a new leopard assembly.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Soonok; Cho, Yun Sung; Kim, Hak-Min; Chung, Oksung; Kim, Hyunho; Jho, Sungwoong; Seomun, Hong; Kim, Jeongho; Bang, Woo Young; Kim, Changmu; An, Junghwa; Bae, Chang Hwan; Bhak, Youngjune; Jeon, Sungwon; Yoon, Hyejun; Kim, Yumi; Jun, JeHoon; Lee, HyeJin; Cho, Suan; Uphyrkina, Olga; Kostyria, Aleksey; Goodrich, John; Miquelle, Dale; Roelke, Melody; Lewis, John; Yurchenko, Andrey; Bankevich, Anton; Cho, Juok; Lee, Semin; Edwards, Jeremy S; Weber, Jessica A; Cook, Jo; Kim, Sangsoo; Lee, Hang; Manica, Andrea; Lee, Ilbeum; O'Brien, Stephen J; Bhak, Jong; Yeo, Joo-Hong

    2016-10-11

    There are three main dietary groups in mammals: carnivores, omnivores, and herbivores. Currently, there is limited comparative genomics insight into the evolution of dietary specializations in mammals. Due to recent advances in sequencing technologies, we were able to perform in-depth whole genome analyses of representatives of these three dietary groups. We investigated the evolution of carnivory by comparing 18 representative genomes from across Mammalia with carnivorous, omnivorous, and herbivorous dietary specializations, focusing on Felidae (domestic cat, tiger, lion, cheetah, and leopard), Hominidae, and Bovidae genomes. We generated a new high-quality leopard genome assembly, as well as two wild Amur leopard whole genomes. In addition to a clear contraction in gene families for starch and sucrose metabolism, the carnivore genomes showed evidence of shared evolutionary adaptations in genes associated with diet, muscle strength, agility, and other traits responsible for successful hunting and meat consumption. Additionally, an analysis of highly conserved regions at the family level revealed molecular signatures of dietary adaptation in each of Felidae, Hominidae, and Bovidae. However, unlike carnivores, omnivores and herbivores showed fewer shared adaptive signatures, indicating that carnivores are under strong selective pressure related to diet. Finally, felids showed recent reductions in genetic diversity associated with decreased population sizes, which may be due to the inflexible nature of their strict diet, highlighting their vulnerability and critical conservation status. Our study provides a large-scale family level comparative genomic analysis to address genomic changes associated with dietary specialization. Our genomic analyses also provide useful resources for diet-related genetic and health research.

  13. Can alien plants support generalist insect herbivores?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Douglas Tallamy; Meg Ballard; Vincent D' Amico

    2009-01-01

    Rearing experiments were conducted to address two questions relevant to understanding how generalist lepidopteran herbivores interact with alien plants. We reared 10 yellow-striped armyworms (Spodoptera ornithogalli),...

  14. Mathematical models for plant-herbivore interactions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feng, Zhilan; DeAngelis, Donald L.

    2017-01-01

    Mathematical Models of Plant-Herbivore Interactions addresses mathematical models in the study of practical questions in ecology, particularly factors that affect herbivory, including plant defense, herbivore natural enemies, and adaptive herbivory, as well as the effects of these on plant community dynamics. The result of extensive research on the use of mathematical modeling to investigate the effects of plant defenses on plant-herbivore dynamics, this book describes a toxin-determined functional response model (TDFRM) that helps explains field observations of these interactions. This book is intended for graduate students and researchers interested in mathematical biology and ecology.

  15. Variation in plant defense suppresses herbivore performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pearse, Ian; Paul, Ryan; Ode, Paul J.

    2018-01-01

    Defensive variability of crops and natural systems can alter herbivore communities and reduce herbivory. However, it is still unknown how defense variability translates into herbivore suppression. Nonlinear averaging and constraints in physiological tracking (also more generally called time-dependent effects) are the two mechanisms by which defense variability might impact herbivores. We conducted a set of experiments manipulating the mean and variability of a plant defense, showing that defense variability does suppress herbivore performance and that it does so through physiological tracking effects that cannot be explained by nonlinear averaging. While nonlinear averaging predicted higher or the same herbivore performance on a variable defense than on an invariable defense, we show that variability actually decreased herbivore performance and population growth rate. Defense variability reduces herbivore performance in a way that is more than the average of its parts. This is consistent with constraints in physiological matching of detoxification systems for herbivores experiencing variable toxin levels in their diet and represents a more generalizable way of understanding the impacts of variability on herbivory. Increasing defense variability in croplands at a scale encountered by individual herbivores can suppress herbivory, even if that is not anticipated by nonlinear averaging.

  16. Natal Host Plants Can Alter Herbivore Competition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pan, Huipeng; Preisser, Evan L; Su, Qi; Jiao, Xiaoguo; Xie, Wen; Wang, Shaoli; Wu, Qingjun; Zhang, Youjun

    2016-01-01

    Interspecific competition between herbivores is widely recognized as an important determinant of community structure. Although researchers have identified a number of factors capable of altering competitive interactions, few studies have addressed the influence of neighboring plant species. If adaptation to/ epigenetic effects of an herbivore's natal host plant alter its performance on other host plants, then interspecific herbivore interactions may play out differently in heterogeneous and homogenous plant communities. We tested wether the natal host plant of a whitefly population affected interactions between the Middle-east Asia Minor 1 (MEAM1) and Mediterranean (MED) cryptic species of the whitefly Bemisia tabaci by rearing the offspring of a cabbage-derived MEAM1 population and a poinsettia-derived MED population together on three different host plants: cotton, poinsettia, and cabbage. We found that MED dominated on poinsettia and that MEAM1 dominated on cabbage, results consistent with previous research. MED also dominated when reared with MEAM1 on cotton, however, a result at odds with multiple otherwise-similar studies that reared both species on the same natal plant. Our work provides evidence that natal plants affect competitive interactions on another plant species, and highlights the potential importance of neighboring plant species on herbivore community composition in agricultral systems.

  17. Overcoming DNA extraction problems from carnivorous plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fleischmann, Andreas

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available We tested previously published protocols for DNA isolation from plants with high contents of polyphenols and polysaccharides for several taxa of carnivorous plants. However, we did not get satisfying results with fresh or silica dried leaf tissue obtained from field collected or greenhouse grown plants, nor from herbarium specimens. Therefore, we have developed a simple modified protocol of the commercially available Macherey- Nagel NucleoSpin® Plant kit for rapid, effective and reproducible isolation of high quality genomic DNA suitable for PCR reactions. DNA extraction can be conducted from both fresh and dried leaf tissue of various carnivorous plant taxa, irrespective of high contents of polysaccharides, phenolic compounds and other secondary plant metabolites that interfere with DNA isolation and amplification.

    Probamos algunos protocolos publicados previamente para el aislamiento del ADN de plantas con alto contenido de polifenoles y polisacáridos para varios táxones de plantas carnívoras. Sin embargo, no conseguimos muy buenos resultados ni con tejidos de hojas frescas, ni con tejidos de hojas secadas en gel de sílice obtenidas de plantas colectadas en el campo o cultivadas en los invernaderos, ni de especímenes de herbario. Por lo tanto, hemos desarrollado un protocolo sencillo, modificado del Macherey- Nagel NucleoSpin® Plant kit disponible en el mercado para el aislamiento rápido, eficaz y reproducible de ADN genómico de alta calidad conveniente para la reacción en cadena de la polimerasa. La extracción del ADN se puede realizar en tejidos de hojas frescas o secas de varios táxones de plantas carnívoras, sin importar el grado de contenido de polisacáridos, compuestos fenólicos u otros metabolitos secundarios que interfieren con el aislamiento y la amplificación del ADN.

  18. Experimental infection of plants with an herbivore-associated bacterial endosymbiont influences herbivore host selection behavior.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas Seth Davis

    Full Text Available Although bacterial endosymbioses are common among phloeophagous herbivores, little is known regarding the effects of symbionts on herbivore host selection and population dynamics. We tested the hypothesis that plant selection and reproductive performance by a phloem-feeding herbivore (potato psyllid, Bactericera cockerelli is mediated by infection of plants with a bacterial endosymbiont. We controlled for the effects of herbivory and endosymbiont infection by exposing potato plants (Solanum tuberosum to psyllids infected with "Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum" or to uninfected psyllids. We used these treatments as a basis to experimentally test plant volatile emissions, herbivore settling and oviposition preferences, and herbivore population growth. Three important findings emerged: (1 plant volatile profiles differed with respect to both herbivory and herbivory plus endosymbiont infection when compared to undamaged control plants; (2 herbivores initially settled on plants exposed to endosymbiont-infected psyllids but later defected and oviposited primarily on plants exposed only to uninfected psyllids; and (3 plant infection status had little effect on herbivore reproduction, though plant flowering was associated with a 39% reduction in herbivore density on average. Our experiments support the hypothesis that plant infection with endosymbionts alters plant volatile profiles, and infected plants initially recruited herbivores but later repelled them. Also, our findings suggest that the endosymbiont may not place negative selection pressure on its host herbivore in this system, but plant flowering phenology appears correlated with psyllid population performance.

  19. Early season herbivore differentially affects plant defence responses to subsequently colonizing herbivores and their abundance in the field

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Poelman, E.H.; Broekgaarden, C.; Loon, van J.J.A.; Dicke, M.

    2008-01-01

    Induction of plant defences by early season herbivores can mediate interspecific herbivore competition. We have investigated plant-mediated competition between three herbivorous insects through studies at different levels of biological integration. We have addressed (i) gene expression; (ii) insect

  20. Birds exploit herbivore-induced plant volatiles to locate herbivorous prey

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Amo, L.; Jansen, J.J.; Dam, van N.M.; Dicke, M.; Visser, M.E.

    2013-01-01

    Arthropod herbivory induces plant volatiles that can be used by natural enemies of the herbivores to find their prey. This has been studied mainly for arthropods that prey upon or parasitise herbivorous arthropods but rarely for insectivorous birds, one of the main groups of predators of herbivorous

  1. Rates and modes of body size evolution in early carnivores and herbivores: a case study from Captorhinidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Neil Brocklehurst

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Body size is an extremely important characteristic, impacting on a variety of ecological and life-history traits. It is therefore important to understand the factors which may affect its evolution, and diet has attracted much interest in this context. A recent study which examined the evolution of the earliest terrestrial herbivores in the Late Carboniferous and Early Permian concluded that in the four herbivorous clades examined there was a trend towards increased body size, and that this increase was more substantial than that observed in closely related carnivorous clades. However, this hypothesis was not based on quantitative examination, and phylogenetic comparative methods provide a more robust means of testing such hypotheses. Here, the evolution of body size within different dietary regimes is examined in Captorhinidae, the most diverse and longest lived of these earliest high fibre herbivores. Evolutionary models were fit to their phylogeny to test for variation in rate and mode of evolution between the carnivorous and herbivorous members of this clade, and an analysis of rate variation throughout the tree was carried out. Estimates of ancestral body sizes were calculated in order to compare the rates and direction of evolution of lineages with different dietary regimes. Support for the idea that the high fibre herbivores within captorhinids are being drawn to a higher adaptive peak in body size than the carnivorous members of this clade is weak. A shift in rates of body size evolution is identified, but this does not coincide with the evolution of high-fibre herbivory, instead occurring earlier in time and at a more basal node. Herbivorous lineages which show an increase in size are not found to evolve at a faster rate than those which show a decrease; in fact, it is those which experience a size decrease which evolve at higher rates. It is possible the shift in rates of evolution is related to the improved food processing ability of

  2. Cytochemical and ultrastructural aspects of aquatic carnivorous plant turions

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Plachno, B.J.; Adamec, Lubomír; Kozieradzka-Kiszkurno, M.; Świątek, P.; Kamińska, I.

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 251, č. 6 (2014), s. 1449-1454 ISSN 0033-183X Institutional support: RVO:67985939 Keywords : aquatic carnivorous plants * winter buds * storage functions Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 2.651, year: 2014

  3. Herbivore-induced volatile production by Arabidopsis thaliana leads to attraction of the parasitoid Cotesia rubecula: chemical, behavioral, and gene-expression analysis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Poecke, R.M.P.; Posthumus, M.A.; Dicke, M.

    2001-01-01

    Many plant species defend themselves against herbivorous insects indirectly by producing volatiles in response to herbivory. These volatiles attract carnivorous enemies of the herbivores. Research on the model plant Arabidopsis thaliana (L.) Heynh. has contributed considerably to the unraveling of

  4. Risk assessment of metals and organic pollutants for herbivorous and carnivorous small mammal food chains in a polluted floodplain (Biesbosch, The Netherlands)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hamers, T.H.M.; Berg, van den J.H.J.; Gestel, van C.A.M.; Schooten, van F.J.; Murk, A.J.

    2006-01-01

    A risk assessment was made for a carnivorous and a herbivorous food chain in a heavily polluted natural estuary (Biesbosch), by determining the most critical pollutants and the food chain most at risk. Exposure of food chains to metals, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), and polychlorinated

  5. Risk assessment of metals and organic pollutants for herbivorous and carnivorous small mammal food chains in a polluted floodplain (Biesbosch, The Netherlands)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hamers, Timo; Berg, Johannes H.J. van den; Gestel, Cornelis A.M. van; Schooten, Frederik-Jan van; Murk, Albertinka J.

    2006-01-01

    A risk assessment was made for a carnivorous and a herbivorous food chain in a heavily polluted natural estuary (Biesbosch), by determining the most critical pollutants and the food chain most at risk. Exposure of food chains to metals, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) was assessed by analyzing dietary concentrations, internal concentrations, and biomarkers of exposure. Common shrew (Sorex araneus) and bank vole (Clethrionomys glareolus) were selected as representative small mammal species for the carnivorous and herbivorous food chain, respectively, and earthworms (Lumbricus rubellus) and snails (Cepaea nemoralis) as representative prey species for the carnivorous food chain. Metals contributed most to the total risk for small mammals and earthworms. PCBs, but not PAHs, contributed to the overall risk for S. araneus at regularly flooded locations. The carnivorous food chain appeared most at risk given the higher exposure levels and bioaccumulating potency found for contaminants in S. araneus. - In polluted floodplain areas, dietary exposure to metals poses a larger risk for small mammals in a carnivorous than in a herbivorous food chain

  6. Phytohormone mediation of interactions between herbivores and plant pathogens

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lazebnik, J.; Frago, E.; Dicke, M.; Loon, van J.J.A.

    2014-01-01

    Induced plant defenses against either pathogens or herbivore attackers are regulated by phytohormones. These phytohormones are increasingly recognized as important mediators of interactions between organisms associated with plants. In this review, we discuss the role of plant defense hormones in

  7. Insect herbivores should follow plants escaping their relatives

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Yguel, B.; Bailey, R.I.; Villemant, C.; Brault, A.; Jactel, H.; Prinzing, A.

    2014-01-01

    Neighboring plants within a local community may be separated by many millions of years of evolutionary history, potentially reducing enemy pressure by insect herbivores. However, it is not known how the evolutionary isolation of a plant affects the fitness of an insect herbivore living on such a

  8. A conserved pattern in plant-mediated interactions between herbivores

    OpenAIRE

    Lu Jing; Robert Christelle A. M.; Lou Yonggen; Erb Matthias

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Plant?mediated interactions between herbivores are important determinants of community structure and plant performance in natural and agricultural systems. Current research suggests that the outcome of the interactions is determined by herbivore and plant identity, which may result in stochastic patterns that impede adaptive evolution and agricultural exploitation. However, few studies have systemically investigated specificity versus general patterns in a given plant system by varyi...

  9. Avoidance and tolerance to avian herbivores in aquatic plants

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hidding, A.

    2009-01-01

    Tolerance and avoidance are the two contrasting strategies that plants may adopt to cope with herbivores. Tolerance traits define the degree to which communities remain unaffected by herbivory. Trade-offs between herbivore avoidance and competitive strength and between avoidance and colonization

  10. Interactions between aboveground herbivores and the mycorrhizal mutualists of plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gehring, C A; Whitham, T G

    1994-07-01

    Plant growth, reproduction and survival can be affected both by mycorrhizal fungi and aboveground herbivores, but few studies have examined the interactive effects of these factors on plants. Most of the available data suggest that severe herbivory reduces root colonization by vesicular-arbuscular and ectomycorrhizal fungi. However, the reverse interaction has also been documented - mycorrhizal fungi deter herbivores and interact with fungal endophytes to influence herbivory. Although consistent patterns and mechanistic explanations are yet to emerge, it is likely that aboveground herbivore-mycorrhiza interactions have important implications for plant populations and communities. Copyright © 1994. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  11. Herbivore-induced blueberry volatiles and intra-plant signaling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodriguez-Saona, Cesar R

    2011-12-18

    Herbivore-induced plant volatiles (HIPVs) are commonly emitted from plants after herbivore attack. These HIPVs are mainly regulated by the defensive plant hormone jasmonic acid (JA) and its volatile derivative methyl jasmonate (MeJA). Over the past 3 decades researchers have documented that HIPVs can repel or attract herbivores, attract the natural enemies of herbivores, and in some cases they can induce or prime plant defenses prior to herbivore attack. In a recent paper, I reported that feeding by gypsy moth caterpillars, exogenous MeJA application, and mechanical damage induce the emissions of volatiles from blueberry plants, albeit differently. In addition, blueberry branches respond to HIPVs emitted from neighboring branches of the same plant by increasing the levels of JA and resistance to herbivores (i.e., direct plant defenses), and by priming volatile emissions (i.e., indirect plant defenses). Similar findings have been reported recently for sagebrush, poplar, and lima beans. Here, I describe a push-pull method for collecting blueberry volatiles induced by herbivore (gypsy moth) feeding, exogenous MeJA application, and mechanical damage. The volatile collection unit consists of a 4 L volatile collection chamber, a 2-piece guillotine, an air delivery system that purifies incoming air, and a vacuum system connected to a trap filled with Super-Q adsorbent to collect volatiles. Volatiles collected in Super-Q traps are eluted with dichloromethane and then separated and quantified using Gas Chromatography (GC). This volatile collection method was used in my study to investigate the volatile response of undamaged branches to exposure to volatiles from herbivore-damaged branches within blueberry plants. These methods are described here. Briefly, undamaged blueberry branches are exposed to HIPVs from neighboring branches within the same plant. Using the same techniques described above, volatiles emitted from branches after exposure to HIPVs are collected and

  12. Baleen whales host a unique gut microbiome with similarities to both carnivores and herbivores

    OpenAIRE

    Sanders, Jon G.; Beichman, Annabel C.; Roman, Joe; Scott, Jarrod J.; Emerson, David; McCarthy, James J.; Girguis, Peter R.

    2015-01-01

    Mammals host gut microbiomes of immense physiological consequence, but the determinants of diversity in these communities remain poorly understood. Diet appears to be the dominant factor, but host phylogeny also seems to be an important, if unpredictable, correlate. Here we show that baleen whales, which prey on animals (fish and crustaceans), harbor unique gut microbiomes with surprising parallels in functional capacity and higher level taxonomy to those of terrestrial herbivores. These simi...

  13. Beet western yellows virus infects the carnivorous plant Nepenthes mirabilis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miguel, Sissi; Biteau, Flore; Mignard, Benoit; Marais, Armelle; Candresse, Thierry; Theil, Sébastien; Bourgaud, Frédéric; Hehn, Alain

    2016-08-01

    Although poleroviruses are known to infect a broad range of higher plants, carnivorous plants have not yet been reported as hosts. Here, we describe the first polerovirus naturally infecting the pitcher plant Nepenthes mirabilis. The virus was identified through bioinformatic analysis of NGS transcriptome data. The complete viral genome sequence was assembled from overlapping PCR fragments and shown to share 91.1 % nucleotide sequence identity with the US isolate of beet western yellows virus (BWYV). Further analysis of other N. mirabilis plants revealed the presence of additional BWYV isolates differing by several insertion/deletion mutations in ORF5.

  14. Inducible indirect defence of plants : from mechanisms to ecological functions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dicke, M.; Poecke, van R.M.P.; Boer, de J.G.

    2003-01-01

    Inducible defences allow plants to be phenotypically plastic. Inducible indirect defence of plants by attracting carnivorous enemies of herbivorous arthropods can vary with plant species and genotype, with herbivore species or instar and potentially with other environmental conditions. So far,

  15. A Viscoelastic Deadly Fluid in Carnivorous Pitcher Plants

    OpenAIRE

    Gaume, Laurence; Forterre, Yoel

    2007-01-01

    International audience; Background : The carnivorous plants of the genus Nepenthes, widely distributed in the Asian tropics, rely mostly on nutrients derived from arthropods trapped in their pitcher-shaped leaves and digested by their enzymatic fluid. The genus exhibits a great diversity of prey and pitcher forms and its mechanism of trapping has long intrigued scientists. The slippery inner surfaces of the pitchers, which can be waxy or highly wettable, have so far been considered as the key...

  16. Herbivores and nutrients control grassland plant diversity via light limitation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borer, Elizabeth T.; Seabloom, Eric W.; Gruner, Daniel S.; Harpole, W. Stanley; Hillebrand, Helmut; Lind, Eric M.; Alder, Peter B.; Alberti, Juan; Anderson, T. Michael; Bakker, Jonathan D.; Biederman, Lori; Blumenthal, Dana; Brown, Cynthia S.; Brudvig, Lars A.; Buckley, Yvonne M.; Cadotte, Marc; Chu, Cheng-Jin; Cleland, Elsa E.; Crawley, Michael J.; Daleo, Pedro; Damschen, Ellen Ingman; Davies, Kendi F.; DeCrappeo, Nicole M.; Du, Guozhen; Firn, Jennifer; Hautier, Yann; Heckman, Robert W.; Hector, Andy; HilleRisLambers, Janneke; Iribarne, Oscar; Klein, Julia A.; Knops, Johannes M.H.; La Pierre, Kimberly J.; Leakey, Andrew D.B.; Li, Wei; MacDougall, Andrew S.; McCulley, Rebecca L.; Melbourne, Brett A.; Mitchell, Charles E.; Moore, Joslin L.; Mortensen, Brent; O'Halloran, Lydia R.; Orrock, John L.; Pascual, Jesús; Prober, Suzanne M.; Pyke, David A.; Risch, Anita C.; Schuetz, Martin; Smith, Melinda D.; Stevens, Carly J.; Sullivan, Lauren L.; Williams, Ryan J.; Wragg, Peter D.; Wright, Justin P.; Yang, Louie H.

    2014-01-01

    Human alterations to nutrient cycles and herbivore communities are affecting global biodiversity dramatically. Ecological theory predicts these changes should be strongly counteractive: nutrient addition drives plant species loss through intensified competition for light, whereas herbivores prevent competitive exclusion by increasing ground-level light, particularly in productive systems. Here we use experimental data spanning a globally relevant range of conditions to test the hypothesis that herbaceous plant species losses caused by eutrophication may be offset by increased light availability due to herbivory. This experiment, replicated in 40 grasslands on 6 continents, demonstrates that nutrients and herbivores can serve as counteracting forces to control local plant diversity through light limitation, independent of site productivity, soil nitrogen, herbivore type and climate. Nutrient addition consistently reduced local diversity through light limitation, and herbivory rescued diversity at sites where it alleviated light limitation. Thus, species loss from anthropogenic eutrophication can be ameliorated in grasslands where herbivory increases ground-level light.

  17. Perspectives provided by leopard and other cat genomes: how diet determined the evolutionary history of carnivores, omnivores, and herbivores

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Soonok; Cho, Yun Sung; Bhak, Jong; O’Brian, Stephen J.; Yeo, Joo-Hong

    2017-01-01

    Recent advances in genome sequencing technologies have enabled humans to generate and investigate the genomes of wild species. This includes the big cat family, such as tigers, lions, and leopards. Adding the first high quality leopard genome, we have performed an in-depth comparative analysis to identify the genomic signatures in the evolution of felid to become the top predators on land. Our study focused on how the carnivore genomes, as compared to the omnivore or herbivore genomes, shared evolutionary adaptations in genes associated with nutrient metabolism, muscle strength, agility, and other traits responsible for hunting and meat digestion. We found genetic evidence that genomes represent what animals eat through modifying genes. Highly conserved genetically relevant regions were discovered in genomes at the family level. Also, the Felidae family genomes exhibited low levels of genetic diversity associated with decreased population sizes, presumably because of their strict diet, suggesting their vulnerability and critical conservation status. Our findings can be used for human health enhancement, since we share the same genes as cats with some variation. This is an example how wildlife genomes can be a critical resource for human evolution, providing key genetic marker information for disease treatment. PMID:28042784

  18. Distance and sex determine host plant choice by herbivorous beetles.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel J Ballhorn

    Full Text Available Plants respond to herbivore damage with the release of volatile organic compounds (VOCs. This indirect defense can cause ecological costs when herbivores themselves use VOCs as cues to localize suitable host plants. Can VOCs reliably indicate food plant quality to herbivores?We determined the choice behavior of herbivorous beetles (Chrysomelidae: Gynandrobrotica guerreroensis and Cerotoma ruficornis when facing lima bean plants (Fabaceae: Phaseolus lunatus with different cyanogenic potential, which is an important constitutive direct defense. Expression of inducible indirect defenses was experimentally manipulated by jasmonic acid treatment at different concentrations. The long-distance responses of male and female beetles to the resulting induced plant volatiles were investigated in olfactometer and free-flight experiments and compared to the short-distance decisions of the same beetles in feeding trials.Female beetles of both species were repelled by VOCs released from all induced plants independent of the level of induction. In contrast, male beetles were repelled by strongly induced plants, showed no significant differences in choice behavior towards moderately induced plants, but responded positively to VOCs released from little induced plants. Thus, beetle sex and plant VOCs had a significant effect on host searching behavior. By contrast, feeding behavior of both sexes was strongly determined by the cyanogenic potential of leaves, although females again responded more sensitively than males. Apparently, VOCs mainly provide information to these beetles that are not directly related to food quality. Being induced by herbivory and involved in indirect plant defense, such VOCs might indicate the presence of competitors and predators to herbivores. We conclude that plant quality as a food source and finding a potentially enemy-free space is more important for female than for male insect herbivores, whereas the presence of a slightly damaged

  19. Herbivore-induced plant responses in Brassica oleracea prevail over effects of constitutive resistance and result in enhanced herbivore attack

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Poelman, E.H.; van Loon, J.J.A.; Van Dam, N.M.; Dicke, M.; Vet, L.E.M.

    2010-01-01

    1. Plant responses to herbivore attack may have community-wide effects on the composition of the plant-associated insect community. Thereby, plant responses to an early-season herbivore may have profound consequences for the amount and type of future attack. 2. Here we studied the effect of

  20. Combined effects of arthropod herbivores and phytopathogens on plant performance

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hauser, Thure Pavlo; Christensen, Stina; Heimes, Christine

    2013-01-01

    1. Many plants are simultaneously attacked by arthropod herbivores and phytopathogens. These may affect each other directly and indirectly, enhancing or reducing the amount of plant resources they each consume. Ultimately, this may reduce or enhance plant performance relative to what should...... be expected from the added impacts of herbivore and pathogen when they attack alone. 2. Previous studies have suggested synergistic and antagonistic impacts on plant performance from certain combinations of arthropods and pathogens, for example, synergistic impacts from necrotrophic pathogens together...... with wounding arthropods because of facilitated infection and antagonistic impacts from induction of pathogen resistance by sucking herbivores. 3. We compiled published studies on the impact of plant–herbivore–pathogen interactions on plant performance and used meta-analysis to search for consistent patterns...

  1. Information use by the predatory mite Phytoseiulus persimilis (Acari: Phytoseiidae), a specialised natural enemy of herbivorous spider mites

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Boer, de J.G.; Dicke, M.

    2005-01-01

    Plants can respond to infestation by herbivores with the emission of specific herbivore-induced plant volatiles. Many carnivorous arthropods that feed on herbivorous prey use these volatiles to locate their prey. Despite the growing amount of research papers on the interactions in tritrophic

  2. Influence of free water availability on a desert carnivore and herbivore.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kluever, Bryan M; Gese, Eric M; Dempsey, Steven J

    2017-04-01

    Anthropogenic manipulation of finite resources on the landscape to benefit individual species or communities is commonly employed by conservation and management agencies. One such action in arid regions is the construction and maintenance of water developments (i.e., wildlife guzzlers) adding free water on the landscape to buttress local populations, influence animal movements, or affect distributions of certain species of interest. Despite their prevalence, the utility of wildlife guzzlers remains largely untested. We employed a before-after control-impact (BACI) design over a 4-year period on the US Army Dugway Proving Ground, Utah, USA, to determine whether water availability at wildlife guzzlers influenced relative abundance of black-tailed jackrabbits Lepus californicus and relative use of areas near that resource by coyotes Canis latrans , and whether coyote visitations to guzzlers would decrease following elimination of water. Eliminating water availability at guzzlers did not influence jackrabbit relative abundance. Coyote relative use was impacted by water availability, with elimination of water reducing use in areas associated with our treatment, but not with areas associated with our control. Visitations of radio-collared coyotes to guzzlers declined nearly 3-fold following elimination of water. Our study provides the first evidence of a potential direct effect of water sources on a mammalian carnivore in an arid environment, but the ecological relevance of our finding is debatable. Future investigations aimed at determining water effects on terrestrial mammals could expand on our findings by incorporating manipulations of water availability, obtaining absolute estimates of population parameters and vital rates and incorporating fine-scale spatiotemporal data.

  3. Herbivore-induced plant volatiles accurately predict history of coexistence, diet breadth, and feeding mode of herbivores.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Danner, H.; Desurmont, G.A.; Cristescu, S.M.; Dam, N.M. van

    2017-01-01

    Herbivore-induced plant volatiles (HIPVs) serve as specific cues to higher trophic levels. Novel, exotic herbivores entering native foodwebs may disrupt the infochemical network as a result of changes in HIPV profiles. Here, we analysed HIPV blends of native Brassica rapa plants infested with one of

  4. Asymmetric impacts of two herbivore ecotypes on similar host plants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ecotypes may arise following allopatric separation from source populations. The simultaneous transfer of an exotic plant to a novel environment, along with its stenophagous herbivore, may complicate more traditional patterns of divergence from the plant and insect source populations. We evaluated ...

  5. Macroevolution of plant defenses against herbivores in the evening primroses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Marc T J; Ives, Anthony R; Ahern, Jeffrey; Salminen, Juha-Pekka

    2014-07-01

    Plant species vary greatly in defenses against herbivores, but existing theory has struggled to explain this variation. Here, we test how phylogenetic relatedness, tradeoffs, trait syndromes, and sexual reproduction affect the macroevolution of defense. To examine the macroevolution of defenses, we studied 26 Oenothera (Onagraceae) species, combining chemistry, comparative phylogenetics and experimental assays of resistance against generalist and specialist herbivores. We detected dozens of phenolic metabolites within leaves, including ellagitannins (ETs), flavonoids, and caffeic acid derivatives (CAs). The concentration and composition of phenolics exhibited low to moderate phylogenetic signal. There were clear negative correlations between multiple traits, supporting the prediction of allocation tradeoffs. There were also positively covarying suites of traits, but these suites did not strongly predict resistance to herbivores and thus did not act as defensive syndromes. By contrast, specific metabolites did correlate with the performance of generalist and specialist herbivores. Finally, that repeated losses of sex in Oenothera was associated with the evolution of increased flavonoid diversity and altered phenolic composition. These results show that secondary chemistry has evolved rapidly during the diversification of Oenothera. This evolution has been marked by allocation tradeoffs between traits, some of which are related to herbivore performance. The repeated loss of sex appears also to have constrained the evolution of plant secondary chemistry, which may help to explain variation in defense among plants. © 2014 The Authors. New Phytologist © 2014 New Phytologist Trust.

  6. Plant defenses against parasitic plants show similarities to those induced by herbivores and pathogens

    Science.gov (United States)

    Justin B. Runyon; Mark C. Mescher; Consuelo M. De Moraes

    2010-01-01

    Herbivores and pathogens come quickly to mind when one thinks of the biotic challenges faced by plants. Important but less appreciated enemies are parasitic plants, which can have important consequences for the fitness and survival of their hosts. Our knowledge of plant perception, signaling and response to herbivores and pathogens has expanded rapidly in recent years...

  7. Integrating Studies on Plant-Pollinator and Plant-Herbivore Interactions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lucas-Barbosa, Dani

    2016-01-01

    Research on herbivore-induced plant defence and research on pollination ecology have had a long history of separation. Plant reproduction of most angiosperm species is mediated by pollinators, and the effects of herbivore-induced plant defences on pollinator behaviour have been largely neglected.

  8. The impact of plant chemical diversity on plant-herbivore interactions at the community level.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salazar, Diego; Jaramillo, Alejandra; Marquis, Robert J

    2016-08-01

    Understanding the role of diversity in ecosystem processes and species interactions is a central goal of ecology. For plant-herbivore interactions, it has been hypothesized that when plant species diversity is reduced, loss of plant biomass to herbivores increases. Although long-standing, this hypothesis has received mixed support. Increasing plant chemical diversity with increasing plant taxonomic diversity is likely to be important for plant-herbivore interactions at the community level, but the role of chemical diversity is unexplored. Here we assess the effect of volatile chemical diversity on patterns of herbivore damage in naturally occurring patches of Piper (Piperaceae) shrubs in a Costa Rican lowland wet forest. Volatile chemical diversity negatively affected total, specialist, and generalist herbivore damage. Furthermore, there were differences between the effects of high-volatility and low-volatility chemical diversity on herbivore damage. High-volatility diversity reduced specialist herbivory, while low-volatility diversity reduced generalist herbivory. Our data suggest that, although increased plant diversity is expected to reduce average herbivore damage, this pattern is likely mediated by the diversity of defensive compounds and general classes of anti-herbivore traits, as well as the degree of specialization of the herbivores attacking those plants.

  9. Herbivore benefits from vectoring plant virus through reduction of period of vulnerability to predation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Belliure, B.; Janssen, A.; Sabelis, M.W.

    2008-01-01

    Herbivores can profit from vectoring plant pathogens because the induced defence of plants against pathogens sometimes interferes with the induced defence of plants against herbivores. Plants can also defend themselves indirectly by the action of the natural enemies of the herbivores. It is unknown

  10. Herbivore-induced plant volatiles and tritrophic interactions across spatial scales.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aartsma, Yavanna; Bianchi, Felix J J A; van der Werf, Wopke; Poelman, Erik H; Dicke, Marcel

    2017-12-01

    Herbivore-induced plant volatiles (HIPVs) are an important cue used in herbivore location by carnivorous arthropods such as parasitoids. The effects of plant volatiles on parasitoids have been well characterised at small spatial scales, but little research has been done on their effects at larger spatial scales. The spatial matrix of volatiles ('volatile mosaic') within which parasitoids locate their hosts is dynamic and heterogeneous. It is shaped by the spatial pattern of HIPV-emitting plants, the concentration, chemical composition and breakdown of the emitted HIPV blends, and by environmental factors such as wind, turbulence and vegetation that affect transport and mixing of odour plumes. The volatile mosaic may be exploited differentially by different parasitoid species, in relation to species traits such as sensory ability to perceive volatiles and the physical ability to move towards the source. Understanding how HIPVs influence parasitoids at larger spatial scales is crucial for our understanding of tritrophic interactions and sustainable pest management in agriculture. However, there is a large gap in our knowledge on how volatiles influence the process of host location by parasitoids at the landscape scale. Future studies should bridge the gap between the chemical and behavioural ecology of tritrophic interactions and landscape ecology. © 2017 The Authors. New Phytologist © 2017 New Phytologist Trust.

  11. Intraspecific chemical diversity among neighbouring plants correlates positively with plant size and herbivore load but negatively with herbivore damage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bustos-Segura, Carlos; Poelman, Erik H; Reichelt, Michael; Gershenzon, Jonathan; Gols, Rieta

    2017-01-01

    Intraspecific plant diversity can modify the properties of associated arthropod communities and plant fitness. However, it is not well understood which plant traits determine these ecological effects. We explored the effect of intraspecific chemical diversity among neighbouring plants on the associated invertebrate community and plant traits. In a common garden experiment, intraspecific diversity among neighbouring plants was manipulated using three plant populations of wild cabbage that differ in foliar glucosinolates. Plants were larger, harboured more herbivores, but were less damaged when plant diversity was increased. Glucosinolate concentration differentially correlated with generalist and specialist herbivore abundance. Glucosinolate composition correlated with plant damage, while in polycultures, variation in glucosinolate concentrations among neighbouring plants correlated positively with herbivore diversity and negatively with plant damage levels. The results suggest that intraspecific variation in secondary chemistry among neighbouring plants is important in determining the structure of the associated insect community and positively affects plant performance. © 2016 The Authors. Ecology Letters published by CNRS and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  12. Resilience in plant-herbivore networks during secondary succession.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Edith Villa-Galaviz

    Full Text Available Extensive land-use change in the tropics has produced a mosaic of successional forests within an agricultural and cattle-pasture matrix. Post-disturbance biodiversity assessments have found that regeneration speed depends upon propagule availability and the intensity and duration of disturbance. However, reestablishment of species interactions is still poorly understood and this limits our understanding of the anthropogenic impacts upon ecosystem resilience. This is the first investigation that evaluates plant-herbivore interaction networks during secondary succession. In particular we investigated succession in a Mexican tropical dry forest using data of caterpillar associations with plants during 2007-2010. Plant-herbivore networks showed high resilience. We found no differences in most network descriptors between secondary and mature forest and only recently abandoned fields were found to be different. No significant nestedness or modularity network structure was found. Plant-herbivore network properties appear to quickly reestablish after perturbation, despite differences in species richness and composition. This study provides some valuable guidelines for the implement of restoration efforts that can enhance ecological processes such as the interaction between plants and their herbivores.

  13. Herbivore-induced plant responses in Brassica oleracea prevail over effects of constitutive resistance and result in enhanced herbivore attack

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Poelman, E.H.; Loon, van J.J.A.; Dam, van N.M.; Vet, L.E.M.; Dicke, M.

    2010-01-01

    2. Here we studied the effect of early-season herbivory by caterpillars of Pieris rapae on the composition of the insect herbivore community on domesticated Brassica oleracea plants. We compared the effect of herbivory on two cultivars that differ in the degree of susceptibility to herbivores to

  14. Plant traits and plant biogeography control the biotic resistance provided by generalist herbivores

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Grutters, B.M.C.; Roijendijk, Yvonne; Verberk, W.C.E.P.; Bakker, E.S.

    2017-01-01

    1.Globalization and climate change trigger species invasions and range shifts, which reshuffle communities at an exceptional rate and expose plant migrants to unfamiliar herbivores. Dominant hypotheses to predict plant success are based on evolutionary novelty: either herbivores are maladapted to

  15. High-Arctic Plant-Herbivore Interactions under Climate Influence

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Berg, Thomas B.; Schmidt, Niels M.; Høye, Toke Thomas

    This chapter focuses on a 10-year data series from Zackenberg on the trophic interactions between two characteristic arctic plant species, arctic willow Salix arctica and mountain avens Dryas octopetala, and three herbivore species covering the very scale of size present at Zackenberg, namely......, the moth Sympistis zetterstedtii, the collared lemming Dicrostonyx groenlandicus and the musk ox Ovibos moschatus. Data from Zackenberg show that timing of snowmelt, the length of the growing season and summer temperature are the basic variables that determine the phenology of flowering and primary...... production upon which the herbivores depend, and snow may be the most important climatic factor affecting the different trophic levels and the interactions between them. Hence, the spatio-temporal distribution of snow, as well as thawing events during winter, may have considerable effects on the herbivores...

  16. A latex metabolite benefits plant fitness under root herbivore attack

    OpenAIRE

    Huber, M.; Epping, J.; Gronover, C.S.; Fricke, J.; Aziz, Z.; Brillatz, T.; Swyers, M.; Köllner, T.G.; Vogel, H.; Hammerbacher, A.; Triebwasser-Freese, D.; Robert, C.A.M.; Verhoeven, K.; Preite, V.; Gershenzon, J.

    2016-01-01

    Plants produce large amounts of secondary metabolites in their shoots and roots and store them in specialized secretory structures. Although secondary metabolites and their secretory structures are commonly assumed to have a defensive function, evidence that they benefit plant fitness under herbivore attack is scarce, especially below ground. Here, we tested whether latex secondary metabolites produced by the common dandelion (Taraxacum officinale agg.) decrease the performance of its major n...

  17. Coevolutionary arms race versus host defense chase in a tropical herbivore-plant system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Endara, María-José; Coley, Phyllis D; Ghabash, Gabrielle; Nicholls, James A; Dexter, Kyle G; Donoso, David A; Stone, Graham N; Pennington, R Toby; Kursar, Thomas A

    2017-09-05

    Coevolutionary models suggest that herbivores drive diversification and community composition in plants. For herbivores, many questions remain regarding how plant defenses shape host choice and community structure. We addressed these questions using the tree genus Inga and its lepidopteran herbivores in the Amazon. We constructed phylogenies for both plants and insects and quantified host associations and plant defenses. We found that similarity in herbivore assemblages between Inga species was correlated with similarity in defenses. There was no correlation with phylogeny, a result consistent with our observations that the expression of defenses in Inga is independent of phylogeny. Furthermore, host defensive traits explained 40% of herbivore community similarity. Analyses at finer taxonomic scales showed that different lepidopteran clades select hosts based on different defenses, suggesting taxon-specific histories of herbivore-host plant interactions. Finally, we compared the phylogeny and defenses of Inga to phylogenies for the major lepidopteran clades. We found that closely related herbivores fed on Inga with similar defenses rather than on closely related plants. Together, these results suggest that plant defenses might be more evolutionarily labile than the herbivore traits related to host association. Hence, there is an apparent asymmetry in the evolutionary interactions between Inga and its herbivores. Although plants may evolve under selection by herbivores, we hypothesize that herbivores may not show coevolutionary adaptations, but instead "chase" hosts based on the herbivore's own traits at the time that they encounter a new host, a pattern more consistent with resource tracking than with the arms race model of coevolution.

  18. The importance of phenology in studies of plant-herbivore-parasitoid interactions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Fei, Minghui

    2016-01-01

    Thesis title: The importance of phenology in studies of plant-herbivore-parasitoid interactions Author: Minghui Fei Abstract As food resources of herbivorous insects, the quality and quantity of plants can directly affect the performance of herbivorous insects and indirectly affect

  19. Combined effects of patch size and plant nutritional quality on local densities of insect herbivores

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bukovinszky, T.; Gols, R.; Kamp, A.; De Oliveira-Domingues, F.; Hambäck, P.A.; Jongema, Y.; Bezemer, T.M.; Dicke, M.; Van Dam, N.M.; Harvey, J.A.

    2010-01-01

    Plant–insect interactions occur in spatially heterogeneous habitats. Understanding how such interactions shape density distributions of herbivores requires knowledge on how variation in plant traits (e.g. nutritional quality) affects herbivore abundance through, for example, affecting movement rates

  20. Herbivore arthropods benefit from vectoring plant viruses

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Belliure, B.; Janssen, A.; Maris, P.C.; Peters, D.; Sabelis, M.W.

    2005-01-01

    Plants infected with pathogens often attract the pathogens' vectors, but it is not clear if this is advantageous to the vectors. We therefore quantified the direct and indirect (through the host plant) effects of a pathogen on its vector. A positive direct effect of the plant-pathogenic Tomato

  1. A Latex Metabolite Benefits Plant Fitness under Root Herbivore Attack.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Meret Huber

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Plants produce large amounts of secondary metabolites in their shoots and roots and store them in specialized secretory structures. Although secondary metabolites and their secretory structures are commonly assumed to have a defensive function, evidence that they benefit plant fitness under herbivore attack is scarce, especially below ground. Here, we tested whether latex secondary metabolites produced by the common dandelion (Taraxacum officinale agg. decrease the performance of its major native insect root herbivore, the larvae of the common cockchafer (Melolontha melolontha, and benefit plant vegetative and reproductive fitness under M. melolontha attack. Across 17 T. officinale genotypes screened by gas and liquid chromatography, latex concentrations of the sesquiterpene lactone taraxinic acid β-D-glucopyranosyl ester (TA-G were negatively associated with M. melolontha larval growth. Adding purified TA-G to artificial diet at ecologically relevant concentrations reduced larval feeding. Silencing the germacrene A synthase ToGAS1, an enzyme that was identified to catalyze the first committed step of TA-G biosynthesis, resulted in a 90% reduction of TA-G levels and a pronounced increase in M. melolontha feeding. Transgenic, TA-G-deficient lines were preferred by M. melolontha and suffered three times more root biomass reduction than control lines. In a common garden experiment involving over 2,000 T. officinale individuals belonging to 17 different genotypes, high TA-G concentrations were associated with the maintenance of high vegetative and reproductive fitness under M. melolontha attack. Taken together, our study demonstrates that a latex secondary metabolite benefits plants under herbivore attack, a result that provides a mechanistic framework for root herbivore driven natural selection and evolution of plant defenses below ground.

  2. A Latex Metabolite Benefits Plant Fitness under Root Herbivore Attack.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huber, Meret; Epping, Janina; Schulze Gronover, Christian; Fricke, Julia; Aziz, Zohra; Brillatz, Théo; Swyers, Michael; Köllner, Tobias G; Vogel, Heiko; Hammerbacher, Almuth; Triebwasser-Freese, Daniella; Robert, Christelle A M; Verhoeven, Koen; Preite, Veronica; Gershenzon, Jonathan; Erb, Matthias

    2016-01-01

    Plants produce large amounts of secondary metabolites in their shoots and roots and store them in specialized secretory structures. Although secondary metabolites and their secretory structures are commonly assumed to have a defensive function, evidence that they benefit plant fitness under herbivore attack is scarce, especially below ground. Here, we tested whether latex secondary metabolites produced by the common dandelion (Taraxacum officinale agg.) decrease the performance of its major native insect root herbivore, the larvae of the common cockchafer (Melolontha melolontha), and benefit plant vegetative and reproductive fitness under M. melolontha attack. Across 17 T. officinale genotypes screened by gas and liquid chromatography, latex concentrations of the sesquiterpene lactone taraxinic acid β-D-glucopyranosyl ester (TA-G) were negatively associated with M. melolontha larval growth. Adding purified TA-G to artificial diet at ecologically relevant concentrations reduced larval feeding. Silencing the germacrene A synthase ToGAS1, an enzyme that was identified to catalyze the first committed step of TA-G biosynthesis, resulted in a 90% reduction of TA-G levels and a pronounced increase in M. melolontha feeding. Transgenic, TA-G-deficient lines were preferred by M. melolontha and suffered three times more root biomass reduction than control lines. In a common garden experiment involving over 2,000 T. officinale individuals belonging to 17 different genotypes, high TA-G concentrations were associated with the maintenance of high vegetative and reproductive fitness under M. melolontha attack. Taken together, our study demonstrates that a latex secondary metabolite benefits plants under herbivore attack, a result that provides a mechanistic framework for root herbivore driven natural selection and evolution of plant defenses below ground.

  3. Herbivore specificity and the chemical basis of plant-plant communication in Baccharis salicifolia (Asteraceae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moreira, Xoaquín; Nell, Colleen S; Katsanis, Angelos; Rasmann, Sergio; Mooney, Kailen A

    2016-09-06

    It is well known that plant damage by leaf-chewing herbivores can induce resistance in neighbouring plants. It is unknown whether such communication occurs in response to sap-feeding herbivores, whether communication is specific to herbivore identity, and the chemical basis of communication, including specificity. We carried out glasshouse experiments using the California-native shrub Baccharis salicifolia and two ecologically distinct aphid species (one a dietary generalist and the other a specialist) to test for specificity of plant-plant communication and to document the underlying volatile organic compounds (VOCs). We show specificity of plant-plant communication to herbivore identity, as each aphid-damaged plant only induced resistance in neighbours against the same aphid species. The amount and composition of induced VOCs were markedly different between plants attacked by the two aphid species, providing a putative chemical mechanism for this specificity. Furthermore, a synthetic blend of the five major aphid-induced VOCs (ethanone, limonene, methyl salicylate, myrcene, ocimene) triggered resistance in receiving plants of comparable magnitude to aphid damage of neighbours, and the effects of the blend exceeded those of individual compounds. This study significantly advances our understanding of plant-plant communication by demonstrating the importance of sap-feeding herbivores and herbivore identity, as well as the chemical basis for such effects. © 2016 The Authors. New Phytologist © 2016 New Phytologist Trust.

  4. Does plant trait diversity reduce the ability of herbivores to defend against predators? The plant variability-gut acclimation hypothesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wetzel, William C; Thaler, Jennifer S

    2016-04-01

    Variability in plant chemistry has long been believed to suppress populations of insect herbivores by constraining herbivore resource selection behavior in ways that make herbivores more vulnerable to predation. The focus on behavior, however, overlooks the pervasive physiological effects of plant variability on herbivores. Here we propose the plant variability-gut acclimation hypothesis, which posits that plant chemical variability constrains herbivore anti-predator defenses by frequently requiring herbivores to acclimate their guts to changing plant defenses and nutrients. Gut acclimation, including changes to morphology and detoxification enzymes, requires time and nutrients, and we argue these costs will constrain how and when herbivores can mount anti-predator defenses. A consequence of this hypothesis is stronger top-down control of herbivores in heterogeneous plant populations. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. New evidence for a multi-functional role of herbivore-induced plant volatiles in defense against herbivores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodriguez-Saona, Cesar R; Frost, Christopher J

    2010-01-01

    A diverse, often species-specific, array of herbivore-induced plant volatiles (HIPVs) are commonly emitted from plants after herbivore attack. Although research in the last 3 decades indicates a multi-functional role of these HIPVs, the evolutionary rationale underpinning HIPV emissions remains an open question. Many studies have documented that HIPVs can attract natural enemies, and some studies indicate that neighboring plants may eavesdrop their undamaged neighbors and induce or prime their own defenses prior to herbivore attack. Both of these ecological roles for HIPVs are risky strategies for the emitting plant. In a recent paper, we reported that most branches within a blueberry bush share limited vascular connectivity, which restricts the systemic movement of internal signals. Blueberry branches circumvent this limitation by responding to HIPVs emitted from neighboring branches of the same plant: exposure to HIPVs increases levels of defensive signaling hormones, changes their defensive status, and makes undamaged branches more resistant to herbivores. Similar findings have been reported recently for sagebrush, poplar and lima beans, where intra-plant communication played a role in activating or priming defenses against herbivores. Thus, there is increasing evidence that intra-plant communication occurs in a wide range of taxonomically unrelated plant species. While the degree to which this phenomenon increases a plant's fitness remains to be determined in most cases, we here argue that within-plant signaling provides more adaptive benefit for HIPV emissions than does between-plant signaling or attraction of predators. That is, the emission of HIPVs might have evolved primarily to protect undamaged parts of the plant against potential enemies, and neighboring plants and predators of herbivores later co-opted such HIPV signals for their own benefit.

  6. Herbivore preference for native vs. exotic plants: generalist herbivores from multiple continents prefer exotic plants that are evolutionarily naïve.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wendy E Morrison

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available Enemy release and biotic resistance are competing, but not mutually exclusive, hypotheses addressing the success or failure of non-native plants entering a new region. Enemy release predicts that exotic plants become invasive by escaping their co-adapted herbivores and by being unrecognized or unpalatable to native herbivores that have not been selected to consume them. In contrast, biotic resistance predicts that native generalist herbivores will suppress exotic plants that will not have been selected to deter these herbivores. We tested these hypotheses using five generalist herbivores from North or South America and nine confamilial pairs of native and exotic aquatic plants. Four of five herbivores showed 2.4-17.3 fold preferences for exotic over native plants. Three species of South American apple snails (Pomacea sp. preferred North American over South American macrophytes, while a North American crayfish Procambarus spiculifer preferred South American, Asian, and Australian macrophytes over North American relatives. Apple snails have their center of diversity in South America, but a single species (Pomacea paludosa occurs in North America. This species, with a South American lineage but a North American distribution, did not differentiate between South American and North American plants. Its preferences correlated with preferences of its South American relatives rather than with preferences of the North American crayfish, consistent with evolutionary inertia due to its South American lineage. Tests of plant traits indicated that the crayfish responded primarily to plant structure, the apple snails primarily to plant chemistry, and that plant protein concentration played no detectable role. Generalist herbivores preferred non-native plants, suggesting that intact guilds of native, generalist herbivores may provide biotic resistance to plant invasions. Past invasions may have been facilitated by removal of native herbivores, introduction of

  7. Community-Weighted Mean Plant Traits Predict Small Scale Distribution of Insect Root Herbivore Abundance.

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    Ilja Sonnemann

    Full Text Available Small scale distribution of insect root herbivores may promote plant species diversity by creating patches of different herbivore pressure. However, determinants of small scale distribution of insect root herbivores, and impact of land use intensity on their small scale distribution are largely unknown. We sampled insect root herbivores and measured vegetation parameters and soil water content along transects in grasslands of different management intensity in three regions in Germany. We calculated community-weighted mean plant traits to test whether the functional plant community composition determines the small scale distribution of insect root herbivores. To analyze spatial patterns in plant species and trait composition and insect root herbivore abundance we computed Mantel correlograms. Insect root herbivores mainly comprised click beetle (Coleoptera, Elateridae larvae (43% in the investigated grasslands. Total insect root herbivore numbers were positively related to community-weighted mean traits indicating high plant growth rates and biomass (specific leaf area, reproductive- and vegetative plant height, and negatively related to plant traits indicating poor tissue quality (leaf C/N ratio. Generalist Elaterid larvae, when analyzed independently, were also positively related to high plant growth rates and furthermore to root dry mass, but were not related to tissue quality. Insect root herbivore numbers were not related to plant cover, plant species richness and soil water content. Plant species composition and to a lesser extent plant trait composition displayed spatial autocorrelation, which was not influenced by land use intensity. Insect root herbivore abundance was not spatially autocorrelated. We conclude that in semi-natural grasslands with a high share of generalist insect root herbivores, insect root herbivores affiliate with large, fast growing plants, presumably because of availability of high quantities of food. Affiliation of

  8. Metabolite profiling of the carnivorous pitcher plants Darlingtonia and Sarracenia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hotti, Hannu; Gopalacharyulu, Peddinti; Seppänen-Laakso, Tuulikki; Rischer, Heiko

    2017-01-01

    Sarraceniaceae is a New World carnivorous plant family comprising three genera: Darlingtonia, Heliamphora, and Sarracenia. The plants occur in nutrient-poor environments and have developed insectivorous capability in order to supplement their nutrient uptake. Sarracenia flava contains the alkaloid coniine, otherwise only found in Conium maculatum, in which its biosynthesis has been studied, and several Aloe species. Its ecological role and biosynthetic origin in S. flava is speculative. The aim of the current research was to investigate the occurrence of coniine in Sarracenia and Darlingtonia and to identify common constituents of both genera, unique compounds for individual variants and floral scent chemicals. In this comprehensive metabolic profiling study, we looked for compound patterns that are associated with the taxonomy of Sarracenia species. In total, 57 different Sarracenia and D. californica accessions were used for metabolite content screening by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. The resulting high-dimensional data were studied using a data mining approach. The two genera are characterized by a large number of metabolites and huge chemical diversity between different species. By applying feature selection for clustering and by integrating new biochemical data with existing phylogenetic data, we were able to demonstrate that the chemical composition of the species can be explained by their known classification. Although transcriptome analysis did not reveal a candidate gene for coniine biosynthesis, the use of a sensitive selected ion monitoring method enabled the detection of coniine in eight Sarracenia species, showing that it is more widespread in this genus than previously believed.

  9. Metabolite profiling of the carnivorous pitcher plants Darlingtonia and Sarracenia.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hannu Hotti

    Full Text Available Sarraceniaceae is a New World carnivorous plant family comprising three genera: Darlingtonia, Heliamphora, and Sarracenia. The plants occur in nutrient-poor environments and have developed insectivorous capability in order to supplement their nutrient uptake. Sarracenia flava contains the alkaloid coniine, otherwise only found in Conium maculatum, in which its biosynthesis has been studied, and several Aloe species. Its ecological role and biosynthetic origin in S. flava is speculative. The aim of the current research was to investigate the occurrence of coniine in Sarracenia and Darlingtonia and to identify common constituents of both genera, unique compounds for individual variants and floral scent chemicals. In this comprehensive metabolic profiling study, we looked for compound patterns that are associated with the taxonomy of Sarracenia species. In total, 57 different Sarracenia and D. californica accessions were used for metabolite content screening by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. The resulting high-dimensional data were studied using a data mining approach. The two genera are characterized by a large number of metabolites and huge chemical diversity between different species. By applying feature selection for clustering and by integrating new biochemical data with existing phylogenetic data, we were able to demonstrate that the chemical composition of the species can be explained by their known classification. Although transcriptome analysis did not reveal a candidate gene for coniine biosynthesis, the use of a sensitive selected ion monitoring method enabled the detection of coniine in eight Sarracenia species, showing that it is more widespread in this genus than previously believed.

  10. Evidence for competition between carnivorous plants and spiders.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2010-10-07

    Several studies have demonstrated that competition between disparate taxa can be important in determining community structure, yet surprisingly, to our knowledge, no quantitative studies have been conducted on competition between carnivorous plants and animals. To examine potential competition between these taxa, we studied dietary and microhabitat overlap between pink sundews (Drosera capillaris) and wolf spiders (Lycosidae) in the field, and conducted a laboratory experiment examining the effects of wolf spiders on sundew fitness. In the field, we found that sundews and spiders had a high dietary overlap with each other and with the available arthropod prey. Associations between sundews and spiders depended on spatial scale: both sundews and spiders were found more frequently in quadrats with more abundant prey, but within quadrats, spiders constructed larger webs and located them further away from sundews as the total sundew trapping area increased, presumably to reduce competition. Spiders also constructed larger webs when fewer prey were available. In the laboratory, our experiment revealed that spiders can significantly reduce sundew fitness. Our findings suggest that members of the plant and animal kingdoms can and do compete.

  11. Slow food: insect prey and chitin induce phytohormone accumulation and gene expression in carnivorous Nepenthes plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yilamujiang, Ayufu; Reichelt, Michael; Mithöfer, Axel

    2016-08-01

    Carnivorous Nepenthes plants use modified leaves forming pitfall traps to capture and digest prey, mainly insects, for additional nutrient supply. These traps, so called pitchers, contain a plant-derived fluid composed of many hydrolytic enzymes and defence-related proteins. In this study, the prey-induced induction of corresponding genes of those proteins and a role for phytohormones in this process was analysed. Tissue from insect prey-fed, chitin- and phytohormone-challenged pitchers was harvested and analysed for selected gene expressions by a quantitative PCR technique. Phytohormone levels were determined by LC-MS/MS. Nepenthesin proteolytic activities were measured in the digestive fluid using a fluorescence substrate. Insect prey in the pitchers induced the accumulation of phytohormones such as jasmonates as well as the transcription of studied genes encoding a chitinase 3 and a protease (nepenthesin I), whereas a defence-related protein (PR-1) gene was not induced. Treatment with chitin as a component of the insects' exoskeleton triggered the accumulation of jasmonates, the expression of nepenthesin I and chitinase 3 genes similar to jasmonic acid treatment, and induced protease activity in the fluid. All detectable responses were slowly induced. The results suggest that upon insect prey catch a sequence of signals is initiated: (1) insect-derived chitin, (2) jasmonate as endogenous phytohormone signal, (3) the induction of digestive gene expression and (4) protein expression. This resembles a similar hierarchy of events as described from plant pathogen/herbivore interactions, supporting the idea that carnivory evolved from plant defences. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Annals of Botany Company. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  12. Suppression of Plant Defenses by Herbivorous Mites Is Not Associated with Adaptation to Host Plants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jéssica T. Paulo

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available Some herbivores suppress plant defenses, which may be viewed as a result of the coevolutionary arms race between plants and herbivores. However, this ability is usually studied in a one-herbivore-one-plant system, which hampers comparative studies that could corroborate this hypothesis. Here, we extend this paradigm and ask whether the herbivorous spider-mite Tetranychus evansi, which suppresses the jasmonic-acid pathway in tomato plants, is also able to suppress defenses in other host plants at different phylogenetic distances from tomatoes. We test this using different plants from the Solanales order, namely tomato, jimsonweed, tobacco, and morning glory (three Solanaceae and one Convolvulaceae, and bean plants (Fabales. First, we compare the performance of T. evansi to that of the other two most-commonly found species of the same genus, T. urticae and T. ludeni, on several plants. We found that the performance of T. evansi is higher than that of the other species only on tomato plants. We then showed, by measuring trypsin inhibitor activity and life history traits of conspecific mites on either clean or pre-infested plants, that T. evansi can suppress plant defenses on all plants except tobacco. This study suggests that the suppression of plant defenses may occur on host plants other than those to which herbivores are adapted.

  13. Construction costs, payback times, and the leaf economics of carnivorous plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karagatzides, Jim D; Ellison, Aaron M

    2009-09-01

    Understanding how different plant species and functional types "invest" carbon and nutrients is a major goal of plant ecologists. Two measures of such investments are "construction costs" (carbon needed to produce each gram of tissue) and associated "payback times" for photosynthesis to recover construction costs. These measurements integrate among traits used to assess leaf-trait scaling relationships. Carnivorous plants are model systems for examining mechanisms of leaf-trait coordination, but no studies have measured simultaneously construction costs of carnivorous traps and their photosynthetic rates to determine payback times of traps. We measured mass-based construction costs (CC(mass)) and photosynthesis (A(mass)) for traps, leaves, roots, and rhizomes of 15 carnivorous plant species grown under greenhouse conditions. There were highly significant differences among species in CC(mass) for each structure. Mean CC(mass) of carnivorous traps (1.14 ± 0.24 g glucose/g dry mass) was significantly lower than CC(mass) of leaves of 267 noncarnivorous plant species (1.47 ± 0.17), but all carnivorous plants examined had very low A(mass) and thus, long payback times (495-1551 h). Our results provide the first clear estimates of the marginal benefits of botanical carnivory and place carnivorous plants at the "slow and tough" end of the universal spectrum of leaf traits.

  14. A viscoelastic deadly fluid in carnivorous pitcher plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gaume, Laurence; Forterre, Yoel

    2007-11-21

    The carnivorous plants of the genus Nepenthes, widely distributed in the Asian tropics, rely mostly on nutrients derived from arthropods trapped in their pitcher-shaped leaves and digested by their enzymatic fluid. The genus exhibits a great diversity of prey and pitcher forms and its mechanism of trapping has long intrigued scientists. The slippery inner surfaces of the pitchers, which can be waxy or highly wettable, have so far been considered as the key trapping devices. However, the occurrence of species lacking such epidermal specializations but still effective at trapping insects suggests the possible implication of other mechanisms. Using a combination of insect bioassays, high-speed video and rheological measurements, we show that the digestive fluid of Nepenthes rafflesiana is highly viscoelastic and that this physical property is crucial for the retention of insects in its traps. Trapping efficiency is shown to remain strong even when the fluid is highly diluted by water, as long as the elastic relaxation time of the fluid is higher than the typical time scale of insect movements. This finding challenges the common classification of Nepenthes pitchers as simple passive traps and is of great adaptive significance for these tropical plants, which are often submitted to high rainfalls and variations in fluid concentration. The viscoelastic trap constitutes a cryptic but potentially widespread adaptation of Nepenthes species and could be a homologous trait shared through common ancestry with the sundew (Drosera) flypaper plants. Such large production of a highly viscoelastic biopolymer fluid in permanent pools is nevertheless unique in the plant kingdom and suggests novel applications for pest control.

  15. A viscoelastic deadly fluid in carnivorous pitcher plants.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laurence Gaume

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The carnivorous plants of the genus Nepenthes, widely distributed in the Asian tropics, rely mostly on nutrients derived from arthropods trapped in their pitcher-shaped leaves and digested by their enzymatic fluid. The genus exhibits a great diversity of prey and pitcher forms and its mechanism of trapping has long intrigued scientists. The slippery inner surfaces of the pitchers, which can be waxy or highly wettable, have so far been considered as the key trapping devices. However, the occurrence of species lacking such epidermal specializations but still effective at trapping insects suggests the possible implication of other mechanisms. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Using a combination of insect bioassays, high-speed video and rheological measurements, we show that the digestive fluid of Nepenthes rafflesiana is highly viscoelastic and that this physical property is crucial for the retention of insects in its traps. Trapping efficiency is shown to remain strong even when the fluid is highly diluted by water, as long as the elastic relaxation time of the fluid is higher than the typical time scale of insect movements. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: This finding challenges the common classification of Nepenthes pitchers as simple passive traps and is of great adaptive significance for these tropical plants, which are often submitted to high rainfalls and variations in fluid concentration. The viscoelastic trap constitutes a cryptic but potentially widespread adaptation of Nepenthes species and could be a homologous trait shared through common ancestry with the sundew (Drosera flypaper plants. Such large production of a highly viscoelastic biopolymer fluid in permanent pools is nevertheless unique in the plant kingdom and suggests novel applications for pest control.

  16. High-Arctic Plant-Herbivore Interactions under Climate Influence

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Berg, Thomas B.; Schmidt, Niels M.; Høye, Toke Thomas

    production upon which the herbivores depend, and snow may be the most important climatic factor affecting the different trophic levels and the interactions between them. Hence, the spatio-temporal distribution of snow, as well as thawing events during winter, may have considerable effects on the herbivores...... by both the timing of onset and the duration of winter snow-cover. Musk oxen significantly reduced the productivity of arctic willow, while high densities of collared lemmings during winter reduced the production of mountain averts flowers in the following summer. Under a deep snow-layer scenario, climate...... and the previous year's density of musk oxen had a negative effect on the present year's production of arctic willow. Previous year's primary production of arctic willow, in turn, significantly affected the present year's density of musk oxen positively. Climatic factors that affect primary production of plants...

  17. Insect herbivores change the outcome of plant competition through both inter- and intraspecific processes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Tania N; Underwood, Nora; Inouye, Brian D

    2013-08-01

    Insect herbivores can affect plant abundance and community composition, and theory suggests that herbivores influence plant communities by altering interspecific interactions among plants. Because the outcome of interspecific interactions is influenced by the per capita competitive ability of plants, density dependence, and intrinsic rates of increase, measuring herbivore effects on all these processes is necessary to understand the mechanisms by which herbivores influence plant communities. We fit alternative competition models to data from a response surface experiment conducted over four years to examine how herbivores affected the outcome of competition between two perennial plants, Solidago altissima and Solanum carolinense. Within a growing season, herbivores reduced S. carolinense plant size but did not affect the size of S. altissima, which exhibited compensatory growth. Across seasons, herbivores did not affect S. carolinense density or biomass but reduced both the density and population growth of S. altissima. The best-fit models indicated that the effects of herbivores varied with year. In some years, herbivores increased the per capita competitive effect of S. altissima on S. carolinense; in other years, herbivores influenced the intrinsic rate of increase of S. altissima. We examined possible herbivore effects on the longer-term outcome of competition (over the time scale of a typical old-field habitat), using simulations based on the best-fit models. In the absence of herbivores, plant coexistence was observed. In the presence of herbivores, S. carolinense was excluded by S. altissima in 72.3% of the simulations. We demonstrate that herbivores can influence the outcome of competition through changes in both per capita competitive effects and intrinsic rates of increase. We discuss the implications of these results for ecological succession and biocontrol.

  18. Plant protein and secondary metabolites influence diet selection in a mammalian specialist herbivore

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amy C. Ulappa; Rick G. Kelsey; Graham G. Frye; Janet L. Rachlow; LIsa A. Shipley; Laura Bond; Xinzhu Pu; Jennifer Sorensen. Forbey

    2014-01-01

    For herbivores, nutrient intake is limited by the relatively low nutritional quality of plants and high concentrations of potentially toxic defensive compounds (plant secondary metabolites [PSMs]) produced by many plants. In response to phytochemical challenges, some herbivores selectively forage on plants with higher nutrient and lower PSM concentrations relative to...

  19. Experimental effects of herbivore density on above-ground plant biomass in an alpine grassland ecosystem

    OpenAIRE

    Austrheim, Gunnar; Speed, James David Mervyn; Martinsen, Vegard; Mulder, Jan; Mysterud, Atle

    2014-01-01

    Herbivores may increase or decrease aboveground plant productivity depending on factors such as herbivore density and habitat productivity. The grazing optimization hypothesis predicts a peak in plant production at intermediate herbivore densities, but has rarely been tested experimentally in an alpine field setting. In an experimental design with three densities of sheep (high, low, and no sheep), we harvested aboveground plant biomass in alpine grasslands prior to treatment and after five y...

  20. Elucidating the interaction between light competition and herbivore feeding patterns using functional-structural plant modelling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Vries, Jorad; Poelman, Erik H; Anten, Niels; Evers, Jochem B

    2018-01-24

    Plants usually compete with neighbouring plants for resources such as light as well as defend themselves against herbivorous insects. This requires investment of limiting resources, resulting in optimal resource distribution patterns and trade-offs between growth- and defence-related traits. A plant's competitive success is determined by the spatial distribution of its resources in the canopy. The spatial distribution of herbivory in the canopy in turn differs between herbivore species as the level of herbivore specialization determines their response to the distribution of resources and defences in the canopy. Here, we investigated to what extent competition for light affects plant susceptibility to herbivores with different feeding preferences. To quantify interactions between herbivory and competition, we developed and evaluated a 3-D spatially explicit functional-structural plant model for Brassica nigra that mechanistically simulates competition in a dynamic light environment, and also explicitly models leaf area removal by herbivores with different feeding preferences. With this novel approach, we can quantitatively explore the extent to which herbivore feeding location and light competition interact in their effect on plant performance. Our results indicate that there is indeed a strong interaction between levels of plant-plant competition and herbivore feeding preference. When plants did not compete, herbivory had relatively small effects irrespective of feeding preference. Conversely, when plants competed, herbivores with a preference for young leaves had a strong negative effect on the competitiveness and subsequent performance of the plant, whereas herbivores with a preference for old leaves did not. Our study predicts how plant susceptibility to herbivory depends on the composition of the herbivore community and the level of plant competition, and highlights the importance of considering the full range of dynamics in plant-plant-herbivore interactions

  1. Positive interactions between large herbivores and grasshoppers, and their consequences for grassland plant diversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhong, Zhiwei; Wang, Deli; Zhu, Hui; Wang, Ling; Feng, Chao; Wang, Zhongnan

    2014-04-01

    Although the influence of positive interactions on plant and sessile communities has been well documented, surprisingly little is known about their role in structuring terrestrial animal communities. We evaluated beneficial interactions between two distantly related herbivore taxa, large vertebrate grazers (sheep) and smaller insect grazers (grasshoppers), using a set of field experiments in eastern Eurasian steppe of China. Grazing by large herbivores caused significantly higher grasshopper density, and this pattern persisted until the end of the experiment. Grasshoppers, in turn, increased the foraging time of larger herbivores, but such response occurred only during the peak of growing season (August). These reciprocal interactions were driven by differential herbivore foraging preferences for plant resources; namely, large herbivores preferred Artemisia forbs, whereas grasshoppers preferred Leymus grass. The enhancement of grasshopper density in areas grazed by large herbivores likely resulted from the selective consumption of Artemisia forbs by vertebrate grazers, which may potentially improve the host finding of grasshoppers. Likewise, grasshoppers appeared to benefit large herbivores by decreasing the cover and density of the dominant grass Leymus chinensis, which hampers large herbivores' access to palatable forbs. Moreover, we found that large herbivores grazing alone may significantly decrease plant diversity, yet grasshoppers appeared to mediate such negative effects when they grazed with large herbivores. Our results suggest that the positive, reciprocal interactions in terrestrial herbivore communities may be more prevalent and complex than previously thought.

  2. Getting prepared for future attack : induction of plant defences by herbivore egg deposition and consequences for the insect community

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pashalidou, F.G.

    2015-01-01

    Plants have evolved intriguing defences against insect herbivores. Compared to constitutive Plants have evolved intriguing defences against insect herbivores. Compared to constitutive defences that are always present, plants can respond with inducible defences when they are attacked. Insect

  3. Contrasting effects of specialist and generalist herbivores on resistance evolution in invasive plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Zhijie; Pan, Xiaoyun; Blumenthal, Dana; van Kleunen, Mark; Liu, Mu; Li, Bo

    2018-04-01

    Invasive alien plants are likely to be released from specialist herbivores and at the same time encounter biotic resistance from resident generalist herbivores in their new ranges. The Shifting Defense hypothesis predicts that this will result in evolution of decreased defense against specialist herbivores and increased defense against generalist herbivores. To test this, we performed a comprehensive meta-analysis of 61 common garden studies that provide data on resistance and/or tolerance for both introduced and native populations of 32 invasive plant species. We demonstrate that introduced populations, relative to native populations, decreased their resistance against specialists, and increased their resistance against generalists. These differences were significant when resistance was measured in terms of damage caused by the herbivore, but not in terms of performance of the herbivore. Furthermore, we found the first evidence that the magnitude of resistance differences between introduced and native populations depended significantly on herbivore origin (i.e., whether the test herbivore was collected from the native or non-native range of the invasive plant). Finally, tolerance to generalists was found to be higher in introduced populations, while neither tolerance to specialists nor that to simulated herbivory differed between introduced and native plant populations. We conclude that enemy release from specialist herbivores and biotic resistance from generalist herbivores have contrasting effects on resistance evolution in invasive plants. Our results thus provide strong support for the Shifting Defense hypothesis. © 2018 by the Ecological Society of America.

  4. Elucidating the interaction between light competition and herbivore feeding patterns using functional–structural plant modelling

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Vries, Jorad; Poelman, Erik H; Anten, Niels; Evers, Jochem B

    2018-01-01

    Abstract Background and Aims Plants usually compete with neighbouring plants for resources such as light as well as defend themselves against herbivorous insects. This requires investment of limiting resources, resulting in optimal resource distribution patterns and trade-offs between growth- and defence-related traits. A plant’s competitive success is determined by the spatial distribution of its resources in the canopy. The spatial distribution of herbivory in the canopy in turn differs between herbivore species as the level of herbivore specialization determines their response to the distribution of resources and defences in the canopy. Here, we investigated to what extent competition for light affects plant susceptibility to herbivores with different feeding preferences. Methods To quantify interactions between herbivory and competition, we developed and evaluated a 3-D spatially explicit functional–structural plant model for Brassica nigra that mechanistically simulates competition in a dynamic light environment, and also explicitly models leaf area removal by herbivores with different feeding preferences. With this novel approach, we can quantitatively explore the extent to which herbivore feeding location and light competition interact in their effect on plant performance. Key Results Our results indicate that there is indeed a strong interaction between levels of plant–plant competition and herbivore feeding preference. When plants did not compete, herbivory had relatively small effects irrespective of feeding preference. Conversely, when plants competed, herbivores with a preference for young leaves had a strong negative effect on the competitiveness and subsequent performance of the plant, whereas herbivores with a preference for old leaves did not. Conclusions Our study predicts how plant susceptibility to herbivory depends on the composition of the herbivore community and the level of plant competition, and highlights the importance of considering

  5. Recent advances in plant-herbivore interactions [version 1; referees: 2 approved

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Deron E. Burkepile

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Plant-herbivore interactions shape community dynamics across marine, freshwater, and terrestrial habitats. From amphipods to elephants and from algae to trees, plant-herbivore relationships are the crucial link generating animal biomass (and human societies from mere sunlight. These interactions are, thus, pivotal to understanding the ecology and evolution of virtually any ecosystem. Here, we briefly highlight recent advances in four areas of plant-herbivore interactions: (1 plant defense theory, (2 herbivore diversity and ecosystem function, (3 predation risk aversion and herbivory, and (4 how a changing climate impacts plant-herbivore interactions. Recent advances in plant defense theory, for example, highlight how plant life history and defense traits affect and are affected by multiple drivers, including enemy pressure, resource availability, and the local plant neighborhood, resulting in trait-mediated feedback loops linking trophic interactions with ecosystem nutrient dynamics. Similarly, although the positive effect of consumer diversity on ecosystem function has long been recognized, recent advances using DNA barcoding to elucidate diet, and Global Positioning System/remote sensing to determine habitat selection and impact, have shown that herbivore communities are probably even more functionally diverse than currently realized. Moreover, although most diversity-function studies continue to emphasize plant diversity, herbivore diversity may have even stronger impacts on ecosystem multifunctionality. Recent studies also highlight the role of risk in plant-herbivore interactions, and risk-driven trophic cascades have emerged as landscape-scale patterns in a variety of ecosystems. Perhaps not surprisingly, many plant-herbivore interactions are currently being altered by climate change, which affects plant growth rates and resource allocation, expression of chemical defenses, plant phenology, and herbivore metabolism and behavior. Finally

  6. Variation in natural plant products and the attraction of bodyguards involved in indirect plant defense

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mumm, R.; Dicke, M.

    2010-01-01

    Plants can respond to feeding or egg deposition by herbivorous arthropods by changing the volatile blend that they emit. These herbivore-induced plant volatiles (HIPVs) can attract carnivorous natural enemies of the herbivores, such as parasitoids and predators, a phenomenon that is called indirect

  7. Botanical insecticides inspired by plant-herbivore chemical interactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miresmailli, Saber; Isman, Murray B

    2014-01-01

    Plants have evolved a plethora of secondary chemicals to protect themselves against herbivores and pathogens, some of which have been used historically for pest management. The extraction methods used by industry render many phytochemicals ineffective as insecticides despite their bioactivity in the natural context. In this review, we examine how plants use their secondary chemicals in nature and compare this with how they are used as insecticides to understand why the efficacy of botanical insecticides can be so variable. If the commercial production of botanical insecticides is to become a viable pest management option, factors such as production cost, resource availability, and extraction and formulation techniques need be considered alongside innovative application technologies to ensure consistent efficacy of botanical insecticides. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Mechanisms and ecological consequences of plant defence induction and suppression in herbivore communities

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kant, M.R.; Jonckheere, W.; Knegt, B.; Lemos, F.; Liu, J.; Schimmel, B.C.J.; Villarroel, C.A.; Ataide, L.M.S.; Dermauw, W.; Glas, J.J.; Egas, M.; Janssen, A.; Van Leeuwen, T.; Schuurink, R.C.; Sabelis, M.W.; Alba, J.M.

    2015-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Plants are hotbeds for parasites such as arthropod herbivores, which acquire nutrients and energy from their hosts in order to grow and reproduce. Hence plants are selected to evolve resistance, which in turn selects for herbivores that can cope with this resistance. To preserve their

  9. Mechanisms and ecological implications of plant-mediated interactions between belowground and aboveground insect herbivores

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Papadopoulou, G.V.; Dam, N.M. van

    2017-01-01

    Plant-mediated interactions between belowground (BG) and aboveground (AG) herbivores have received increasing interest recently. However, the molecular mechanisms underlying ecological consequences of BG–AG interactions are not fully clear yet. Herbivore-induced plant defenses are complex and

  10. Iridoid and caffeoyl phenylethanoid glycosides of the endangered carnivorous plant Pinguicula lusitanica L. (Lentibulariaceae)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Grevenstuk, T.; Hooft, van der J.J.J.; Vervoort, J.J.M.; Waard, de P.; Romano, A.

    2009-01-01

    This work reports for the first time the identification of the major compounds of Pinguicula lusitanica, an endangered carnivorous plant species, using minimal amounts of plant material. A methanol extract was prepared from in vitro cultured plantlets and analyzed by HPLC–SPE–NMR/HPLC–MS. Three

  11. Quite a few reasons for calling carnivores 'the most wonderful plants in the world'

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Król, E.; Plancho, B. J.; Adamec, Lubomír; Stolarz, M.; Dziubińska, H.; Trebacz, K.

    2012-01-01

    Roč. 109, č. 1 (2012), s. 47-64 ISSN 0305-7364 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516 Institutional support: RVO:67985939 Keywords : carnivorous plants * gland functioning * plant excitability Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 3.449, year: 2012

  12. Troublesome toxins: time to re-think plant-herbivore interactions in vertebrate ecology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Feng Zhilan

    2009-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Earlier models of plant-herbivore interactions relied on forms of functional response that related rates of ingestion by herbivores to mechanical or physical attributes such as bite size and rate. These models fail to predict a growing number of findings that implicate chemical toxins as important determinants of plant-herbivore dynamics. Specifically, considerable evidence suggests that toxins set upper limits on food intake for many species of herbivorous vertebrates. Herbivores feeding on toxin-containing plants must avoid saturating their detoxification systems, which often occurs before ingestion rates are limited by mechanical handling of food items. In light of the importance of plant toxins, a new approach is needed to link herbivores to their food base. We discuss necessary features of such an approach, note recent advances in herbivore functional response models that incorporate effects of plant toxins, and mention predictions that are consistent with observations in natural systems. Future ecological studies will need to address explicitly the importance of plant toxins in shaping plant and herbivore communities.

  13. Troublesome toxins: Time to re-think plant-herbivore interactions in vertebrate ecology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Swihart, R.K.; DeAngelis, D.L.; Feng, Z.; Bryant, J.P.

    2009-01-01

    Earlier models of plant-herbivore interactions relied on forms of functional response that related rates of ingestion by herbivores to mechanical or physical attributes such as bite size and rate. These models fail to predict a growing number of findings that implicate chemical toxins as important determinants of plant-herbivore dynamics. Specifically, considerable evidence suggests that toxins set upper limits on food intake for many species of herbivorous vertebrates. Herbivores feeding on toxin-containing plants must avoid saturating their detoxification systems, which often occurs before ingestion rates are limited by mechanical handling of food items. In light of the importance of plant toxins, a new approach is needed to link herbivores to their food base. We discuss necessary features of such an approach, note recent advances in herbivore functional response models that incorporate effects of plant toxins, and mention predictions that are consistent with observations in natural systems. Future ecological studies will need to address explicitly the importance of plant toxins in shaping plant and herbivore communities.

  14. Plant defenses against parasitic plants show similarities to those induced by herbivores and pathogens

    Science.gov (United States)

    Runyon, Justin B; Mescher, Mark C

    2010-01-01

    Herbivores and pathogens come quickly to mind when one thinks of the biotic challenges faced by plants. Important but less appreciated enemies are parasitic plants, which can have important consequences for the fitness and survival of their hosts. Our knowledge of plant perception, signaling and response to herbivores and pathogens has expanded rapidly in recent years, but information is generally lacking for parasitic species. In a recent paper we reported that some of the same defense responses induced by herbivores and pathogens—notably increases in jasmonic acid (JA), salicylic acid (SA), and a hypersensitive-like response (HLR)—also occur in tomato plants upon attack by the parasitic plant Cuscuta pentagona (field dodder). Parasitism induced a distinct pattern of JA and SA accumulation, and growth trials using genetically-altered tomato hosts suggested that both JA and SA govern effective defenses against the parasite, though the extent of the response varied with host plant age. Here we discuss similarities between the induced responses we observed in response to Cuscuta parasitism to those previously described for herbivores and pathogens and present new data showing that trichomes should be added to the list of plant defenses that act against multiple enemies and across kingdoms. PMID:20495380

  15. Inter-varietal interactions among plants in genotypically diverse mixtures tend to decrease herbivore performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grettenberger, Ian M; Tooker, John F

    2016-09-01

    Much research has explored the effects of plant species diversity on herbivore populations, but far less has considered effects of plant genotypic diversity, or how abiotic stressors, like drought, can modify effects. Mechanisms by which plant genotypic diversity affects herbivore populations remain largely unresolved. We used greenhouse studies with a model system of wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) and bird cherry-oat aphid (Rhopalosiphum padi L.) to determine whether the genotypic diversity of a plant's neighborhood influences performance and fitness of herbivores on a focal plant and if drought changes the influence of neighborhood diversity. Taken across all varieties we tested, plant-plant interactions in diverse neighborhoods reduced aphid performance and generated associational resistance, although effects on aphids depended on variety identity. In diverse mixtures, drought stress greatly diminished the genotypic diversity-driven reduction in aphid performance. Neighborhood diversity influenced mother aphid size, and appeared to partially explain how plant-plant interactions reduced the number of offspring produced in mixtures. Plant size did not mediate effects on aphid performance, although neighborhood diversity reduced plant mass across varieties and watering treatments. Our results suggest inter-varietal interactions in genotypic mixtures can affect herbivore performance in the absence of herbivore movement and that abiotic stress may diminish any effects. Accounting for how neighborhood diversity influences resistance of an individual plant to herbivores will help aid development of mixtures of varieties for managing insect pests and clarify the role of plant genotypic diversity in ecosystems.

  16. Genetics-based interactions among plants, pathogens, and herbivores define arthropod community structure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Busby, Posy E; Lamit, Louis J; Keith, Arthur R; Newcombe, George; Gehring, Catherine A; Whitham, Thomas G; Dirzo, Rodolfo

    2015-07-01

    Plant resistance to pathogens or insect herbivores is common, but its potential for indirectly influencing plant-associated communities is poorly known. Here, we test whether pathogens' indirect effects on arthropod communities and herbivory depend on plant resistance to pathogens and/or herbivores, and address the overarching interacting foundation species hypothesis that genetics-based interactions among a few highly interactive species can structure a much larger community. In a manipulative field experiment using replicated genotypes of two Populus species and their interspecific hybrids, we found that genetic variation in plant resistance to both pathogens and insect herbivores modulated the strength of pathogens' indirect effects on arthropod communities and insect herbivory. First, due in part to the pathogens' differential impacts on leaf biomass among the two Populus species and the hybrids, the pathogen most strongly impacted arthropod community composition, richness, and abundance on the pathogen-susceptible tree species. Second, we found similar patterns comparing pathogen-susceptible and pathogen-resistant genotypes within species. Third, within a plant species, pathogens caused a fivefold greater reduction in herbivory on insect-herbivore-susceptible plant genotypes than on herbivore-resistant genotypes, demonstrating that the pathogen-herbivore interaction is genotype dependent. We conclude that interactions among plants, pathogens, and herbivores can structure multitrophic communities, supporting the interacting foundation species hypothesis. Because these interactions are genetically based, evolutionary changes in genetic resistance could result in ecological changes in associated communities, which may in turn feed back to affect plant fitness.

  17. Evolutionary dynamics of interactions between plants and their enemies: comparison of herbivorous insects and pathogens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wininger, Kerry; Rank, Nathan

    2017-11-01

    Plants colonized land over 400 million years ago. Shortly thereafter, organisms began to consume terrestrial plant tissue as a nutritional resource. Most plant enemies are plant pathogens or herbivores, and they impose natural selection for plants to evolve defenses. These traits generate selection pressures on enemies. Coevolution between terrestrial plants and their enemies is an important element of the evolutionary history of both groups. However, coevolutionary studies of plant-pathogen interactions have tended to focus on different research topics than plant-herbivore interactions. Specifically, studies of plant-pathogen interactions often adopt a "gene-for-gene" conceptual framework. In contrast, studies of plants and herbivores often investigate escalation or elaboration of plant defense and herbivore adaptations to overcome it. The main exceptions to the general pattern are studies that focus on small, sessile herbivores that share many features with plant pathogens, studies that incorporate both herbivores and pathogens into a single investigation, and studies that test aspects of Thompson's geographic mosaic theory for coevolution. We discuss the implications of these findings for future research. © 2017 New York Academy of Sciences.

  18. Plant genotypes affect aboveground and belowground herbivore interactions by changing chemical defense.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Xiaoqiong; Guo, Wenfeng; Siemann, Evan; Wen, Yuanguang; Huang, Wei; Ding, Jianqing

    2016-12-01

    Spatially separated aboveground (AG) and belowground (BG) herbivores are closely linked through shared host plants, and both patterns of AG-BG interactions and plant responses may vary among plant genotypes. We subjected invasive (USA) and native (China) genotypes of tallow tree (Triadica sebifera) to herbivory by the AG specialist leaf-rolling weevil Heterapoderopsis bicallosicollis and/or the root-feeding larvae of flea beetle Bikasha collaris. We measured leaf damage and leaves rolled by weevils, quantified beetle survival, and analyzed flavonoid and tannin concentrations in leaves and roots. AG and BG herbivores formed negative feedbacks on both native and invasive genotypes. Leaf damage by weevils and the number of beetle larvae emerging as adults were higher on invasive genotypes. Beetles reduced weevil damage and weevils reduced beetle larval emergence more strongly for invasive genotypes. Invasive genotypes had lower leaf and root tannins than native genotypes. BG beetles decreased leaf tannins of native genotypes but increased root tannins of invasive genotypes. AG herbivory increased root flavonoids of invasive genotypes while BG herbivory decreased leaf flavonoids. Invasive genotypes had lower AG and BG herbivore resistance, and negative AG-BG herbivore feedbacks were much stronger for invasive genotypes. Lower tannin concentrations explained overall better AG and BG herbivore performances on invasive genotypes. However, changes in tannins and flavonoids affected AG and BG herbivores differently. These results suggest that divergent selection on chemical production in invasive plants may be critical in regulating herbivore performances and novel AG and BG herbivore communities in new environments.

  19. Jasmonate-deficient plants have reduced direct and indirect defences against herbivores

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Thaler, J.S.; Farag, M.A.; Paré, P.W.; Dicke, M.

    2002-01-01

    Plants employ a variety of defence mechanisms, some of which act directly by having a negative effect on herbivores and others that act indirectly by attracting natural enemies of herbivores. In this study we asked if a common jasmonate-signalling pathway links the regulation of direct and indirect

  20. Direct and indirect plant defenses are not suppressed by endosymbionts of a specialist root herbivore

    Science.gov (United States)

    Insect endosymbionts influence many important metabolic and developmental processes of their host. It has been speculated that they may also help to manipulate and suppress plant defenses to the benefit of herbivores. Recently, endosymbionts of the root herbivore Diabrotica virgifera virgifera have ...

  1. Early herbivore alert matters: plant-mediated effects of egg deposition on higher trophic levels benefit plant fitness

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pashalidou, F.G.; Frago, E.; Griese, E.; Poelman, E.H.; Loon, van J.J.A.; Dicke, M.; Fatouros, N.E.

    2015-01-01

    Induction of plant defences, specifically in response to herbivore attack, can save costs that would otherwise be needed to maintain defences even in the absence of herbivores. However, plants may suffer considerable damage during the time required to mount these defences against an attacker. This

  2. A specialist root herbivore reduces plant resistance and uses an induced plant volatile to aggregate in a density dependent manner

    Science.gov (United States)

    1. Leaf-herbivore attack often triggers induced resistance in plants. However, certain specialist herbivores can also take advantage of the induced metabolic changes. In some cases, they even manipulate plant resistance, leading to a phenomenon called induced susceptibility. Compared to above-ground...

  3. Leaf absorption of mineral nutrients in carnivorous plants stimulates root nutrient uptake

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Adamec, Lubomír

    2002-01-01

    Roč. 155, - (2002), s. 89-100 ISSN 0028-646X R&D Projects: GA AV ČR IAA6005905 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z6005908 Keywords : terrestrial carnivorous plant s * utilization of prey * mineral nutrient re-utilization * leaf nutrient supply Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 2.945, year: 2002

  4. Foliar mineral nutrient uptake in carnivorous plants: What do we know and what should we know?

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Adamec, Lubomír

    2013-01-01

    Roč. 4, č. 10 (2013), s. 1-3 ISSN 1664-462X R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GAP504/11/0783 Institutional support: RVO:67985939 Keywords : terrestrial and aquatic carnivorous plant s * stimulation of root nutrient uptake * Utricularia traps Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 3.637, year: 2013

  5. Ecophysiological characterization of carnivorous plant roots: oxygen fluxes, respiration, and water exudation

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Adamec, Lubomír

    2005-01-01

    Roč. 49, č. 2 (2005), s. 247-255 ISSN 0006-3134 R&D Projects: GA AV ČR(CZ) IAA6005909 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z6005908 Keywords : terrestrial carnivorous plants * soil anoxia * Genlisea traps Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 0.792, year: 2005

  6. Ecophysiological traits of terrestrial and aquatic carnivorous plants: are the costs and benefits the same?

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Ellison, A. M.; Adamec, Lubomír

    2011-01-01

    Roč. 120, č. 11 (2011), 1721-1731 ISSN 0030-1299 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516 Keywords : terrestrial and aquatic carnivorous plants * photosynthesis * mineral nutrition Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 3.061, year: 2011

  7. Describing a multitrophic plant-herbivore-parasitoid system at four spatial scales

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cuautle, M.; Parra-Tabla, V.

    2014-02-01

    Herbivore-parasitoid interactions must be studied using a multitrophic and multispecies approach. The strength and direction of multiple effects through trophic levels may change across spatial scales. In this work, we use the herbaceous plant Ruellia nudiflora, its moth herbivore Tripudia quadrifera, and several parasitoid morphospecies that feed on the herbivore to answer the following questions: Do herbivore and parasitoid attack levels vary depending on the spatial scale considered? With which plant characteristics are the parasitoid and the herbivore associated? Do parasitoid morphospecies vary in the magnitude of their positive indirect effect on plant reproduction? We evaluated three approximations of herbivore and parasitoid abundance (raw numbers, ratios, and attack rates) at four spatial scales: regional (three different regions which differ in terms of abiotic and biotic characteristics); population (i.e. four populations within each region); patch (four 1 m2 plots in each population); and plant level (using a number of plant characteristics). Finally, we determined whether parasitoids have a positive indirect effect on plant reproductive success (seed number). Herbivore and parasitoid numbers differed at three of the spatial scales considered. However, herbivore/fruit ratio and attack rates did not differ at the population level. Parasitoid/host ratio and attack rates did not differ at any scale, although there was a tendency of a higher attack in one region. At the plant level, herbivore and parasitoid abundances were related to different plant traits, varying the importance and the direction (positive or negative) of those traits. In addition, only one parasitoid species (Bracon sp.) had a positive effect on plant fitness saving up to 20% of the seeds in a fruit. These results underline the importance of knowing the scales that are relevant to organisms at different trophic levels and distinguish between the specific effects of species.

  8. Prioritizing plant defence over growth through WRKY regulation facilitates infestation by non-target herbivores

    OpenAIRE

    Li, Ran; Zhang, Jin; Li, Jiancai; Zhou, Guoxin; Wang, Qi; Bian, Wenbo; Erb, Matthias; Lou, Yonggen

    2015-01-01

    eLife digest Many different animals feed on plants, including almost half of all known insect species. Some herbivores?like caterpillars for example?feed by chewing. Others, such as aphids and planthoppers, use syringe-like mouthparts to pierce plants and then feed on the fluids within. To minimize the damage caused by these herbivores, plants activate specific defenses upon attack, including proteins that can inhibit the insect's digestive enzymes. The inhibitors are effective against chewin...

  9. Non-Host Plant Volatiles Disrupt Sex Pheromone Communication in a Specialist Herbivore

    OpenAIRE

    Wang, Fumin; Deng, Jianyu; Schal, Coby; Lou, Yonggen; Zhou, Guoxin; Ye, Bingbing; Yin, Xiaohui; Xu, Zhihong; Shen, Lize

    2016-01-01

    The ecological effects of plant volatiles on herbivores are manifold. Little is known, however, about the impacts of non-host plant volatiles on intersexual pheromonal communication in specialist herbivores. We tested the effects of several prominent constitutive terpenoids released by conifers and Eucalyptus trees on electrophysiological and behavioral responses of an oligophagous species, Plutella xylostella, which feeds on Brassicaceae. The non-host plant volatile terpenoids adversely affe...

  10. Herbivore-specific, density-dependent induction of plant volatiles: honest or "cry wolf" signals?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kaori Shiojiri

    Full Text Available Plants release volatile chemicals upon attack by herbivorous arthropods. They do so commonly in a dose-dependent manner: the more herbivores, the more volatiles released. The volatiles attract predatory arthropods and the amount determines the probability of predator response. We show that seedlings of a cabbage variety (Brassica oleracea var. capitata, cv Shikidori also show such a response to the density of cabbage white (Pieris rapae larvae and attract more (naive parasitoids (Cotesia glomerata when there are more herbivores on the plant. However, when attacked by diamondback moth (Plutella xylostella larvae, seedlings of the same variety (cv Shikidori release volatiles, the total amount of which is high and constant and thus independent of caterpillar density, and naive parasitoids (Cotesia vestalis of diamondback moth larvae fail to discriminate herbivore-rich from herbivore-poor plants. In contrast, seedlings of another cabbage variety of B. oleracea (var. acephala: kale respond in a dose-dependent manner to the density of diamondback moth larvae and attract more parasitoids when there are more herbivores. Assuming these responses of the cabbage cultivars reflect behaviour of at least some genotypes of wild plants, we provide arguments why the behaviour of kale (B. oleracea var acephala is best interpreted as an honest signaling strategy and that of cabbage cv Shikidori (B. oleracea var capitata as a "cry wolf" signaling strategy, implying a conflict of interest between the plant and the enemies of its herbivores: the plant profits from being visited by the herbivore's enemies, but the latter would be better off by visiting other plants with more herbivores. If so, evolutionary theory on alarm signaling predicts consequences of major interest to students of plant protection, tritrophic systems and communication alike.

  11. Anomalous dependence of population growth on the birth rate in the plant-herbivore system

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cui, Xue M.; Han, Seung K.; Chung, Jean S.

    2010-01-01

    We performed a simulation of the two-species plant-herbivore system by using the agent-based NetLogo program and constructed a dynamic model of populations consistent with the simulation results. The dynamic model is a three-dimensional system including the mean energy of the herbivore in addition to two variables denoting the populations of plants and herbivores. A steady-state analysis of the dynamic model shows that the dependence of the herbivore population on the birth and the death rates observed from the agent model is consistent with the prediction of the dynamic model. Especially, the anomalous dependence of the herbivore population on the birth rate, where the population decreases with the birth rate for small death rate, is consistently explained by a phase plane analysis of the dynamic model.

  12. Capturing Insects and Student Interest: First Graders Learn about Unusual Plants in Their Area in This Multimodal Investigation of Carnivorous Plants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bradbury, Leslie; Wilson, Rachel; Pepper, Nancy; Ledford, Mitzi

    2016-01-01

    Most plants are able to obtain all of the nutrients that they need from air, water, and soil; however, this is not true of carnivorous plants. Because they tend to live in boggy soils where there are small amounts of nitrogen, carnivorous plants have developed specialized structures that enable them to lure and capture insects and sometimes other…

  13. Phylogenetic composition of host plant communities drives plant-herbivore food web structure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Volf, Martin; Pyszko, Petr; Abe, Tomokazu; Libra, Martin; Kotásková, Nela; Šigut, Martin; Kumar, Rajesh; Kaman, Ondřej; Butterill, Philip T; Šipoš, Jan; Abe, Haruka; Fukushima, Hiroaki; Drozd, Pavel; Kamata, Naoto; Murakami, Masashi; Novotny, Vojtech

    2017-05-01

    Insects tend to feed on related hosts. The phylogenetic composition of host plant communities thus plays a prominent role in determining insect specialization, food web structure, and diversity. Previous studies showed a high preference of insect herbivores for congeneric and confamilial hosts suggesting that some levels of host plant relationships may play more prominent role that others. We aim to quantify the effects of host phylogeny on the structure of quantitative plant-herbivore food webs. Further, we identify specific patterns in three insect guilds with different life histories and discuss the role of host plant phylogeny in maintaining their diversity. We studied herbivore assemblages in three temperate forests in Japan and the Czech Republic. Sampling from a canopy crane, a cherry picker and felled trees allowed a complete census of plant-herbivore interactions within three 0·1 ha plots for leaf chewing larvae, miners, and gallers. We analyzed the effects of host phylogeny by comparing the observed food webs with randomized models of host selection. Larval leaf chewers exhibited high generality at all three sites, whereas gallers and miners were almost exclusively monophagous. Leaf chewer generality dropped rapidly when older host lineages (5-80 myr) were collated into a single lineage but only decreased slightly when the most closely related congeneric hosts were collated. This shows that leaf chewer generality has been maintained by feeding on confamilial hosts while only a few herbivores were shared between more distant plant lineages and, surprisingly, between some congeneric hosts. In contrast, miner and galler generality was maintained mainly by the terminal nodes of the host phylogeny and dropped immediately after collating congeneric hosts into single lineages. We show that not all levels of host plant phylogeny are equal in their effect on structuring plant-herbivore food webs. In the case of generalist guilds, it is the phylogeny of deeper

  14. Herbivore-plant interactions: mixed-function oxidases and secondary plant substances.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brattsten, L B; Wilkinson, C F; Eisner, T

    1977-06-17

    The mixed-function oxidases of a polyphagous insect larva (the southern armyworm, Spodoptera eridania) were found to be induced by a diversity of secondary plant substances. The induction proceeds rapidly and in response to a small quantity of secondary substance. Following induction, the larva is less susceptible to dietary poisoning. It is argued that mixed-function oxidases play a major role in protecting herbivores against chemical stress from secondary plant substances.

  15. Interactions among predators and plant specificity protect herbivores from top predators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bosc, Christopher; Pauw, Anton; Roets, Francois; Hui, Cang

    2018-05-04

    The worldwide loss of top predators from natural and agricultural systems has heightened the need to understand how important they are in controlling herbivore abundance. The effect of top predators on herbivore species is likely to depend on 1) the importance of the consumption of intermediate predators by top predators (intra-guild predation; IGP), but also on 2) plant specificity by herbivores, because specialists may defend themselves better (enemy-free space; EFS). Insectivorous birds, as top predators, are generally known to effectively control herbivorous insects, despite also consuming intermediate predators such as spiders, but how this effect varies among herbivore species in relation to the cascading effects of IGP and EFS is not known. To explore this, we excluded birds from natural fynbos vegetation in South Africa using large netted cages and recorded changes in abundance relative to control plots for 199 plant-dwelling intermediate predator and 341 herbivore morpho-species that varied in their estimated plant specificity. We found a strong negative effect of birds on the total abundance of all intermediate predators, with especially clear effects on spiders (strong IGP). In contrast with previous studies, which document a negative effect of birds on herbivores, we found an overall neutral effect of birds on herbivore abundance, but the effect varied among species: some species were negatively affected by birds, suggesting that they were mainly consumed by birds, whereas others, likely released from spiders by IGP, were positively affected. Some species were also effectively neutrally affected by birds. These tended to be more specialized to plants compared to the other species, which may imply that some plant specialists benefited from protection provided by EFS from both birds and spiders. These results suggest that the response of herbivore species to top predators may depend on cascading effects of interactions among predators and on their degree

  16. Phytochemical studies and biological activity of carnivorous plants from the Mediterranean region

    OpenAIRE

    Grevenstuk, Tomás

    2010-01-01

    Tese de doutoramento, Ciências Biotecnológicas (Biotecnologia Vegetal), Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia, Universidade do Algarve, 2010 In this thesis several studies were conducted with four carnivorous plant species which occur on Portuguese territory: Pinguicula lusitanica, Pinguicula vulgaris, Drosera intermedia and Drosera rotundifolia. Most habitats of these plants are threatened and natural populations are scarce, therefore micropropagation protocols were developed to ...

  17. Potential Use of Native and Naturalized Insect Herbivores and Fungal Pathogens of Aquatic and Wetland Plants

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Freedman, Jan E; Grodowitz, Michael J; Swindle, Robin; Nachtrieb, Julie G

    2007-01-01

    ...) scientists to identify naturalized and/or native herbivores of aquatic plants in an effort to develop alternative management strategies through an understanding of the agents' biology and ecology...

  18. Nitrogen deposition and prey nitrogen uptake control the nutrition of the carnivorous plant Drosera rotundifolia

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Millett, J., E-mail: j.millett@lboro.ac.uk [Centre for Hydrological and Ecosystem Science, Department of Geography, Loughborough University, Loughborough LE11 3TU (United Kingdom); Foot, G.W. [Centre for Hydrological and Ecosystem Science, Department of Geography, Loughborough University, Loughborough LE11 3TU (United Kingdom); Svensson, B.M. [Department of Plant Ecology and Evolution, Uppsala University, Norbyvägen 18 D, SE-752 36 Uppsala (Sweden)

    2015-04-15

    Nitrogen (N) deposition has important negative impacts on natural and semi-natural ecosystems, impacting on biotic interactions across trophic levels. Low-nutrient systems are particularly sensitive to changes in N inputs and are therefore more vulnerable to N deposition. Carnivorous plants are often part of these ecosystems partly because of the additional nutrients obtained from prey. We studied the impact of N deposition on the nutrition of the carnivorous plant Drosera rotundifolia growing on 16 ombrotrophic bogs across Europe. We measured tissue N, phosphorus (P) and potassium (K) concentrations and prey and root N uptake using a natural abundance stable isotope approach. Our aim was to test the impact of N deposition on D. rotundifolia prey and root N uptake, and nutrient stoichiometry. D. rotundifolia root N uptake was strongly affected by N deposition, possibly resulting in reduced N limitation. The contribution of prey N to the N contained in D. rotundifolia ranged from 20 to 60%. N deposition reduced the maximum amount of N derived from prey, but this varied below this maximum. D. rotundifolia tissue N concentrations were a product of both root N availability and prey N uptake. Increased prey N uptake was correlated with increased tissue P concentrations indicating uptake of P from prey. N deposition therefore reduced the strength of a carnivorous plant–prey interaction, resulting in a reduction in nutrient transfer between trophic levels. We suggest that N deposition has a negative impact on D. rotundifolia and that responses to N deposition might be strongly site specific. - Highlights: • We measured nutrition of the carnivorous plant Drosera rotundifolia across Europe. • We measured tissue nutrient concentrations and prey and root N uptake at 16 sites. • Tissue N concentrations were a product of root N availability and prey N uptake. • N deposition reduced the maximum amount of N derived from prey. • N deposition reduced the strength of a

  19. Nitrogen deposition and prey nitrogen uptake control the nutrition of the carnivorous plant Drosera rotundifolia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Millett, J.; Foot, G.W.; Svensson, B.M.

    2015-01-01

    Nitrogen (N) deposition has important negative impacts on natural and semi-natural ecosystems, impacting on biotic interactions across trophic levels. Low-nutrient systems are particularly sensitive to changes in N inputs and are therefore more vulnerable to N deposition. Carnivorous plants are often part of these ecosystems partly because of the additional nutrients obtained from prey. We studied the impact of N deposition on the nutrition of the carnivorous plant Drosera rotundifolia growing on 16 ombrotrophic bogs across Europe. We measured tissue N, phosphorus (P) and potassium (K) concentrations and prey and root N uptake using a natural abundance stable isotope approach. Our aim was to test the impact of N deposition on D. rotundifolia prey and root N uptake, and nutrient stoichiometry. D. rotundifolia root N uptake was strongly affected by N deposition, possibly resulting in reduced N limitation. The contribution of prey N to the N contained in D. rotundifolia ranged from 20 to 60%. N deposition reduced the maximum amount of N derived from prey, but this varied below this maximum. D. rotundifolia tissue N concentrations were a product of both root N availability and prey N uptake. Increased prey N uptake was correlated with increased tissue P concentrations indicating uptake of P from prey. N deposition therefore reduced the strength of a carnivorous plant–prey interaction, resulting in a reduction in nutrient transfer between trophic levels. We suggest that N deposition has a negative impact on D. rotundifolia and that responses to N deposition might be strongly site specific. - Highlights: • We measured nutrition of the carnivorous plant Drosera rotundifolia across Europe. • We measured tissue nutrient concentrations and prey and root N uptake at 16 sites. • Tissue N concentrations were a product of root N availability and prey N uptake. • N deposition reduced the maximum amount of N derived from prey. • N deposition reduced the strength of a

  20. Application of radiotracers in an exotic field of botany. How to feed carnivorous plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Steinhauser, G.; Musilek, A.; Sterba, J.H.; Bichler, M.; Adlassnig, W.; Peroutka, M.; Lichtscheidl, I.K.

    2007-01-01

    In this paper, methods for the application of radiotracers in the Cobra Lily (Darlingtonia californica), a carnivorous pitcher plant, are described. The uptake of radiotracers such as 42 K and 54 Mn into the pitcher trap in aqueous solution could be proven, whereas uptake of 59 Fe ions could not be observed. No-carrier-added 54 Mn was taken up by the plants, regardless of extremely low concentrations. In contrast to earlier experiments using 14 C and 15 N-based tracers, the methodology presented allows quick, simple and reliable quantification of the nutrient uptake. The results of our experiments lead to a deeper biological understanding concerning the trace element household of this carnivorous plant and the absorption of micro- and macronutrients from trapped prey. (author)

  1. Bats Are Acoustically Attracted to Mutualistic Carnivorous Plants

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schöner, Michael G; Schöner, Caroline R; Simon, Ralph; Grafe, T Ulmar; Puechmaille, Sébastien J; Ji, Liaw Lin; Kerth, Gerald

    2015-01-01

    Mutualisms between plants and animals shape the world's ecosystems. In such interactions, achieving contact with the partner species is imperative. Plants regularly advertise themselves with signals that specifically appeal to the partner's perceptual preferences. For example, many plants have

  2. Contrasting effects of land use intensity and exotic host plants on the specialization of interactions in plant-herbivore networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Araújo, Walter Santos; Vieira, Marcos Costa; Lewinsohn, Thomas M; Almeida-Neto, Mário

    2015-01-01

    Human land use tends to decrease the diversity of native plant species and facilitate the invasion and establishment of exotic ones. Such changes in land use and plant community composition usually have negative impacts on the assemblages of native herbivorous insects. Highly specialized herbivores are expected to be especially sensitive to land use intensification and the presence of exotic plant species because they are neither capable of consuming alternative plant species of the native flora nor exotic plant species. Therefore, higher levels of land use intensity might reduce the proportion of highly specialized herbivores, which ultimately would lead to changes in the specialization of interactions in plant-herbivore networks. This study investigates the community-wide effects of land use intensity on the degree of specialization of 72 plant-herbivore networks, including effects mediated by the increase in the proportion of exotic plant species. Contrary to our expectation, the net effect of land use intensity on network specialization was positive. However, this positive effect of land use intensity was partially canceled by an opposite effect of the proportion of exotic plant species on network specialization. When we analyzed networks composed exclusively of endophagous herbivores separately from those composed exclusively of exophagous herbivores, we found that only endophages showed a consistent change in network specialization at higher land use levels. Altogether, these results indicate that land use intensity is an important ecological driver of network specialization, by way of reducing the local host range of herbivore guilds with highly specialized feeding habits. However, because the effect of land use intensity is offset by an opposite effect owing to the proportion of exotic host species, the net effect of land use in a given herbivore assemblage will likely depend on the extent of the replacement of native host species with exotic ones.

  3. Virus infection decreases the attractiveness of white clover plants for a non-vectoring herbivore

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    van Mölken, Tamara; Caluwe, Hannie de; Hordijk, Cornelis A.

    2012-01-01

    Plant pathogens and insect herbivores are prone to share hosts under natural conditions. Consequently, pathogen-induced changes in the host plant can affect herbivory, and vice versa. Even though plant viruses are ubiquitous in the field, little is known about plant-mediated interactions between ...

  4. Resting electrical network activity in traps of the aquatic carnivorous plants of the genera Aldrovanda and Utricularia

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Masi, E.; Ciszak, M.; Colzi, I.; Adamec, Lubomír; Mancuso, S.

    2016-01-01

    Roč. 6, e24989 (2016), s. 1-11 ISSN 2045-2322 Institutional support: RVO:67985939 Keywords : electrophysiology * multielectrode array * aquatic carnivorous plants Subject RIV: ED - Physiology Impact factor: 4.259, year: 2016

  5. Effective prey attraction in the rare Drosophyllum lusitanicum, a flypaper-trap carnivorous plant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bertol, Nils; Paniw, Maria; Ojeda, Fernando

    2015-05-01

    Carnivorous plants have unusually modified leaves to trap insects as an adaptation to low-nutrient environments. Disparate mechanisms have been suggested as luring traits to attract prey insects into their deadly leaves, ranging from very elaborate to none at all. Drosophyllum lusitanicum is a rare carnivorous plant with a common flypaper-trap mechanism. Here we tested whether Drosophyllum plants lure prey insects into their leaves or they act just as passive traps. We compared prey capture between live, potted plants and Drosophyllum-shaped artificial mimics coated with odorless glue. Since this species is insect-pollinated, we also explored the possible existence of a pollinator-prey conflict by quantifying the similarity between the pollination and prey guilds in a natural population. All experiments were done in southern Spain. The sticky leaves of Drosophyllum captured significantly more prey than mimics, particularly small dipterans. Prey attraction, likely exerted by scent or visual cues, seems to be unrelated to pollinator attraction by flowers, as inferred from the low similarity between pollinator and prey insect faunas found in this species. Our results illustrate the effectiveness of this carnivorous species at attracting insects to their flypaper-trap leaves. © 2015 Botanical Society of America, Inc.

  6. Mechanisms and ecological consequences of plant defence induction and suppression in herbivore communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kant, M R; Jonckheere, W; Knegt, B; Lemos, F; Liu, J; Schimmel, B C J; Villarroel, C A; Ataide, L M S; Dermauw, W; Glas, J J; Egas, M; Janssen, A; Van Leeuwen, T; Schuurink, R C; Sabelis, M W; Alba, J M

    2015-06-01

    Plants are hotbeds for parasites such as arthropod herbivores, which acquire nutrients and energy from their hosts in order to grow and reproduce. Hence plants are selected to evolve resistance, which in turn selects for herbivores that can cope with this resistance. To preserve their fitness when attacked by herbivores, plants can employ complex strategies that include reallocation of resources and the production of defensive metabolites and structures. Plant defences can be either prefabricated or be produced only upon attack. Those that are ready-made are referred to as constitutive defences. Some constitutive defences are operational at any time while others require activation. Defences produced only when herbivores are present are referred to as induced defences. These can be established via de novo biosynthesis of defensive substances or via modifications of prefabricated substances and consequently these are active only when needed. Inducibility of defence may serve to save energy and to prevent self-intoxication but also implies that there is a delay in these defences becoming operational. Induced defences can be characterized by alterations in plant morphology and molecular chemistry and are associated with a decrease in herbivore performance. These alterations are set in motion by signals generated by herbivores. Finally, a subset of induced metabolites are released into the air as volatiles and function as a beacon for foraging natural enemies searching for prey, and this is referred to as induced indirect defence. The objective of this review is to evaluate (1) which strategies plants have evolved to cope with herbivores and (2) which traits herbivores have evolved that enable them to counter these defences. The primary focus is on the induction and suppression of plant defences and the review outlines how the palette of traits that determine induction/suppression of, and resistance/susceptibility of herbivores to, plant defences can give rise to

  7. By which mechanism does prey capture enhance plant growth in aquatic carnivorous plants: Stimulation of shoot apex?

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Adamec, Lubomír

    2011-01-01

    Roč. 178, č. 2 (2011), s. 171-176 ISSN 1863-9135 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516 Keywords : aquatic carnivorous plants * dark respiration * tissue N and P content Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 1.145, year: 2011

  8. Plant age, communication, and resistance to herbivores: young sagebrush plants are better emitters and receivers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shiojiri, Kaori; Karban, Richard

    2006-08-01

    Plants progress through a series of distinct stages during development, although the role of plant ontogeny in their defenses against herbivores is poorly understood. Recent work indicates that many plants activate systemic induced resistance after herbivore attack, although the relationship between resistance and ontogeny has not been a focus of this work. In addition, for sagebrush and a few other species, individuals near neighbors that experience simulated herbivory become more resistant to subsequent attack. Volatile, airborne cues are required for both systemic induced resistance among branches and for communication among individuals. We conducted experiments in stands of sagebrush of mixed ages to determine effects of plant age on volatile signaling between branches and individuals. Young and old control plants did not differ in levels of chewing damage that they experienced. Systemic induced resistance among branches was only observed for young plants. Young plants showed strong evidence of systemic resistance only if airflow was permitted among branches; plants with only vascular connections showed no systemic resistance. We also found evidence for volatile communication between individuals. For airborne communication, young plants were more effective emitters of cues as well as more responsive receivers of volatile cues.

  9. Mechanisms and ecological consequences of plant defence induction and suppression in herbivore communities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kant, M. R.; Jonckheere, W.; Knegt, B.; Lemos, F.; Liu, J.; Schimmel, B. C. J.; Villarroel, C. A.; Ataide, L. M. S.; Dermauw, W.; Glas, J. J.; Egas, M.; Janssen, A.; Van Leeuwen, T.; Schuurink, R. C.; Sabelis, M. W.; Alba, J. M.

    2015-01-01

    Background Plants are hotbeds for parasites such as arthropod herbivores, which acquire nutrients and energy from their hosts in order to grow and reproduce. Hence plants are selected to evolve resistance, which in turn selects for herbivores that can cope with this resistance. To preserve their fitness when attacked by herbivores, plants can employ complex strategies that include reallocation of resources and the production of defensive metabolites and structures. Plant defences can be either prefabricated or be produced only upon attack. Those that are ready-made are referred to as constitutive defences. Some constitutive defences are operational at any time while others require activation. Defences produced only when herbivores are present are referred to as induced defences. These can be established via de novo biosynthesis of defensive substances or via modifications of prefabricated substances and consequently these are active only when needed. Inducibility of defence may serve to save energy and to prevent self-intoxication but also implies that there is a delay in these defences becoming operational. Induced defences can be characterized by alterations in plant morphology and molecular chemistry and are associated with a decrease in herbivore performance. These alterations are set in motion by signals generated by herbivores. Finally, a subset of induced metabolites are released into the air as volatiles and function as a beacon for foraging natural enemies searching for prey, and this is referred to as induced indirect defence. Scope The objective of this review is to evaluate (1) which strategies plants have evolved to cope with herbivores and (2) which traits herbivores have evolved that enable them to counter these defences. The primary focus is on the induction and suppression of plant defences and the review outlines how the palette of traits that determine induction/suppression of, and resistance/susceptibility of herbivores to, plant defences can

  10. Adaptive evolution of cytochrome c oxidase: Infrastructure for a carnivorous plant radiation

    OpenAIRE

    Jobson, Richard W.; Nielsen, Rasmus; Laakkonen, Liisa; Wikström, Mårten; Albert, Victor A.

    2004-01-01

    Much recent attention in the study of adaptation of organismal form has centered on developmental regulation. As such, the highly conserved respiratory machinery of eukaryotic cells might seem an unlikely target for selection supporting novel morphologies. We demonstrate that a dramatic molecular evolutionary rate increase in subunit I of cytochrome c oxidase (COX) from an active-trapping lineage of carnivorous plants is caused by positive Darwinian selection. Bladderworts (Utricularia) trap ...

  11. Adaptive radiation with regard to nutrient sequestration strategies in the carnivorous plants of the genus Nepenthes

    OpenAIRE

    Pavlovič, Andrej

    2012-01-01

    Carnivorous pitcher plants of the genus Nepenthes have evolved a great diversity of pitcher morphologies. Selective pressures for maximizing nutrient uptake have driven speciation and diversification of the genus in a process known as adaptive radiation. This leads to the evolution of pitchers adapted to specific and often bizarre source of nutrients, which are not strictly animal-derived. One example is Nepenthes ampullaria with unusual growth pattern and pitcher morphology what enables the ...

  12. Dinitrogen fixation associated with shoots of aquatic carnivorous plants: is it ecologically important?

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Sirová, D.; Šantrůček, Jiří; Adamec, Lubomír; Bárta, J.; Borovec, Jakub; Pech, J.; Owens, S.M.; Šantrůčková, H.; Schaeufele, R.; Štorchová, Helena; Vrba, Jaroslav

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 114, č. 1 (2014), s. 125-133 ISSN 0305-7364 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GAP504/11/0783 Institutional support: RVO:60077344 ; RVO:67985939 ; RVO:61389030 Keywords : Aldrovanda vesiculosa * aquatic carnivorous plants * Utricularia vulgaris * nitrogen fixation Subject RIV: CE - Biochemistry; EF - Botanics (BU-J); EF - Botanics (UEB-Q) Impact factor: 3.654, year: 2014

  13. A pharm-ecological perspective of terrestrial and aquatic plant-herbivore interactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forbey, Jennifer Sorensen; Dearing, M Denise; Gross, Elisabeth M; Orians, Colin M; Sotka, Erik E; Foley, William J

    2013-04-01

    We describe some recent themes in the nutritional and chemical ecology of herbivores and the importance of a broad pharmacological view of plant nutrients and chemical defenses that we integrate as "Pharm-ecology". The central role that dose, concentration, and response to plant components (nutrients and secondary metabolites) play in herbivore foraging behavior argues for broader application of approaches derived from pharmacology to both terrestrial and aquatic plant-herbivore systems. We describe how concepts of pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics are used to better understand the foraging phenotype of herbivores relative to nutrient and secondary metabolites in food. Implementing these concepts into the field remains a challenge, but new modeling approaches that emphasize tradeoffs and the properties of individual animals show promise. Throughout, we highlight similarities and differences between the historic and future applications of pharm-ecological concepts in understanding the ecology and evolution of terrestrial and aquatic interactions between herbivores and plants. We offer several pharm-ecology related questions and hypotheses that could strengthen our understanding of the nutritional and chemical factors that modulate foraging behavior of herbivores across terrestrial and aquatic systems.

  14. Sesquiterpene lactone stereochemistry influences herbivore resistance and plant fitness in the field.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahern, Jeffrey R; Whitney, Kenneth D

    2014-03-01

    Stereochemical variation is widely known to influence the bioactivity of compounds in the context of pharmacology and pesticide science, but our understanding of its importance in mediating plant-herbivore interactions is limited, particularly in field settings. Similarly, sesquiterpene lactones are a broadly distributed class of putative defensive compounds, but little is known about their activities in the field. Natural variation in sesquiterpene lactones of the common cocklebur, Xanthium strumarium (Asteraceae), was used in conjunction with a series of common garden experiments to examine relationships between stereochemical variation, herbivore damage and plant fitness. The stereochemistry of sesquiterpene lactone ring junctions helped to explain variation in plant herbivore resistance. Plants producing cis-fused sesquiterpene lactones experienced significantly higher damage than plants producing trans-fused sesquiterpene lactones. Experiments manipulating herbivore damage above and below ambient levels found that herbivore damage was negatively correlated with plant fitness. This pattern translated into significant fitness differences between chemotypes under ambient levels of herbivore attack, but not when attack was experimentally reduced via pesticide. To our knowledge, this work represents only the second study to examine sesquiterpene lactones as defensive compounds in the field, the first to document herbivore-mediated natural selection on sesquiterpene lactone variation and the first to investigate the ecological significance of the stereochemistry of the lactone ring junction. The results indicate that subtle differences in stereochemistry may be a major determinant of the protective role of secondary metabolites and thus of plant fitness. As stereochemical variation is widespread in many groups of secondary metabolites, these findings suggest the possibility of dynamic evolutionary histories within the Asteraceae and other plant families showing

  15. Trophic Interactions during Primary Succession: Herbivores Slow a Plant Reinvasion at Mount St. Helens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fagan, William F; Bishop, John G

    2000-02-01

    Lupines (Lupinus lepidus var. lobbii), the earliest plant colonists of primary successional habitats at Mount St. Helens, were expected to strongly affect successional trajectories through facilitative effects. However, their effects remain localized because initially high rates of reinvasive spread were short lived, despite widespread habitat availability. We experimentally tested whether insect herbivores, by reducing plant growth and fecundity at the edge of the expanding lupine population, could curtail the rate of reinvasion and whether those herbivores had comparable impacts in the older, more successionally advanced core region. We found that removing insect herbivores increased both the areal growth of individual lupine plants and the production of new plants in the edge region, thereby accelerating the lupine's intrinsic rate of increase at the front of the lupine reinvasion. We found no such impacts of herbivory in the core region, where low plant quality or a complex of recently arrived natural enemies may hold herbivores in check. In the context of invasion theory, herbivore-mediated decreases in lupine population growth rate in the edge region translate into decreased rates of lupine spread, which we quantify here using diffusion models. In the Mount St. Helens system, decreased rate of lupine reinvasion will result in reductions in rates of soil formation, nitrogen input, and entrapment of seeds and detritus that are likely to postpone or alter trajectories of primary succession. If the type of spatial subtleties in herbivore effects we found here are common, with herbivory focused on the edge of an expanding plant population and suppressed or ineffective in the larger, denser central region (where the plants might be more readily noticed and studied), then insect herbivores may have stronger impacts on the dynamics of primary succession and plant invasions than previously recognized.

  16. A below-ground herbivore shapes root defensive chemistry in natural plant populations

    OpenAIRE

    Huber, Meret; Bont, Zoe; Fricke, Julia; Brillatz, Th?o; Aziz, Zohra; Gershenzon, Jonathan; Erb, Matthias

    2016-01-01

    Plants display extensive intraspecific variation in secondary metabolites. However, the selective forces shaping this diversity remain often unknown, especially below ground. Using Taraxacum officinale and its major native insect root herbivore Melolontha melolontha, we tested whether below-ground herbivores drive intraspecific variation in root secondary metabolites. We found that high M. melolontha infestation levels over recent decades are associated with high concentrations of major root ...

  17. Heat shock and plant leachates regulate seed germination of the endangered carnivorous plant Drosophyllum lusitanicum

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. Gómez-González

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available In fire-prone ecosystems, many plant species have specialized mechanisms of seed dormancy that ensure a successful recruitment after fire. A well-documented mechanism is the germination stimulated by fire-related cues, such as heat shock and smoke. However, less is known about the role of inhibitory germination signals (e.g. allelopathy in regulating post-fire recruitment. Plant leachates derived from the unburned vegetation can enforce dormancy by means of allelopathic compounds, acting as a signal of unfavourable (highly competitive niche for germination in pyrophyte species. Here, we assessed the separate effects of heat shock and plant leachates on seed germination of Drosophyllum lusitanicum, an endangered carnivorous plant endemic to Mediterranean fire-prone heathlands. We performed a germination experiment in which seeds were subjected to three treatments: (1 5 min at 100 °C, (2 watering with plant leachate, and (3 control. Germination rate and seed viability was determined after 63 days. Heat shock stimulated seed germination in D. lusitanicum while plant leachates had inhibitory germination effects without reducing seed viability. Thus, both positive and negative signals could be involved in its successful post-fire recruitment. Fire would break seed dormancy and stimulate seed germination of D. lusitanicum through high temperatures, but also by eliminating allelochemical compounds from the soil. These results help to understand the population dynamics patterns found for D. lusitanicum in natural populations, and highlight the role of fire in the ecology and conservation of this endangered species. Seed dormancy imposed by plant-derived leachates as an adaptive mechanism should be considered more in fire ecology theory.

  18. The herbivore-induced plant volatile methyl salicylate negatively affects attraction of the parasitoid Diadegma semiclausum

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Snoeren, T.A.L.; Mumm, R.; Poelman, E.H.; Yang, Y.; Pichersky, E.; Dicke, M.

    2010-01-01

    The indirect defense mechanisms of plants comprise the production of herbivore-induced plant volatiles that can attract natural enemies of plant attackers. One of the often emitted compounds after herbivory is methyl salicylate (MeSA). Here, we studied the importance of this caterpillar-induced

  19. Non-Host Plant Volatiles Disrupt Sex Pheromone Communication in a Specialist Herbivore

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Fumin; Deng, Jianyu; Schal, Coby; Lou, Yonggen; Zhou, Guoxin; Ye, Bingbing; Yin, Xiaohui; Xu, Zhihong; Shen, Lize

    2016-01-01

    The ecological effects of plant volatiles on herbivores are manifold. Little is known, however, about the impacts of non-host plant volatiles on intersexual pheromonal communication in specialist herbivores. We tested the effects of several prominent constitutive terpenoids released by conifers and Eucalyptus trees on electrophysiological and behavioral responses of an oligophagous species, Plutella xylostella, which feeds on Brassicaceae. The non-host plant volatile terpenoids adversely affected the calling behavior (pheromone emission) of adult females, and the orientation responses of adult males to sex pheromone were also significantly inhibited by these terpenoids in a wind tunnel and in the field. We suggest that disruption of both pheromone emission and orientation to sex pheromone may explain, at least in part, an observed reduction in herbivore attack in polyculture compared with monoculture plantings. We also propose that mating disruption of both male and female moths with non-host plant volatiles may be a promising alternative pest management strategy. PMID:27585907

  20. Non-Host Plant Volatiles Disrupt Sex Pheromone Communication in a Specialist Herbivore.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Fumin; Deng, Jianyu; Schal, Coby; Lou, Yonggen; Zhou, Guoxin; Ye, Bingbing; Yin, Xiaohui; Xu, Zhihong; Shen, Lize

    2016-09-02

    The ecological effects of plant volatiles on herbivores are manifold. Little is known, however, about the impacts of non-host plant volatiles on intersexual pheromonal communication in specialist herbivores. We tested the effects of several prominent constitutive terpenoids released by conifers and Eucalyptus trees on electrophysiological and behavioral responses of an oligophagous species, Plutella xylostella, which feeds on Brassicaceae. The non-host plant volatile terpenoids adversely affected the calling behavior (pheromone emission) of adult females, and the orientation responses of adult males to sex pheromone were also significantly inhibited by these terpenoids in a wind tunnel and in the field. We suggest that disruption of both pheromone emission and orientation to sex pheromone may explain, at least in part, an observed reduction in herbivore attack in polyculture compared with monoculture plantings. We also propose that mating disruption of both male and female moths with non-host plant volatiles may be a promising alternative pest management strategy.

  1. Complex effects of fertilization on plant and herbivore performance in the presence of a plant competitor and activated carbon.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mahdavi-Arab, Nafiseh; Meyer, Sebastian T; Mehrparvar, Mohsen; Weisser, Wolfgang W

    2014-01-01

    Plant-herbivore interactions are influenced by host plant quality which in turn is affected by plant growth conditions. Competition is the major biotic and nutrient availability a major abiotic component of a plant's growth environment. Yet, surprisingly few studies have investigated impacts of competition and nutrient availability on herbivore performance and reciprocal herbivore effects on plants. We studied growth of the specialist aphid, Macrosiphoniella tanacetaria, and its host plant tansy, Tanacetum vulgare, under experimental addition of inorganic and organic fertilizer crossed with competition by goldenrod, Solidago canadensis. Because of evidence that competition by goldenrod is mediated by allelopathic compounds, we also added a treatment with activated carbon. Results showed that fertilization increased, and competition with goldenrod decreased, plant biomass, but this was likely mediated by resource competition. There was no evidence from the activated carbon treatment that allelopathy played a role which instead had a fertilizing effect. Aphid performance increased with higher plant biomass and depended on plant growth conditions, with fertilization and AC increasing, and plant competition decreasing aphid numbers. Feedbacks of aphids on plant performance interacted with plant growth conditions in complex ways depending on the relative magnitude of the effects on plant biomass and aphid numbers. In the basic fertilization treatment, tansy plants profited from increased nutrient availability by accumulating more biomass than they lost due to an increased number of aphids under fertilization. When adding additional fertilizer, aphid numbers increased so high that tansy plants suffered and showed reduced biomass compared with controls without aphids. Thus, the ecological cost of an infestation with aphids depends on the balance of effects of growth conditions on plant and herbivore performance. These results emphasize the importance to investigate both

  2. Complex effects of fertilization on plant and herbivore performance in the presence of a plant competitor and activated carbon.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nafiseh Mahdavi-Arab

    Full Text Available Plant-herbivore interactions are influenced by host plant quality which in turn is affected by plant growth conditions. Competition is the major biotic and nutrient availability a major abiotic component of a plant's growth environment. Yet, surprisingly few studies have investigated impacts of competition and nutrient availability on herbivore performance and reciprocal herbivore effects on plants. We studied growth of the specialist aphid, Macrosiphoniella tanacetaria, and its host plant tansy, Tanacetum vulgare, under experimental addition of inorganic and organic fertilizer crossed with competition by goldenrod, Solidago canadensis. Because of evidence that competition by goldenrod is mediated by allelopathic compounds, we also added a treatment with activated carbon. Results showed that fertilization increased, and competition with goldenrod decreased, plant biomass, but this was likely mediated by resource competition. There was no evidence from the activated carbon treatment that allelopathy played a role which instead had a fertilizing effect. Aphid performance increased with higher plant biomass and depended on plant growth conditions, with fertilization and AC increasing, and plant competition decreasing aphid numbers. Feedbacks of aphids on plant performance interacted with plant growth conditions in complex ways depending on the relative magnitude of the effects on plant biomass and aphid numbers. In the basic fertilization treatment, tansy plants profited from increased nutrient availability by accumulating more biomass than they lost due to an increased number of aphids under fertilization. When adding additional fertilizer, aphid numbers increased so high that tansy plants suffered and showed reduced biomass compared with controls without aphids. Thus, the ecological cost of an infestation with aphids depends on the balance of effects of growth conditions on plant and herbivore performance. These results emphasize the importance

  3. Salicylic acid, a plant defense hormone, is specifically secreted by a molluscan herbivore.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kästner, Julia; von Knorre, Dietrich; Himanshu, Himanshu; Erb, Matthias; Baldwin, Ian T; Meldau, Stefan

    2014-01-01

    Slugs and snails are important herbivores in many ecosystems. They differ from other herbivores by their characteristic mucus trail. As the mucus is secreted at the interface between the plants and the herbivores, its chemical composition may play an essential role in plant responses to slug and snail attack. Based on our current knowledge about host-manipulation strategies employed by pathogens and insects, we hypothesized that mollusks may excrete phytohormone-like substances into their mucus. We therefore screened locomotion mucus from thirteen molluscan herbivores for the presence of the plant defense hormones jasmonic acid (JA), salicylic acid (SA) and abscisic acid (ABA). We found that the locomotion mucus of one slug, Deroceras reticulatum, contained significant amounts of SA, a plant hormone that is known to induce resistance to pathogens and to suppress plant immunity against herbivores. None of the other slugs and snails contained SA or any other hormone in their locomotion mucus. When the mucus of D. reticulatum was applied to wounded leaves of A. thaliana, the promotor of the SA-responsive gene pathogenesis related 1 (PR1) was activated, demonstrating the potential of the mucus to regulate plant defenses. We discuss the potential ecological, agricultural and medical implications of this finding.

  4. Salicylic acid, a plant defense hormone, is specifically secreted by a molluscan herbivore.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julia Kästner

    Full Text Available Slugs and snails are important herbivores in many ecosystems. They differ from other herbivores by their characteristic mucus trail. As the mucus is secreted at the interface between the plants and the herbivores, its chemical composition may play an essential role in plant responses to slug and snail attack. Based on our current knowledge about host-manipulation strategies employed by pathogens and insects, we hypothesized that mollusks may excrete phytohormone-like substances into their mucus. We therefore screened locomotion mucus from thirteen molluscan herbivores for the presence of the plant defense hormones jasmonic acid (JA, salicylic acid (SA and abscisic acid (ABA. We found that the locomotion mucus of one slug, Deroceras reticulatum, contained significant amounts of SA, a plant hormone that is known to induce resistance to pathogens and to suppress plant immunity against herbivores. None of the other slugs and snails contained SA or any other hormone in their locomotion mucus. When the mucus of D. reticulatum was applied to wounded leaves of A. thaliana, the promotor of the SA-responsive gene pathogenesis related 1 (PR1 was activated, demonstrating the potential of the mucus to regulate plant defenses. We discuss the potential ecological, agricultural and medical implications of this finding.

  5. Structural breakdown of specialized plant-herbivore interaction networks in tropical forest edges

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bruno Ximenes Pinho

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Plant-herbivore relationships are essential for ecosystem functioning, typically forming an ecological network with a compartmentalized (i.e. modular structure characterized by highly specialized interactions. Human disturbances can favor habitat generalist species and thus cause the collapse of this modular structure, but its effects are rarely assessed using a network-based approach. We investigate how edge proximity alters plant-insect herbivore networks by comparing forest edge and interior in a large remnant (3.500 ha of the Brazilian Atlantic forest. Given the typical dominance of pioneer plants and generalist herbivores in edge-affected habitats, we test the hypothesis that the specialized structure of plant-herbivore networks collapse in forest edges, resulting in lower modularity and herbivore specialization. Despite no differences in the number of species and interactions, the network structure presented marked differences between forest edges and interior. Herbivore specialization, modularity and number of modules were significantly higher in forest interior than edge-affected habitats. When compared to a random null model, two (22.2% and eight (88.8% networks were significantly modular in forest edge and interior, respectively. The loss of specificity and modularity in plant-herbivore networks in forest edges may be related to the loss of important functions, such as density-dependent control of superior plant competitors, which is ultimately responsible for the maintenance of biodiversity and ecosystem functions. Our results support previous warnings that focusing on traditional community measures only (e.g. species diversity may overlook important modifications in species interactions and ecosystem functioning.

  6. Quantification of growth benefit of carnivorous plants from prey

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Adamec, Lubomír

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 46, č. 3 (2017), s. 1-7 ISSN 0190-9215 Institutional support: RVO:67985939 Keywords : mineral cost and benefit * stimulation of roots * growth stimulation Subject RIV: EF - Botanics OBOR OECD: Plant sciences, botany

  7. Tritrophic Interactions Mediated by Herbivore-Induced Plant Volatiles: Mechanisms, Ecological Relevance, and Application Potential.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turlings, Ted C J; Erb, Matthias

    2018-01-07

    Tritrophic interactions between plants, herbivores, and their natural enemies are an integral part of all terrestrial ecosystems. Herbivore-induced plant volatiles (HIPVs) play a key role in these interactions, as they can attract predators and parasitoids to herbivore-attacked plants. Thirty years after this discovery, the ecological importance of the phenomena is widely recognized. However, the primary function of HIPVs is still subject to much debate, as is the possibility of using these plant-produced cues in crop protection. In this review, we summarize the current knowledge on the role of HIPVs in tritrophic interactions from an ecological as well as a mechanistic perspective. This overview focuses on the main gaps in our knowledge of tritrophic interactions, and we argue that filling these gaps will greatly facilitate efforts to exploit HIPVs for pest control.

  8. Induced and constitutive responses of digestive enzymes to plant toxins in an herbivorous mammal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kohl, Kevin D; Dearing, M Denise

    2011-12-15

    Many plants produce plant secondary compounds (PSCs) that bind and inhibit the digestive enzymes of herbivores, thus limiting digestibility for the herbivore. Herbivorous insects employ several physiological responses to overcome the anti-nutritive effects of PSCs. However, studies in vertebrates have not shown such responses, perhaps stemming from the fact that previously studied vertebrates were not herbivorous. The responses of the digestive system to dietary PSCs in populations of Bryant's woodrat (Neotoma bryanti) that vary in their ecological and evolutionary experience with the PSCs in creosote bush (Larrea tridentata) were compared. Individuals from naïve and experienced populations were fed diets with and without added creosote resin. Animals fed diets with creosote resin had higher activities of pancreatic amylase, as well as luminal amylase and chymotrypsin, regardless of prior experience with creosote. The experienced population showed constitutively higher activities of intestinal maltase and sucrase. Additionally, the naïve population produced an aminopeptidase-N enzyme that was less inhibited by creosote resin when feeding on the creosote resin diet, whereas the experienced population constitutively expressed this form of aminopeptidase-N. Thus, the digestive system of an herbivorous vertebrate responds significantly to dietary PSCs, which may be important for allowing herbivorous vertebrates to feed on PSC-rich diets.

  9. Chromosome identification for the carnivorous plant Genlisea margaretae

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Tran, T.D.; Šimková, Hana; Schmidt, R.; Doležel, Jaroslav; Schubert, I.; Fuchs, J.

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 126, č. 3 (2017), s. 389-397 ISSN 0009-5915 R&D Projects: GA MŠk(CZ) LO1204 Institutional support: RVO:61389030 Keywords : BACs * Genlisea * Karyotyping * Multicolor fluorescence in situ hybridization (mcFISH) * Reprobing Subject RIV: EB - Genetics ; Molecular Biology OBOR OECD: Plant sciences, botany Impact factor: 4.414, year: 2016

  10. Climate alters response of an endemic island plant to removal of invasive herbivores

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kathryn, Mceachern A.; Thomson, D.M.; Chess, K.A.

    2009-01-01

    Islands experience higher rates of species extinction than mainland ecosystems, with biological invasions among the leading causes; they also serve as important model systems for testing ideas in basic and applied ecology. Invasive removal programs on islands are conservation efforts that can also be viewed as powerful manipulative experiments, but few data are available to evaluate their effects. We collected demographic and herbivore damage data for Castilleja mollis Pennell, an endangered plant endemic to Santa Rosa Island, California, over a 12-year period before, during, and after the implementation of control for introduced cattle, deer, and elk. We used these long-term data to explore mechanisms underlying herbivore effects, assess the results of herbivore reduction at the scales of both individual plants and populations, and determine how temporal variability in herbivory and plant demography influenced responses to herbivore removals. For individual plants, herbivore effects mediated by disturbance were greater than those of grazing. Deer and elk scraping of the ground substantially increased plant mortality and dormancy and reduced flowering and growth. Stem damage from browsing did not affect survivorship but significantly reduced plant growth and flower production. Herbivore control successfully lowered damage rates, which declined steeply between 1997 and 2000 and have remained relatively low. Castilleja mollis abundances rose sharply after 1997, suggesting a positive effect of herbivore control, but then began to decline steadily again after 2003. The recent decline appears to be driven by higher mean growing season temperatures; interestingly, not only reductions in scraping damage but a period of cooler conditions were significant in explaining increases in C. mollis populations between 1997 and 2002. Our results demonstrate strong effects of introduced herbivores on both plant demography and population dynamics and show that climate

  11. Climate alters response of an endemic island plant to removal of invasive herbivores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McEachern, A Kathryn; Thomson, Diane M; Chess, Katherine A

    2009-09-01

    Islands experience higher rates of species extinction than mainland ecosystems, with biological invasions among the leading causes; they also serve as important model systems for testing ideas in basic and applied ecology. Invasive removal programs on islands are conservation efforts that can also be viewed as powerful manipulative experiments, but few data are available to evaluate their effects. We collected demographic and herbivore damage data for Castilleja mollis Pennell, an endangered plant endemic to Santa Rosa Island, California, over a 12-year period before, during, and after the implementation of control for introduced cattle, deer, and elk. We used these long-term data to explore mechanisms underlying herbivore effects, assess the results of herbivore reduction at the scales of both individual plants and populations, and determine how temporal variability in herbivory and plant demography influenced responses to herbivore removals. For individual plants, herbivore effects mediated by disturbance were greater than those of grazing. Deer and elk scraping of the ground substantially increased plant mortality and dormancy and reduced flowering and growth. Stem damage from browsing did not affect survivorship but significantly reduced plant growth and flower production. Herbivore control successfully lowered damage rates, which declined steeply between 1997 and 2000 and have remained relatively low. Castilleja mollis abundances rose sharply after 1997, suggesting a positive effect of herbivore control, but then began to decline steadily again after 2003. The recent decline appears to be driven by higher mean growing season temperatures; interestingly, not only reductions in scraping damage but a period of cooler conditions were significant in explaining increases in C. mollis populations between 1997 and 2002. Our results demonstrate strong effects of introduced herbivores on both plant demography and population dynamics and show that climate

  12. Adaptive evolution of threonine deaminase in plant defense against insect herbivores

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gonzales-Vigil, Eliana; Bianchetti, Christopher M.; Phillips, Jr., George N.; Howe, Gregg A. (MSU); (UW)

    2011-11-07

    Gene duplication is a major source of plant chemical diversity that mediates plant-herbivore interactions. There is little direct evidence, however, that novel chemical traits arising from gene duplication reduce herbivory. Higher plants use threonine deaminase (TD) to catalyze the dehydration of threonine (Thr) to {alpha}-ketobutyrate and ammonia as the committed step in the biosynthesis of isoleucine (Ile). Cultivated tomato and related Solanum species contain a duplicated TD paralog (TD2) that is coexpressed with a suite of genes involved in herbivore resistance. Analysis of TD2-deficient tomato lines showed that TD2 has a defensive function related to Thr catabolism in the gut of lepidopteran herbivores. During herbivory, the regulatory domain of TD2 is removed by proteolysis to generate a truncated protein (pTD2) that efficiently degrades Thr without being inhibited by Ile. We show that this proteolytic activation step occurs in the gut of lepidopteran but not coleopteran herbivores, and is catalyzed by a chymotrypsin-like protease of insect origin. Analysis of purified recombinant enzymes showed that TD2 is remarkably more resistant to proteolysis and high temperature than the ancestral TD1 isoform. The crystal structure of pTD2 provided evidence that electrostatic interactions constitute a stabilizing feature associated with adaptation of TD2 to the extreme environment of the lepidopteran gut. These findings demonstrate a role for gene duplication in the evolution of a plant defense that targets and co-opts herbivore digestive physiology.

  13. Plant-Mediated Systemic Interactions Between Pathogens, Parasitic Nematodes, and Herbivores Above- and Belowground

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Biere, A.; Goverse, A.

    2016-01-01

    Plants are important mediators of interactions between aboveground (AG) and belowground (BG) pathogens, arthropod herbivores, and nematodes (phytophages). We highlight recent progress in our understanding of within- and cross-compartment plant responses to these groups of phytophages in terms of

  14. Plant-mediated systemic interactions between pathogens, parasitic nematodes, and herbivores above- and belowground

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Biere, A.; Goverse, Aska

    2016-01-01

    Plants are important mediators of interactions between aboveground (AG) and belowground (BG) pathogens, arthropod herbivores, and nematodes (phytophages). We highlight recent progress in our understanding of within and cross-compartment plant responses to these groups of phytophages in terms of

  15. Sequestration of plant secondary metabolites by insect herbivores: molecular mechanisms and ecological consequences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erb, Matthias; Robert, Christelle Am

    2016-04-01

    Numerous insect herbivores can take up and store plant toxins as self-defense against their own natural enemies. Plant toxin sequestration is tightly linked with tolerance strategies that keep the toxins functional. Specific transporters have been identified that likely allow the herbivore to control the spatiotemporal dynamics of toxin accumulation. Certain herbivores furthermore possess specific enzymes to boost the bioactivity of the sequestered toxins. Ecologists have studied plant toxin sequestration for decades. The recently uncovered molecular mechanisms in combination with transient, non-transgenic systems to manipulate insect gene expression will help to understand the importance of toxin sequestration for food-web dynamics in nature. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Omnivore-herbivore interactions: thrips and whiteflies compete via the shared host plant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pappas, Maria L; Tavlaki, Georgia; Triantafyllou, Anneta; Broufas, George

    2018-03-05

    Phytophagy is a common feature among pure herbivorous insects and omnivores that utilise both plant and prey as food resources; nevertheless, experimental evidence for factors affecting their interactions is restricted to intraguild predation and predator-mediated competition. We herein focused on plant-mediated effects that could result from plant defence activation or quality alteration and compared the performance of an omnivore, the western flower thrips Frankliniella occidentalis, and a pure herbivore, the greenhouse whitefly Trialeurodes vaporariorum, on cucumber plants previously infested with either species. Furthermore, we recorded their behavioural responses when given a choice among infested and clean plants. Whiteflies laid less eggs on plants previously exposed to thrips but more on whitefly-infested plants. Thrips survival was negatively affected on whitefly-infested than on thrips-infested or clean plants. Notably, whiteflies developed significantly faster on plants infested with conspecifics. In accordance, whiteflies avoided thrips-infested plants and preferred whitefly-infested over clean plants. Thrips showed no preference for either infested or clean plants. Our study is a first report on the role of plant-mediated effects in shaping omnivore-herbivore interactions. Considering the factors driving such interactions we will likely better understand the ecology of the more complex relationships among plants and pest organisms.

  17. Increased resistance to a generalist herbivore in a salinity-stressed non-halophytic plant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Renault, Sylvie; Wolfe, Scott; Markham, John; Avila-Sakar, Germán

    2016-01-01

    Plants often grow under the combined stress of several factors. Salinity and herbivory, separately, can severely hinder plant growth and reproduction, but the combined effects of both factors are still not clearly understood. Salinity is known to reduce plant tissue nitrogen content and growth rates. Since herbivores prefer tissues with high N content, and biochemical pathways leading to resistance are commonly elicited by salt-stress, we hypothesized that plants growing in saline conditions would have enhanced resistance against herbivores. The non-halophyte, Brassica juncea, and the generalist herbivore Trichoplusia ni were used to test the prediction that plants subjected to salinity stress would be both more resistant and more tolerant to herbivory than those growing without salt stress. Plants were grown under different NaCl levels, and either exposed to herbivores and followed by removal of half of their leaves, or left intact. Plants were left to grow and reproduce until senescence. Tissue quality was assessed, seeds were counted and biomass of different organs measured. Plants exposed to salinity grew less, had reduced tissue nitrogen, protein and chlorophyll content, although proline levels increased. Specific leaf area, leaf water content, transpiration and root:shoot ratio remained unaffected. Plants growing under saline condition had greater constitutive resistance than unstressed plants. However, induced resistance and tolerance were not affected by salinity. These results support the hypothesis that plants growing under salt-stress are better defended against herbivores, although in B. juncea this may be mostly through resistance, and less through tolerance. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Annals of Botany Company.

  18. Varying Herbivore Population Structure Correlates with Lack of Local Adaptation in a Geographic Variable Plant-Herbivore Interaction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cogni, Rodrigo; Trigo, José R.; Futuyma, Douglas J.

    2011-01-01

    Local adaptation of parasites to their hosts due to coevolution is a central prediction of many theories in evolutionary biology. However, empirical studies looking for parasite local adaptation show great variation in outcomes, and the reasons for such variation are largely unknown. In a previous study, we showed adaptive differentiation in the arctiid moth Utetheisa ornatrix to its host plant, the pyrrolizidine alkaloid-bearing legume Crotalaria pallida, at the continental scale, but found no differentiation at the regional scale. In the present study, we sampled the same sites to investigate factors that may contribute to the lack of differentiation at the regional scale. We performed field observations that show that specialist and non-specialist polyphagous herbivore incidence varies among populations at both scales. With a series of common-garden experiments we show that some plant traits that may affect herbivory (pyrrolizidine alkaloids and extrafloral nectaries) vary at the regional scale, while other traits (trichomes and nitrogen content) just vary at the continental scale. These results, combined with our previous evidence for plant population differentiation based on larval performance on fresh fruits, suggest that U. ornatrix is subjected to divergent selection even at the regional scale. Finally, with a microsatellite study we investigated population structure of U. ornatrix. We found that population structure is not stable over time: we found population differentiation at the regional scale in the first year of sampling, but not in the second year. Unstable population structure of the herbivore is the most likely cause of the lack of regional adaptation. PMID:22220208

  19. Varying herbivore population structure correlates with lack of local adaptation in a geographic variable plant-herbivore interaction.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rodrigo Cogni

    Full Text Available Local adaptation of parasites to their hosts due to coevolution is a central prediction of many theories in evolutionary biology. However, empirical studies looking for parasite local adaptation show great variation in outcomes, and the reasons for such variation are largely unknown. In a previous study, we showed adaptive differentiation in the arctiid moth Utetheisa ornatrix to its host plant, the pyrrolizidine alkaloid-bearing legume Crotalaria pallida, at the continental scale, but found no differentiation at the regional scale. In the present study, we sampled the same sites to investigate factors that may contribute to the lack of differentiation at the regional scale. We performed field observations that show that specialist and non-specialist polyphagous herbivore incidence varies among populations at both scales. With a series of common-garden experiments we show that some plant traits that may affect herbivory (pyrrolizidine alkaloids and extrafloral nectaries vary at the regional scale, while other traits (trichomes and nitrogen content just vary at the continental scale. These results, combined with our previous evidence for plant population differentiation based on larval performance on fresh fruits, suggest that U. ornatrix is subjected to divergent selection even at the regional scale. Finally, with a microsatellite study we investigated population structure of U. ornatrix. We found that population structure is not stable over time: we found population differentiation at the regional scale in the first year of sampling, but not in the second year. Unstable population structure of the herbivore is the most likely cause of the lack of regional adaptation.

  20. Evolutionary Ecology of Multitrophic Interactions between Plants, Insect Herbivores and Entomopathogens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shikano, Ikkei

    2017-06-01

    Plants play an important role in the interactions between insect herbivores and their pathogens. Since the seminal review by Cory and Hoover (2006) on plant-mediated effects on insect-pathogen interactions, considerable progress has been made in understanding the complexity of these tritrophic interactions. Increasing interest in the areas of nutritional and ecological immunology over the last decade have revealed that plant primary and secondary metabolites can influence the outcomes of insect-pathogen interactions by altering insect immune functioning and physical barriers to pathogen entry. Some insects use plant secondary chemicals and nutrients to prevent infections (prophylactic medication) and medicate to limit the severity of infections (therapeutic medication). Recent findings suggest that there may be selectable plant traits that enhance entomopathogen efficacy, suggesting that entomopathogens could potentially impose selection pressure on plant traits that improve both pathogen and plant fitness. Moreover, plants in nature are inhabited by diverse communities of microbes, in addition to entomopathogens, some of which can trigger immune responses in insect herbivores. Plants are also shared by numerous other herbivorous arthropods with different modes of feeding that can trigger different defensive responses in plants. Some insect symbionts and gut microbes can degrade ingested defensive phytochemicals and be orally secreted onto wounded plant tissue during herbivory to alter plant defenses. Since non-entomopathogenic microbes and other arthropods are likely to influence the outcomes of plant-insect-entomopathogen interactions, I discuss a need to consider these multitrophic interactions within the greater web of species interactions.

  1. Herbivores modify selection on plant functional traits in a temperate rainforest understory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salgado-Luarte, Cristian; Gianoli, Ernesto

    2012-08-01

    There is limited evidence regarding the adaptive value of plant functional traits in contrasting light environments. It has been suggested that changes in these traits in response to light availability can increase herbivore susceptibility. We tested the adaptive value of plant functional traits linked with carbon gain in contrasting light environments and also evaluated whether herbivores can modify selection on these traits in each light environment. In a temperate rainforest, we examined phenotypic selection on functional traits in seedlings of the pioneer tree Aristotelia chilensis growing in sun (canopy gap) and shade (forest understory) and subjected to either natural herbivory or herbivore exclusion. We found differential selection on functional traits depending on light environment. In sun, there was positive directional selection on photosynthetic rate and relative growth rate (RGR), indicating that selection favors competitive ability in a high-resource environment. Seedlings with high specific leaf area (SLA) and intermediate RGR were selected in shade, suggesting that light capture and conservative resource use are favored in the understory. Herbivores reduced the strength of positive directional selection acting on SLA in shade. We provide the first demonstration that natural herbivory rates can change the strength of selection on plant ecophysiological traits, that is, attributes whose main function is resource uptake. Research addressing the evolution of shade tolerance should incorporate the selective role of herbivores.

  2. Parasitism by Cuscuta pentagona Attenuates Host Plant Defenses against Insect Herbivores1

    Science.gov (United States)

    Runyon, Justin B.; Mescher, Mark C.; De Moraes, Consuelo M.

    2008-01-01

    Considerable research has examined plant responses to concurrent attack by herbivores and pathogens, but the effects of attack by parasitic plants, another important class of plant-feeding organisms, on plant defenses against other enemies has not been explored. We investigated how attack by the parasitic plant Cuscuta pentagona impacted tomato (Solanum lycopersicum) defenses against the chewing insect beet armyworm (Spodoptera exigua; BAW). In response to insect feeding, C. pentagona-infested (parasitized) tomato plants produced only one-third of the antiherbivore phytohormone jasmonic acid (JA) produced by unparasitized plants. Similarly, parasitized tomato, in contrast to unparasitized plants, failed to emit herbivore-induced volatiles after 3 d of BAW feeding. Although parasitism impaired antiherbivore defenses, BAW growth was slower on parasitized tomato leaves. Vines of C. pentagona did not translocate JA from BAW-infested plants: amounts of JA in parasite vines grown on caterpillar-fed and control plants were similar. Parasitized plants generally contained more salicylic acid (SA), which can inhibit JA in some systems. Parasitized mutant (NahG) tomato plants deficient in SA produced more JA in response to insect feeding than parasitized wild-type plants, further suggesting cross talk between the SA and JA defense signaling pathways. However, JA induction by BAW was still reduced in parasitized compared to unparasitized NahG, implying that other factors must be involved. We found that parasitized plants were capable of producing induced volatiles when experimentally treated with JA, indicating that resource depletion by the parasite does not fully explain the observed attenuation of volatile response to herbivore feeding. Collectively, these findings show that parasitic plants can have important consequences for host plant defense against herbivores. PMID:18165323

  3. Parasitism by Cuscuta pentagona attenuates host plant defenses against insect herbivores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Runyon, Justin B; Mescher, Mark C; De Moraes, Consuelo M

    2008-03-01

    Considerable research has examined plant responses to concurrent attack by herbivores and pathogens, but the effects of attack by parasitic plants, another important class of plant-feeding organisms, on plant defenses against other enemies has not been explored. We investigated how attack by the parasitic plant Cuscuta pentagona impacted tomato (Solanum lycopersicum) defenses against the chewing insect beet armyworm (Spodoptera exigua; BAW). In response to insect feeding, C. pentagona-infested (parasitized) tomato plants produced only one-third of the antiherbivore phytohormone jasmonic acid (JA) produced by unparasitized plants. Similarly, parasitized tomato, in contrast to unparasitized plants, failed to emit herbivore-induced volatiles after 3 d of BAW feeding. Although parasitism impaired antiherbivore defenses, BAW growth was slower on parasitized tomato leaves. Vines of C. pentagona did not translocate JA from BAW-infested plants: amounts of JA in parasite vines grown on caterpillar-fed and control plants were similar. Parasitized plants generally contained more salicylic acid (SA), which can inhibit JA in some systems. Parasitized mutant (NahG) tomato plants deficient in SA produced more JA in response to insect feeding than parasitized wild-type plants, further suggesting cross talk between the SA and JA defense signaling pathways. However, JA induction by BAW was still reduced in parasitized compared to unparasitized NahG, implying that other factors must be involved. We found that parasitized plants were capable of producing induced volatiles when experimentally treated with JA, indicating that resource depletion by the parasite does not fully explain the observed attenuation of volatile response to herbivore feeding. Collectively, these findings show that parasitic plants can have important consequences for host plant defense against herbivores.

  4. Habitats as complex odour environments: how does plant diversity affect herbivore and parasitoid orientation?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicole Wäschke

    Full Text Available Plant diversity is known to affect success of host location by pest insects, but its effect on olfactory orientation of non-pest insect species has hardly been addressed. First, we tested in laboratory experiments the hypothesis that non-host plants, which increase odour complexity in habitats, affect the host location ability of herbivores and parasitoids. Furthermore, we recorded field data of plant diversity in addition to herbivore and parasitoid abundance at 77 grassland sites in three different regions in Germany in order to elucidate whether our laboratory results reflect the field situation. As a model system we used the herb Plantago lanceolata, the herbivorous weevil Mecinus pascuorum, and its larval parasitoid Mesopolobus incultus. The laboratory bioassays revealed that both the herbivorous weevil and its larval parasitoid can locate their host plant and host via olfactory cues even in the presence of non-host odour. In a newly established two-circle olfactometer, the weeviĺs capability to detect host plant odour was not affected by odours from non-host plants. However, addition of non-host plant odours to host plant odour enhanced the weeviĺs foraging activity. The parasitoid was attracted by a combination of host plant and host volatiles in both the absence and presence of non-host plant volatiles in a Y-tube olfactometer. In dual choice tests the parasitoid preferred the blend of host plant and host volatiles over its combination with non-host plant volatiles. In the field, no indication was found that high plant diversity disturbs host (plant location by the weevil and its parasitoid. In contrast, plant diversity was positively correlated with weevil abundance, whereas parasitoid abundance was independent of plant diversity. Therefore, we conclude that weevils and parasitoids showed the sensory capacity to successfully cope with complex vegetation odours when searching for hosts.

  5. Plant-to-plant communication triggered by systemin primes anti-herbivore resistance in tomato.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coppola, Mariangela; Cascone, Pasquale; Madonna, Valentina; Di Lelio, Ilaria; Esposito, Francesco; Avitabile, Concetta; Romanelli, Alessandra; Guerrieri, Emilio; Vitiello, Alessia; Pennacchio, Francesco; Rao, Rosa; Corrado, Giandomenico

    2017-11-14

    Plants actively respond to herbivory by inducing various defense mechanisms in both damaged (locally) and non-damaged tissues (systemically). In addition, it is currently widely accepted that plant-to-plant communication allows specific neighbors to be warned of likely incoming stress (defense priming). Systemin is a plant peptide hormone promoting the systemic response to herbivory in tomato. This 18-aa peptide is also able to induce the release of bioactive Volatile Organic Compounds, thus also promoting the interaction between the tomato and the third trophic level (e.g. predators and parasitoids of insect pests). In this work, using a combination of gene expression (RNA-Seq and qRT-PCR), behavioral and chemical approaches, we demonstrate that systemin triggers metabolic changes of the plant that are capable of inducing a primed state in neighboring unchallenged plants. At the molecular level, the primed state is mainly associated with an elevated transcription of pattern -recognition receptors, signaling enzymes and transcription factors. Compared to naïve plants, systemin-primed plants were significantly more resistant to herbivorous pests, more attractive to parasitoids and showed an increased response to wounding. Small peptides are nowadays considered fundamental signaling molecules in many plant processes and this work extends the range of downstream effects of this class of molecules to intraspecific plant-to-plant communication.

  6. Carnivore Attractant or Plant Elicitor? Multifunctional Roles of Methyl Salicylate Lures in Tomato Defense.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rowen, Elizabeth; Gutensohn, Michael; Dudareva, Natalia; Kaplan, Ian

    2017-06-01

    Synthetic plant volatile lures attract natural enemies, but may have non-target effects due to the multifunctional nature of volatile signals. For example, methyl salicylate (MeSA) is used to attract predators, yet also serves as a signaling hormone involved in plant pathogen defense. We investigated the consequences of deploying MeSA lures to attract predators for tomato (Solanum lycopersicum) defense against herbivores. To understand the spatial distribution of the lure's effect, we exposed tomatoes in the field to MeSA along a linear distance gradient and induced defenses by simulating feeding by hornworm caterpillars in a fully crossed factorial design (+/- MeSA, +/- herbivory). Subsequently, we analyzed activity of several defensive proteins (protease inhibitors, polyphenol oxidase, peroxidase), development of hornworm larvae (Manduca sexta), growth of fungal pathogens (Cladosporium and Alternaria), and attractiveness to herbivores and predators. Overall, MeSA-exposed plants were more resistant to both insects and pathogens. Secondary pathogen infection was reduced by 25% in MeSA exposed plants, possibly due to elevated polyphenol oxidase activity. Interestingly, we found that lures affected plant pathogen defenses equivalently across all distances (up to 4 m away) indicating that horizontal diffusion of a synthetic volatile may be greater than previously assumed. While thrips avoided colonizing hornworm- damaged tomato plants, this induced resistance was not observed upon pre-exposure to MeSA, suggesting that MeSA suppresses the repellant effect induced by herbivory. Thus, using MeSA lures in biological control may inadvertently protect crops from pathogens, but has mixed effects on plant resistance to insect herbivores.

  7. Adaptive radiation with regard to nutrient sequestration strategies in the carnivorous plants of the genus Nepenthes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pavlovič, Andrej

    2012-02-01

    Carnivorous pitcher plants of the genus Nepenthes have evolved a great diversity of pitcher morphologies. Selective pressures for maximizing nutrient uptake have driven speciation and diversification of the genus in a process known as adaptive radiation. This leads to the evolution of pitchers adapted to specific and often bizarre source of nutrients, which are not strictly animal-derived. One example is Nepenthes ampullaria with unusual growth pattern and pitcher morphology what enables the plant to capture a leaf litter from the canopy above. We showed that the plant benefits from nitrogen uptake by increased rate of photosynthesis and growth what may provide competitive advantage over others co-habiting plants. A possible impact of such specialization toward hybridization, an important mechanism in speciation, is discussed.

  8. Herbivore-mediated ecological costs of reproduction shape the life history of an iteroparous plant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Tom E X; Tenhumberg, Brigitte; Louda, Svata M

    2008-02-01

    Plant reproduction yields immediate fitness benefits but can be costly in terms of survival, growth, and future fecundity. Life-history theory posits that reproductive strategies are shaped by trade-offs between current and future fitness that result from these direct costs of reproduction. Plant reproduction may also incur indirect ecological costs if it increases susceptibility to herbivores. Yet ecological costs of reproduction have received little empirical attention and remain poorly integrated into life-history theory. Here, we provide evidence for herbivore-mediated ecological costs of reproduction, and we develop theory to examine how these costs influence plant life-history strategies. Field experiments with an iteroparous cactus (Opuntia imbricata) indicated that greater reproductive effort (proportion of meristems allocated to reproduction) led to greater attack by a cactus-feeding insect (Narnia pallidicornis) and that damage by this herbivore reduced reproductive success. A dynamic programming model predicted strongly divergent optimal reproductive strategies when ecological costs were included, compared with when these costs were ignored. Meristem allocation by cacti in the field matched the optimal strategy expected under ecological costs of reproduction. The results indicate that plant reproductive allocation can strongly influence the intensity of interactions with herbivores and that associated ecological costs can play an important selective role in the evolution of plant life histories.

  9. Induction of Systemic Resistance against Insect Herbivores in Plants by Beneficial Soil Microbes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Md. Harun-Or Rashid

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Soil microorganisms with growth-promoting activities in plants, including rhizobacteria and rhizofungi, can improve plant health in a variety of different ways. These beneficial microbes may confer broad-spectrum resistance to insect herbivores. Here, we provide evidence that beneficial microbes modulate plant defenses against insect herbivores. Beneficial soil microorganisms can regulate hormone signaling including the jasmonic acid, ethylene and salicylic acid pathways, thereby leading to gene expression, biosynthesis of secondary metabolites, plant defensive proteins and different enzymes and volatile compounds, that may induce defenses against leaf-chewing as well as phloem-feeding insects. In this review, we discuss how beneficial microbes trigger induced systemic resistance against insects by promoting plant growth and highlight changes in plant molecular mechanisms and biochemical profiles.

  10. Insect herbivores drive real-time ecological and evolutionary change in plant populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agrawal, Anurag A; Hastings, Amy P; Johnson, Marc T J; Maron, John L; Salminen, Juha-Pekka

    2012-10-05

    Insect herbivores are hypothesized to be major factors affecting the ecology and evolution of plants. We tested this prediction by suppressing insects in replicated field populations of a native plant, Oenothera biennis, which reduced seed predation, altered interspecific competitive dynamics, and resulted in rapid evolutionary divergence. Comparative genotyping and phenotyping of nearly 12,000 O. biennis individuals revealed that in plots protected from insects, resistance to herbivores declined through time owing to changes in flowering time and lower defensive ellagitannins in fruits, whereas plant competitive ability increased. This independent real-time evolution of plant resistance and competitive ability in the field resulted from the relaxation of direct selective effects of insects on plant defense and through indirect effects due to reduced herbivory on plant competitors.

  11. The herbivore-induced plant volatile methyl salicylate negatively affects attraction of the parasitoid Diadegma semiclausum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Snoeren, Tjeerd A L; Mumm, Roland; Poelman, Erik H; Yang, Yue; Pichersky, Eran; Dicke, Marcel

    2010-05-01

    The indirect defense mechanisms of plants comprise the production of herbivore-induced plant volatiles that can attract natural enemies of plant attackers. One of the often emitted compounds after herbivory is methyl salicylate (MeSA). Here, we studied the importance of this caterpillar-induced compound in the attraction of the parasitoid wasp Diadegma semiclausum by using a mutant Arabidopsis line. Pieris rapae infested AtBSMT1-KO mutant Arabidopsis plants, compromised in the biosynthesis of MeSA, were more attractive to parasitoids than infested wild-type plants. This suggests that the presence of MeSA has negative effects on parasitoid host-finding behavior when exposed to wild-type production of herbivore-induced Arabidopsis volatiles. Furthermore, in line with this, we recorded a positive correlation between MeSA dose and repellence of D. semiclausum when supplementing the headspace of caterpillar-infested AtBSMT1-KO plants with synthetic MeSA.

  12. Predatory Mite Attraction to Herbivore-induced Plant Odors is not a Consequence of Attraction to Individual Herbivore-induced Plant Volatiles

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Bruijn, Paulien J. A.; Sabelis, Maurice W.

    2008-01-01

    Predatory mites locate herbivorous mites, their prey, by the aid of herbivore-induced plant volatiles (HIPV). These HIPV differ with plant and/or herbivore species, and it is not well understood how predators cope with this variation. We hypothesized that predators are attracted to specific compounds in HIPV, and that they can identify these compounds in odor mixtures not previously experienced. To test this, we assessed the olfactory response of Phytoseiulus persimilis, a predatory mite that preys on the highly polyphagous herbivore Tetranychus urticae. The responses of the predatory mite to a dilution series of each of 30 structurally different compounds were tested. They mites responded to most of these compounds, but usually in an aversive way. Individual HIPV were no more attractive (or less repellent) than out-group compounds, i.e., volatiles not induced in plants fed upon by spider-mites. Only three samples were significantly attractive to the mites: octan-1-ol, not involved in indirect defense, and cis-3-hexen-1-ol and methyl salicylate, which are both induced by herbivory, but not specific for the herbivore that infests the plant. Attraction to individual compounds was low compared to the full HIPV blend from Lima bean. These results indicate that individual HIPV have no a priori meaning to the mites. Hence, there is no reason why they could profit from an ability to identify individual compounds in odor mixtures. Subsequent experiments confirmed that naive predatory mites do not prefer tomato HIPV, which included the attractive compound methyl salicylate, over the odor of an uninfested bean. However, upon associating each of these odors with food over a period of 15 min, both are preferred. The memory to this association wanes within 24 hr. We conclude that P. persimilis possesses a limited ability to identify individual spider mite-induced plant volatiles in odor mixtures. We suggest that predatory mites instead learn to respond to prey

  13. The role of electrical and jasmonate signalling in the recognition of captured prey in the carnivorous sundew plant Drosera capensis

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Krausko, M.; Perůtka, M.; Šebela, M.; Šamajová, O.; Šamaj, J.; Novák, Ondřej; Pavlovič, A.

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 213, č. 4 (2017), s. 1818-1835 ISSN 0028-646X R&D Projects: GA MŠk(CZ) LO1204 Institutional support: RVO:61389030 Keywords : action potential * carnivorous plant * Drosera * electrical signal * enzymes * jasmonates * long-distance signalling * sundew Subject RIV: EB - Genetics ; Molecular Biology OBOR OECD: Plant sciences, botany Impact factor: 7.330, year: 2016

  14. Innate responses of the predatory mite Phytoseiulus persimilis to a herbivore-induced plant volatile

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sznajder, B.; Sabelis, M.W.; Egas, M.

    2011-01-01

    The responses of the predatory mite P. persimilis to herbivore-induced plant volatiles are at least partly genetically determined. Thus, there is potential for the evolution of this behaviour by natural selection. We tested whether distinct predator genotypes with contrasting responses to a specific

  15. Plant reproductive allocation predicts herbivore dynamics across spatial and temporal scales.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Tom E X; Tyre, Andrew J; Louda, Svata M

    2006-11-01

    Life-history theory suggests that iteroparous plants should be flexible in their allocation of resources toward growth and reproduction. Such plasticity could have consequences for herbivores that prefer or specialize on vegetative versus reproductive structures. To test this prediction, we studied the response of the cactus bug (Narnia pallidicornis) to meristem allocation by tree cholla cactus (Opuntia imbricata). We evaluated the explanatory power of demographic models that incorporated variation in cactus relative reproductive effort (RRE; the proportion of meristems allocated toward reproduction). Field data provided strong support for a single model that defined herbivore fecundity as a time-varying, increasing function of host RRE. High-RRE plants were predicted to support larger insect populations, and this effect was strongest late in the season. Independent field data provided strong support for these qualitative predictions and suggested that plant allocation effects extend across temporal and spatial scales. Specifically, late-season insect abundance was positively associated with interannual changes in cactus RRE over 3 years. Spatial variation in insect abundance was correlated with variation in RRE among five cactus populations across New Mexico. We conclude that plant allocation can be a critical component of resource quality for insect herbivores and, thus, an important mechanism underlying variation in herbivore abundance across time and space.

  16. Potential for biotic resistance from herbivores to tropical and subtropical plant invasions in aquatic ecosystems

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Petruzella, A.; Grutters, B.M.C.; Thomaz, S.M.; Bakker, E.S.

    2017-01-01

    Invasions of tropical and subtropical aquatic plants threaten biodiversity and cause ecological and economic impacts worldwide. An urgent question is whether native herbivores are able to inhibit the spread of these alien species thus providing biotic resistance. The potential for biotic resistance

  17. Turnover of plant lineages shapes herbivore phylogenetic beta diversity along ecological gradients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pellissier, Loïc; Ndiribe, Charlotte; Dubuis, Anne; Pradervand, Jean-Nicolas; Salamin, Nicolas; Guisan, Antoine; Rasmann, Sergio

    2013-05-01

    Understanding drivers of biodiversity patterns is of prime importance in this era of severe environmental crisis. More diverse plant communities have been postulated to represent a larger functional trait-space, more likely to sustain a diverse assembly of herbivore species. Here, we expand this hypothesis to integrate environmental, functional and phylogenetic variation of plant communities as factors explaining the diversity of lepidopteran assemblages along elevation gradients in the Swiss Western Alps. According to expectations, we found that the association between butterflies and their host plants is highly phylogenetically structured. Multiple regression analyses showed the combined effect of climate, functional traits and phylogenetic diversity in structuring butterfly communities. Furthermore, we provide the first evidence that plant phylogenetic beta diversity is the major driver explaining butterfly phylogenetic beta diversity. Along ecological gradients, the bottom up control of herbivore diversity is thus driven by phylogenetically structured turnover of plant traits as well as environmental variables. © 2013 Blackwell Publishing Ltd/CNRS.

  18. The tri-trophic interactions hypothesis: interactive effects of host plant quality, diet breadth and natural enemies on herbivores.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kailen A Mooney

    Full Text Available Several influential hypotheses in plant-herbivore and herbivore-predator interactions consider the interactive effects of plant quality, herbivore diet breadth, and predation on herbivore performance. Yet individually and collectively, these hypotheses fail to address the simultaneous influence of all three factors. Here we review existing hypotheses, and propose the tri-trophic interactions (TTI hypothesis to consolidate and integrate their predictions. The TTI hypothesis predicts that dietary specialist herbivores (as compared to generalists should escape predators and be competitively dominant due to faster growth rates, and that such differences should be greater on low quality (as compared to high quality host plants. To provide a preliminary test of these predictions, we conducted an empirical study comparing the effects of plant (Baccharis salicifolia quality and predators between a specialist (Uroleucon macolai and a generalist (Aphis gossypii aphid herbivore. Consistent with predictions, these three factors interactively determine herbivore performance in ways not addressed by existing hypotheses. Compared to the specialist, the generalist was less fecund, competitively inferior, and more sensitive to low plant quality. Correspondingly, predator effects were contingent upon plant quality only for the generalist. Contrary to predictions, predator effects were weaker for the generalist and on low-quality plants, likely due to density-dependent benefits provided to the generalist by mutualist ants. Because the TTI hypothesis predicts the superior performance of specialists, mutualist ants may be critical to A. gossypii persistence under competition from U. macolai. In summary, the integrative nature of the TTI hypothesis offers novel insight into the determinants of plant-herbivore and herbivore-predator interactions and the coexistence of specialist and generalist herbivores.

  19. Plant Size as Determinant of Species Richness of Herbivores, Natural Enemies and Pollinators across 21 Brassicaceae Species.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hella Schlinkert

    Full Text Available Large plants are often more conspicuous and more attractive for associated animals than small plants, e.g. due to their wider range of resources. Therefore, plant size can positively affect species richness of associated animals, as shown for single groups of herbivores, but studies usually consider intraspecific size differences of plants in unstandardised environments. As comprehensive tests of interspecific plant size differences under standardised conditions are missing so far, we investigated effects of plant size on species richness of all associated arthropods using a common garden experiment with 21 Brassicaceae species covering a broad interspecific plant size gradient from 10 to 130 cm height. We recorded plant associated ecto- and endophagous herbivores, their natural enemies and pollinators on and in each aboveground plant organ, i.e. flowers, fruits, leaves and stems. Plant size (measured as height from the ground, the number of different plant organ entities and their biomass were assessed. Increasing plant size led to increased species richness of associated herbivores, natural enemies and pollinating insects. This pattern was found for ectophagous and endophagous herbivores, their natural enemies, as well as for herbivores associated with leaves and fruits and their natural enemies, independently of the additional positive effects of resource availability (i.e. organ biomass or number of entities and, regarding natural enemies, herbivore species richness. We found a lower R2 for pollinators compared to herbivores and natural enemies, probably caused by the high importance of flower characteristics for pollinator species richness besides plant size. Overall, the increase in plant height from 10 to 130 cm led to a 2.7-fold increase in predicted total arthropod species richness. In conclusion, plant size is a comprehensive driver of species richness of the plant associated arthropods, including pollinators, herbivores and their

  20. Elevated CO{sub 2} levels and herbivore damage alter host plant preferences

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Agrell, J. [Lund Univ., Dept. of Animal Ecology, Lund (Sweden); Anderson, Peter, Swedish Univ. of Agricultural Sciences, Dept. of Crop Sciences, Alnarp (SE)); Oleszek, W.; Stochmal, Anna [Inst. of Soil Science and Plant Cultivation, Dept. of Biochemistry, Pulawy (Poland); Agrell, Cecilia [Lund Univ., Dept. of Chemical Ecology and Ecotoxicology, Lund (Sweden)

    2006-01-01

    Interactions between the moth Spodoptera littoralis and two of its host plants, alfalfa (Medicago sativa) and cotton (Gossypium hirsutum) were examined, using plants grown under ambient (350 ppm) and elevated (700 ppm) CO{sub 2} conditions. To determine strength and effects of herbivore-induced responses assays were performed with both undamaged (control) and herbivore damaged plants. CO{sub 2} and damage effects on larval host plant preferences were determined through dual-choice bioassays. In addition, larvae were reared from hatching to pupation on experimental foliage to examine effects on larval growth and development. When undamaged plants were used S. littoralis larvae in consumed more cotton than alfalfa, and CO{sub 2} enrichment caused a reduction in the preference for cotton. With damaged plants larvae consumed equal amounts of the two plant species (ambient CO{sub 2} conditions), but CO{sub 2} enrichment strongly shifted preferences towards cotton, which was then consumed three times more than alfalfa. Complementary assays showed that elevated CO{sub 2} levels had no effect on the herbivore-induced responses of cotton, whereas those of alfalfa were significantly increased. Larval growth was highest for larvae fed undamaged cotton irrespectively of CO{sub 2} level, and lowest for larvae on damaged alfalfa from the high CO{sub 2} treatment. Development time increased on damaged cotton irrespectively of CO{sub 2} treatment, and on damaged alfalfa in the elevated CO{sub 2} treatment. (au) These results demonstrate that elevated CO2 levels can cause insect herbivores to alter host plant preferences, and that effects on herbivore-induced responses may be a key mechanism behind these processes. Furthermore, since the insects were shown to avoid foliage that reduced their physiological performance, our data suggest that behavioural host plant shifts result in partial escape from negative consequences of feeding on high CO2 foliage. Thus, CO2 enrichment can alter

  1. Prioritizing plant defence over growth through WRKY regulation facilitates infestation by non-target herbivores

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Ran; Zhang, Jin; Li, Jiancai; Zhou, Guoxin; Wang, Qi; Bian, Wenbo; Erb, Matthias; Lou, Yonggen

    2015-01-01

    Plants generally respond to herbivore attack by increasing resistance and decreasing growth. This prioritization is achieved through the regulation of phytohormonal signaling networks. However, it remains unknown how this prioritization affects resistance against non-target herbivores. In this study, we identify WRKY70 as a specific herbivore-induced, mitogen-activated protein kinase-regulated rice transcription factor that physically interacts with W-box motifs and prioritizes defence over growth by positively regulating jasmonic acid (JA) and negatively regulating gibberellin (GA) biosynthesis upon attack by the chewing herbivore Chilo suppressalis. WRKY70-dependent JA biosynthesis is required for proteinase inhibitor activation and resistance against C. suppressalis. In contrast, WRKY70 induction increases plant susceptibility against the rice brown planthopper Nilaparvata lugens. Experiments with GA-deficient rice lines identify WRKY70-dependent GA signaling as the causal factor in N. lugens susceptibility. Our study shows that prioritizing defence over growth leads to a significant resistance trade-off with important implications for the evolution and agricultural exploitation of plant immunity. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.04805.001 PMID:26083713

  2. Monoterpene and herbivore-induced emissions from cabbage plants grown at elevated atmospheric CO 2 concentration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vuorinen, Terhi; Reddy, G. V. P.; Nerg, Anne-Marja; Holopainen, Jarmo K.

    The warming of the lower atmosphere due to elevating CO 2 concentration may increase volatile organic compound (VOC) emissions from plants. Also, direct effects of elevated CO 2 on plant secondary metabolism are expected to lead to increased VOC emissions due to allocation of excess carbon on secondary metabolites, of which many are volatile. We investigated how growing at doubled ambient CO 2 concentration affects emissions from cabbage plants ( Brassica oleracea subsp. capitata) damaged by either the leaf-chewing larvae of crucifer specialist diamondback moth ( Plutella xylostella L.) or generalist Egyptian cotton leafworm ( Spodoptera littoralis (Boisduval)). The emission from cabbage cv. Lennox grown in both CO 2 concentrations, consisted mainly of monoterpenes (sabinene, limonene, α-thujene, 1,8-cineole, β-pinene, myrcene, α-pinene and γ-terpinene). ( Z)-3-Hexenyl acetate, sesquiterpene ( E, E)- α-farnesene and homoterpene ( E)-4,8-dimethyl-1,3,7-nonatriene (DMNT) were emitted mainly from herbivore-damaged plants. Plants grown at 720 μmol mol -1 of CO 2 had significantly lower total monoterpene emissions per shoot dry weight than plants grown at 360 μmol mol -1 of CO 2, while damage by both herbivores significantly increased the total monoterpene emissions compared to intact plants. ( Z)-3-Hexenyl acetate, ( E, E)- α-farnesene and DMNT emissions per shoot dry weight were not affected by the growth at elevated CO 2. The emission of DMNT was significantly enhanced from plants damaged by the specialist P. xylostella compared to the plants damaged by the generalist S. littoralis. The relative proportions of total monoterpenes and total herbivore-induced compounds of total VOCs did not change due to the growth at elevated CO 2, while insect damage increased significantly the proportion of induced compounds. The results suggest that VOC emissions that are induced by the leaf-chewing herbivores will not be influenced by elevated CO 2 concentration.

  3. Plant-Herbivore and Plant-Pollinator Interactions of the Developing Perennial Oilseed Crop, Silphium integrifolium.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prasifka, J R; Mallinger, R E; Hulke, B S; Larson, S R; Van Tassel, D

    2017-12-08

    Sampling in Kansas and North Dakota documented the plant-herbivore and plant-pollinator interactions of the developing perennial oilseed crop, Silphium integrifolium Michx. The larva of the tortricid moth, Eucosma giganteana (Riley), was the most damaging floret- and seed-feeding pest in Kansas, with infested heads producing ≈85% (2015) or ≈45% (2016) fewer seeds than apparently undamaged heads. Necrosis of apical meristems caused stunting and delayed bloom in Kansas; though the source of the necrosis is not known, observations of the tarnished plant bug, Lygus lineolaris (Palisot de Beauvois; Hemiptera: Miridae), in S. integrifolium terminals suggest a possible cause. In North Dakota, E. giganteana larvae were not found, but pupae of Neotephritis finalis (Loew; Diptera: Tephritidae), a minor pest of cultivated sunflower, were common in the heads of S. integrifolium. Bees appeared highly attracted to S. integrifolium, and in all but one observation, bees were seen actively collecting pollen. The most common bees included large apids (Apis mellifera L., Svastra obliqua [Say], Melissodes spp.) and small-bodied halictids (Lasioglossum [Dialictus] spp.). Controlled pollination experiments demonstrated that S. integrifolium is pollinator dependent, due to both mechanical barriers (imperfect florets and protogyny) and genetic self-incompatibility. Subsequent greenhouse tests and AFLP confirmation of putative self-progeny show that a low (<1%) level of self-pollination is possible. If genetic self-incompatibility is eventually reduced through breeding, mechanical barriers would maintain a reliance on bees to move pollen between male and female florets. Collectively, observations on S. integrifolium show that both herbivore and pollinator management are important to maximize seed production. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America 2017. This work is written by (a) US Government employee(s) and is in the public domain in the US.

  4. Experience with methyl salicylate affects behavioural responses of a predatory mite to blends of herbivore-induced plant volatiles

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Boer, de J.G.; Dicke, M.

    2004-01-01

    Many natural enemies of herbivorous arthropods use herbivore-induced plant volatiles to locate their prey. These foraging cues consist of mixtures of compounds that show a considerable variation within and among plantherbivore combinations, a situation that favours a flexible approach in the

  5. Effects of phylogeny, leaf traits, and the altitudinal distribution of host plants on herbivore assemblages on congeneric Acer species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakadai, Ryosuke; Murakami, Masashi; Hirao, Toshihide

    2014-08-01

    Historical, niche-based, and stochastic processes have been proposed as the mechanisms that drive community assembly. In plant-herbivore systems, these processes can correspond to phylogeny, leaf traits, and the distribution of host plants, respectively. Although patterns of herbivore assemblages among plant species have been repeatedly examined, the effects of these factors among co-occurring congeneric host plant species have rarely been studied. Our aim was to reveal the process of community assembly for herbivores by investigating the effects of phylogeny, leaf traits, and the altitudinal distribution of closely related host plants of the genus Acer. We sampled leaf functional traits for 30 Acer species in Japan. Using a newly constructed phylogeny, we determined that three of the six measured leaf traits (leaf thickness, C/N ratio, and condensed tannin content) showed a phylogenetic signal. In a field study, we sampled herbivore communities on 14 Acer species within an elevation gradient and examined relationships between herbivore assemblages and host plants. We found that herbivore assemblages were significantly correlated with phylogeny, leaf traits, phylogenetic signals, and the altitudinal distribution of host plants. Our results indicate that the interaction between historical and current ecological processes shapes herbivore community assemblages.

  6. Acceleration of exotic plant invasion in a forested ecosystem by a generalist herbivore.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eschtruth, Anne K; Battles, John J

    2009-04-01

    The successful invasion of exotic plants is often attributed to the absence of coevolved enemies in the introduced range (i.e., the enemy release hypothesis). Nevertheless, several components of this hypothesis, including the role of generalist herbivores, remain relatively unexplored. We used repeated censuses of exclosures and paired controls to investigate the role of a generalist herbivore, white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus), in the invasion of 3 exotic plant species (Microstegium vimineum, Alliaria petiolata, and Berberis thunbergii) in eastern hemlock (Tsuga canadensis) forests in New Jersey and Pennsylvania (U.S.A.). This work was conducted in 10 eastern hemlock (T. canadensis) forests that spanned gradients in deer density and in the severity of canopy disturbance caused by an introduced insect pest, the hemlock woolly adelgid (Adelges tsugae). We used maximum likelihood estimation and information theoretics to quantify the strength of evidence for alternative models of the influence of deer density and its interaction with the severity of canopy disturbance on exotic plant abundance. Our results were consistent with the enemy release hypothesis in that exotic plants gained a competitive advantage in the presence of generalist herbivores in the introduced range. The abundance of all 3 exotic plants increased significantly more in the control plots than in the paired exclosures. For all species, the inclusion of canopy disturbance parameters resulted in models with substantially greater support than the deer density only models. Our results suggest that white-tailed deer herbivory can accelerate the invasion of exotic plants and that canopy disturbance can interact with herbivory to magnify the impact. In addition, our results provide compelling evidence of nonlinear relationships between deer density and the impact of herbivory on exotic species abundance. These findings highlight the important role of herbivore density in determining impacts on

  7. The multiple strategies of an insect herbivore to overcome plant cyanogenic glucoside defence

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pentzold, Stefan; Zagrobelny, Mika; Roelsgaard, Pernille Sølvhøj

    2014-01-01

    Cyanogenic glucosides (CNglcs) are widespread plant defence compounds that release toxic hydrogen cyanide by plant bglucosidase activity after tissue damage. Specialised insect herbivores have evolved counter strategies and some sequester CNglcs, but the underlying mechanisms to keep CNglcs intact...... during feeding and digestion are unknown. We show that CNglc-sequestering Zygaena filipendulae larvae combine behavioural, morphological, physiological and biochemical strategies at different time points during feeding and digestion to avoid toxic hydrolysis of the CNglcs present in their Lotus food...

  8. A fungal root symbiont modifies plant resistance to an insect herbivore.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borowicz, Victoria A

    1997-11-01

    Vesicular-arbuscular mycorrhizal (VAM) fungi are common root-colonizing symbionts that affect nutrient uptake by plants and can alter plant susceptibility to herbivores. I conducted a factorial experiment to test the hypotheses that colonization by VAM fungi (1) improves soybean (Glycine max) tolerance to grazing by folivorous Mexican bean beetle (Epilachna varivestis), and (2) indirectly affects herbivores by increasing host resistance. Soybean seedlings were inoculated with the VAM fungus Glomus etunicatum or VAM-free filtrate and fertilized with high-[P] or low-[P] fertilizer. After plants had grown for 7 weeks first-instar beetle larvae were placed on bagged leaves. Growth of soybean was little affected by grazing larvae, and no effects of treatments on tolerance of soybeans to herbivores were evident. Colonization by VAM fungus doubled the size of phosphorus-stressed plants but these plants were still half the size of plants given adequate phosphorus. High-[P] fertilizer increased levels of phosphorus and soluble carbohydrates, and decreased levels of soluble proteins in leaves of grazed plants. Colonization of grazed plants by VAM fungus had no significant effect on plant soluble carbohydrates, but increased concentration of phosphorus and decreased levels of proteins in phosphorus-stressed plants to concentrations similar to those of plants given adequate phosphorus. Mexican bean beetle mass at pupation, pupation rate, and survival to eclosion were greatest for beetles reared on phosphorus-stressed, VAM-colonized plants, refuting the hypothesis that VAM colonization improves host plant resistance. VAM colonization indirectly affected performance of Mexician bean beetle larvae by improving growth and nutrition of the host plant.

  9. Novel multitrophic interactions among an exotic, generalist herbivore, its host plants and resident enemies in California.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hopper, Julie V; Mills, Nicholas J

    2016-12-01

    What happens when an exotic herbivore invades and encounters novel host plants and enemies? Here, we investigate the impacts of host plant quality and plant architecture on an exotic generalist herbivore, Epiphyas postvittana (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae) and its interactions with resident parasitoids in California. Using artificial diet and five plant species, we found significant effects of diet on the fitness of E. postvittana under laboratory conditions. In the field, based on a common garden experiment with host plants of nine species, we found that larval parasitism varied among plant species by a factor of 2.1 with a higher risk of parasitism on shorter than taller plants. Parasitism of egg masses varied by a factor of 4.7 among plant species with a higher risk of parasitism on taller than shorter plants. In the laboratory, the foraging time of a resident egg parasitoid on excised leaves varied among plant species, but did not correspond to observed egg parasitism rates on these same plants in the field. On leaves of Plantago lanceolata, the probability of egg parasitism decreased with trichome density. Overall, there was a significant effect of host plant on the intrinsic rate of increase of E. postvittana and on the extent of parasitism by resident parasitoids, but no correlation existed between these two effects. The recent decline of E. postvittana in California may be due to the low quality of some host plants and to the many resident enemies that readily attack it, perhaps due to its phylogenetic relatedness to resident tortricids.

  10. Nepenthesin protease activity indicates digestive fluid dynamics in carnivorous nepenthes plants.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Franziska Buch

    Full Text Available Carnivorous plants use different morphological features to attract, trap and digest prey, mainly insects. Plants from the genus Nepenthes possess specialized leaves called pitchers that function as pitfall-traps. These pitchers are filled with a digestive fluid that is generated by the plants themselves. In order to digest caught prey in their pitchers, Nepenthes plants produce various hydrolytic enzymes including aspartic proteases, nepenthesins (Nep. Knowledge about the generation and induction of these proteases is limited. Here, by employing a FRET (fluorescent resonance energy transfer-based technique that uses a synthetic fluorescent substrate an easy and rapid detection of protease activities in the digestive fluids of various Nepenthes species was feasible. Biochemical studies and the heterologously expressed Nep II from Nepenthes mirabilis proved that the proteolytic activity relied on aspartic proteases, however an acid-mediated auto-activation mechanism was necessary. Employing the FRET-based approach, the induction and dynamics of nepenthesin in the digestive pitcher fluid of various Nepenthes plants could be studied directly with insect (Drosophila melanogaster prey or plant material. Moreover, we observed that proteolytic activity was induced by the phytohormone jasmonic acid but not by salicylic acid suggesting that jasmonate-dependent signaling pathways are involved in plant carnivory.

  11. Understanding plant defence responses against herbivore attacks: an essential first step towards the development of sustainable resistance against pests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santamaria, M Estrella; Martínez, Manuel; Cambra, Inés; Grbic, Vojislava; Diaz, Isabel

    2013-08-01

    Plant-herbivore relationships are complex interactions encompassing elaborate networks of molecules, signals and strategies used to overcome defences developed by each other. Herbivores use multiple feeding strategies to obtain nutrients from host plants. In turn, plants respond by triggering defence mechanisms to inhibit, block or modify the metabolism of the pest. As part of these defences, herbivore-challenged plants emit volatiles to attract natural enemies and warn neighbouring plants of the imminent threat. In response, herbivores develop a variety of strategies to suppress plant-induced protection. Our understanding of the plant-herbivore interphase is limited, although recent molecular approaches have revealed the participation of a battery of genes, proteins and volatile metabolites in attack-defence processes. This review describes the intricate and dynamic defence systems governing plant-herbivore interactions by examining the diverse strategies plants employ to deny phytophagous arthropods the ability to breach newly developed mechanisms of plant resistance. A cornerstone of this understanding is the use of transgenic tools to unravel the complex networks that control these interactions.

  12. Herbivore Impact on Tundra Plant Community Dynamics Using Long-term Remote Sensing Observation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Q.; Engstrom, R.; Shiklomanov, N. I.

    2014-12-01

    Arctic tundra biome is now experiencing dramatic environmental changes accentuated by summer sea-ice decline, permafrost thaw, and shrub expansion. Multi-decadal time-series of the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI, a spectral metric of vegetation productivity) shows an overall "greening" trend across the Arctic tundra biome. Regional trends in climate plausibly explain large-scale patterns of increasing plant productivity, as diminished summer sea-ice extent warms the adjacent land causing tundra vegetation to respond positively (increased photosynthetic aboveground biomass). However, at more local scales, there is a great deal of spatial variability in NDVI trends that likely reflects differences in hydrology and soil conditions, disturbance history, and use by wildlife and humans. Particularly, habitat use by large herbivores, such as reindeer and caribou, has large impacts on vegetation dynamics at local and regional scales, but the role of herbivores in modulating the response of vegetation to warming climate has received little attention. This study investigates regional tundra plant community dynamics within inhabits of different sizes of wild caribou/reindeer herds across the Arctic using GIMMS NDVI (Normalized Difference Vegetation Index) 3g data product. The Taimyr herd in Russia is one of the largest herds in the world with a population increase from 450,000 in 1975 to about 1 million animals in 2000. The population of the porcupine caribou herd has fluctuated in the past three decades between 100,000 and 180,000. Time-series of the maximum NDVI within the inhabit area of the Taimyr herd has increased about 2% per decade over the past three decades, while within the inhabit area of the Porcupine herd the maximum NDVI has increased about 5% per decade. Our results indicate that the impact of large herbivores can be detected from space and further analyses on seasonal dynamics of vegetation indices and herbivore behavior may provide more

  13. Macroevolutionary chemical escalation in an ancient plant-herbivore arms race.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Becerra, Judith X; Noge, Koji; Venable, D Lawrence

    2009-10-27

    A central paradigm in the field of plant-herbivore interactions is that the diversity and complexity of secondary compounds in plants have intensified over evolutionary time, resulting in the great variety of secondary products that currently exists. Unfortunately, testing of this proposal has been very limited. We analyzed the volatile chemistry of 70 species of the tropical plant genus Bursera and used a molecular phylogeny to test whether the species' chemical diversity or complexity have escalated. The results confirm that as new species diverged over time they tended to be armed not only with more compounds/species, but also with compounds that could potentially be more difficult for herbivores to adapt to because they belong to an increasing variety of chemical pathways. Overall chemical diversity in the genus also increased, but not as fast as species diversity, possibly because of allopatric species gaining improved defense with compounds that are new locally, but already in existence elsewhere.

  14. Plant protein and secondary metabolites influence diet selection in a mammalian specialist herbivore

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ulappa, Amy C.; Kelsey, Rick G.; Frye, Graham G.; Rachlow, Janet L.; Shipley, Lisa A.; Bond, Laura; Pu, Xinzhu; Forbey, Jennifer Sorensen

    2015-01-01

    For herbivores, nutrient intake is limited by the relatively low nutritional quality of plants and high concentrations of potentially toxic defensive compounds (plant secondary metabolites, PSMs) produced by many plants. In response to phytochemical challenges, some herbivores selectively forage on plants with higher nutrient and lower PSM concentrations relative to other plants. Pygmy rabbits (Brachylagus idahoensis) are dietary specialists that feed on sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) and forage on specific plants more than others within a foraging patch. We predicted that the plants with evidence of heavy foraging (browsed plants) would be of higher dietary quality than plants that were not browsed (unbrowsed). We used model selection to determine which phytochemical variables best explained the difference between browsed and unbrowsed plants. Higher crude protein increased the odds that plants would be browsed by pygmy rabbits and the opposite was the case for certain PSMs. Additionally, because pygmy rabbits can occupy foraging patches (burrows) for consecutive years, their browsing may influence the nutritional and PSM constituents of plants at the burrows. In a post hoc analysis, we did not find a significant relationship between phytochemical concentrations, browse status and burrow occupancy length. We concluded that pygmy rabbits use nutritional and chemical cues while making foraging decisions. PMID:26366011

  15. Field growth analysis of Utricularia stygia and U. intermedia-two aquatic carnivorous plants with dimorphic shoots

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Adamec, Lubomír

    2010-01-01

    Roč. 49, č. 2 (2010), s. 241-251 ISSN 0079-2047 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516 Keywords : aquatic carnivorous plant s * Lentibulariaceae * dystrophic water Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 0.462, year: 2010

  16. Plant interactions with multiple insect herbivores: from community to genes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Stam, J.M.; Kroes, A.; Li, Y.; Gols, R.; Loon, van J.J.A.; Poelman, E.H.; Dicke, M.

    2014-01-01

    Every plant is a member of a complex insect community that consists of tens to hundreds of species that belong to different trophic levels. The dynamics of this community are critically influenced by the plant, which mediates interactions between community members that can occur on the plant

  17. Mining the plant-herbivore interface with a leafmining Drosophila of Arabidopsis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whiteman, Noah K.; Groen, Simon C.; Chevasco, Daniela; Bear, Ashley; Beckwith, Noor; Gregory, T. Ryan; Denoux, Carine; Mammarella, Nicole; Ausubel, Frederick M.; Pierce, Naomi E.

    2010-01-01

    Experimental infections of Arabidopsis thaliana (Arabidopsis) with genomically characterized plant pathogens such as Pseudomonas syringae have facilitated dissection of canonical eukaryotic defense pathways and parasite virulence factors. Plants are also attacked by herbivorous insects, and the development of an ecologically relevant genetic model herbivore that feeds on Arabidopsis will enable the parallel dissection of host defense and reciprocal resistance pathways such as those involved in xenobiotic metabolism. An ideal candidate is Scaptomyza flava, a drosophilid fly whose leafmining larvae are true herbivores that can be found in nature feeding on Arabidopsis and other crucifers. Here we describe the eukaryotic life cycle of S. flava on Arabidopsis, and use multiple approaches to characterize the response of Arabidopsis to S. flava attack. Oviposition choice tests and growth performance assays on different Arabidopsis ecotypes, defense-related mutants, and hormone and chitin-treated plants revealed significant differences in host preference and variation in larval performance across Arabidopsis accessions. The jasmonate (JA) and glucosinolate pathways in Arabidopsis are important in mediating quantitative resistance against S. flava, and priming with JA or chitin resulted in increased resistance. Expression of xenobiotic detoxification genes was reduced in S. flava larvae reared on Arabidopsis JA signaling mutants, and increased in plants pre-treated with chitin. These results and future research directions are discussed in the context of developing a genetic model system to analyze insect/plant interactions. PMID:21073583

  18. Host-plant-mediated effects of Nadefensin on herbivore and pathogen resistance in Nicotiana attenuata

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Baldwin Ian T

    2008-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The adage from Shakespeare, "troubles, not as single spies, but in battalions come," holds true for Nicotiana attenuata, which is commonly attacked by both pathogens (Pseudomonas spp. and herbivores (Manduca sexta in its native habitats. Defense responses targeted against the pathogens can directly or indirectly influence the responses against the herbivores. Nadefensin is an effective induced defense gene against the bacterial pathogen Pseudomonas syringae pv tomato (PST DC3000, which is also elicited by attack from M. sexta larvae, but whether this defense protein influences M. sexta's growth and whether M. sexta-induced Nadefensin directly or indirectly influences PST DC3000 resistance are unknown. Results M. sexta larvae consumed less on WT and on Nadefensin-silenced N. attenuata plants that had previously been infected with PST DC3000 than on uninfected plants. WT plants infected with PST DC3000 showed enhanced resistance to PST DC3000 and decreased leaf consumption by M. sexta larvae, but larval mass gain was unaffected. PST DC3000-infected Nadefensin-silenced plants were less resistant to subsequent PST DC3000 challenge, and on these plants, M. sexta larvae consumed less and gained less mass. WT and Nadefensin-silenced plants previously damaged by M. sexta larvae were better able to resist subsequent PST DC3000 challenges than were undamaged plants. Conclusion These results demonstrate that Na-defensin directly mediates defense against PST DC3000 and indirectly against M. sexta in N. attenuata. In plants that were previously infected with PST DC3000, the altered leaf chemistry in PST DC3000-resistant WT plants and PST DC3000-susceptible Nadefensin-silenced plants differentially reduced M. sexta's leaf consumption and mass gain. In plants that were previously damaged by M. sexta, the combined effect of the altered host plant chemistry and a broad spectrum of anti-herbivore induced metabolomic responses was more

  19. Nocturnal herbivore-induced plant volatiles attract the generalist predatory earwig Doru luteipes Scudder

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naranjo-Guevara, Natalia; Peñaflor, Maria Fernanda G. V.; Cabezas-Guerrero, Milton F.; Bento, José Maurício S.

    2017-10-01

    Numerous studies have demonstrated that entomophagous arthropods use herbivore-induced plant volatile (HIPV) blends to search for their prey or host. However, no study has yet focused on the response of nocturnal predators to volatile blends emitted by prey damaged plants. We investigated the olfactory behavioral responses of the night-active generalist predatory earwig Doru luteipes Scudder (Dermaptera: Forficulidae) to diurnal and nocturnal volatile blends emitted by maize plants ( Zea mays) attacked by either a stem borer ( Diatraea saccharalis) or a leaf-chewing caterpillar ( Spodoptera frugiperda), both suitable lepidopteran prey. Additionally, we examined whether the earwig preferred odors emitted from short- or long-term damaged maize. We first determined the earwig diel foraging rhythm and confirmed that D. luteipes is a nocturnal predator. Olfactometer assays showed that during the day, although the earwigs were walking actively, they did not discriminate the volatiles of undamaged maize plants from those of herbivore damaged maize plants. In contrast, at night, earwigs preferred volatiles emitted by maize plants attacked by D. saccharalis or S. frugiperda over undamaged plants and short- over long-term damaged maize. Our GC-MS analysis revealed that short-term damaged nocturnal plant volatile blends were comprised mainly of fatty acid derivatives (i.e., green leaf volatiles), while the long-term damaged plant volatile blend contained mostly terpenoids. We also observed distinct volatile blend composition emitted by maize damaged by the different caterpillars. Our results showed that D. luteipes innately uses nocturnal herbivore-induced plant volatiles to search for prey. Moreover, the attraction of the earwig to short-term damaged plants is likely mediated by fatty acid derivatives.

  20. An insect herbivore microbiome with high plant biomass-degrading capacity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Garret Suen

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available Herbivores can gain indirect access to recalcitrant carbon present in plant cell walls through symbiotic associations with lignocellulolytic microbes. A paradigmatic example is the leaf-cutter ant (Tribe: Attini, which uses fresh leaves to cultivate a fungus for food in specialized gardens. Using a combination of sugar composition analyses, metagenomics, and whole-genome sequencing, we reveal that the fungus garden microbiome of leaf-cutter ants is composed of a diverse community of bacteria with high plant biomass-degrading capacity. Comparison of this microbiome's predicted carbohydrate-degrading enzyme profile with other metagenomes shows closest similarity to the bovine rumen, indicating evolutionary convergence of plant biomass degrading potential between two important herbivorous animals. Genomic and physiological characterization of two dominant bacteria in the fungus garden microbiome provides evidence of their capacity to degrade cellulose. Given the recent interest in cellulosic biofuels, understanding how large-scale and rapid plant biomass degradation occurs in a highly evolved insect herbivore is of particular relevance for bioenergy.

  1. An Insect Herbivore Microbiome with High Plant Biomass-Degrading Capacity

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Suen, Garret; Barry, Kerrie; Goodwin, Lynne; Scott, Jarrod; Aylward, Frank; Adams, Sandra; Pinto-Tomas, Adrian; Foster, Clifton; Pauly, Markus; Weimer, Paul; Bouffard, Pascal; Li, Lewyn; Osterberger, Jolene; Harkins, Timothy; Slater, Steven; Donohue, Timothy; Currie, Cameron; Tringe, Susannah G.

    2010-09-23

    Herbivores can gain indirect access to recalcitrant carbon present in plant cell walls through symbiotic associations with lignocellulolytic microbes. A paradigmatic example is the leaf-cutter ant (Tribe: Attini), which uses fresh leaves to cultivate a fungus for food in specialized gardens. Using a combination of sugar composition analyses, metagenomics, and whole-genome sequencing, we reveal that the fungus garden microbiome of leaf-cutter ants is composed of a diverse community of bacteria with high plant biomass-degrading capacity. Comparison of this microbiome?s predicted carbohydrate-degrading enzyme profile with other metagenomes shows closest similarity to the bovine rumen, indicating evolutionary convergence of plant biomass degrading potential between two important herbivorous animals. Genomic and physiological characterization of two dominant bacteria in the fungus garden microbiome provides evidence of their capacity to degrade cellulose. Given the recent interest in cellulosic biofuels, understanding how large-scale and rapid plant biomass degradation occurs in a highly evolved insect herbivore is of particular relevance for bioenergy.

  2. Complex Odor from Plants under Attack: Herbivore's Enemies React to the Whole, Not Its Parts

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Wijk, Michiel; de Bruijn, Paulien J. A.; Sabelis, Maurice W.

    2011-01-01

    Background Insect herbivory induces plant odors that attract herbivores' natural enemies. Assuming this attraction emerges from individual compounds, genetic control over odor emission of crops may provide a rationale for manipulating the distribution of predators used for pest control. However, studies on odor perception in vertebrates and invertebrates suggest that olfactory information processing of mixtures results in odor percepts that are a synthetic whole and not a set of components that could function as recognizable individual attractants. Here, we ask if predators respond to herbivore-induced attractants in odor mixtures or to odor mixture as a whole. Methodology/Principal Findings We studied a system consisting of Lima bean, the herbivorous mite Tetranychus urticae and the predatory mite Phytoseiulus persimilis. We found that four herbivore-induced bean volatiles are not attractive in pure form while a fifth, methyl salicylate (MeSA), is. Several reduced mixtures deficient in one component compared to the full spider-mite induced blend were not attractive despite the presence of MeSA indicating that the predators cannot detect this component in these odor mixtures. A mixture of all five HIPV is most attractive, when offered together with the non-induced odor of Lima bean. Odors that elicit no response in their pure form were essential components of the attractive mixture. Conclusions/Significance We conclude that the predatory mites perceive odors as a synthetic whole and that the hypothesis that predatory mites recognize attractive HIPV in odor mixtures is unsupported. PMID:21765908

  3. Complex odor from plants under attack: herbivore's enemies react to the whole, not its parts.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michiel van Wijk

    Full Text Available Insect herbivory induces plant odors that attract herbivores' natural enemies. Assuming this attraction emerges from individual compounds, genetic control over odor emission of crops may provide a rationale for manipulating the distribution of predators used for pest control. However, studies on odor perception in vertebrates and invertebrates suggest that olfactory information processing of mixtures results in odor percepts that are a synthetic whole and not a set of components that could function as recognizable individual attractants. Here, we ask if predators respond to herbivore-induced attractants in odor mixtures or to odor mixture as a whole.We studied a system consisting of Lima bean, the herbivorous mite Tetranychus urticae and the predatory mite Phytoseiulus persimilis. We found that four herbivore-induced bean volatiles are not attractive in pure form while a fifth, methyl salicylate (MeSA, is. Several reduced mixtures deficient in one component compared to the full spider-mite induced blend were not attractive despite the presence of MeSA indicating that the predators cannot detect this component in these odor mixtures. A mixture of all five HIPV is most attractive, when offered together with the non-induced odor of Lima bean. Odors that elicit no response in their pure form were essential components of the attractive mixture.We conclude that the predatory mites perceive odors as a synthetic whole and that the hypothesis that predatory mites recognize attractive HIPV in odor mixtures is unsupported.

  4. A Latex Metabolite Benefits Plant Fitness under Root Herbivore Attack

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Huber, M.; Epping, Janina; Schulze Gronover, C.; Fricke, Julia; Aziz, Zohra; Brillatz, Théo; Swyers, Michael; Kollner, T.G.; Vogel, H.; Hammerbacher, Almuth; Triebwasser-Freese, Daniella; Robert, Christelle A.M.; Verhoeven, K.J.F.; Preite, V.; Gershenzon, J.; Erb, M.

    2016-01-01

    Plants produce large amounts of secondary metabolites in their shoots and roots and store them in specialized secretory structures. Although secondary metabolites and their secretory structures are commonly assumed to have a defensive function, evidence that they benefit plant fitness under

  5. A below-ground herbivore shapes root defensive chemistry in natural plant populations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huber, Meret; Bont, Zoe; Fricke, Julia; Brillatz, Théo; Aziz, Zohra; Gershenzon, Jonathan; Erb, Matthias

    2016-03-30

    Plants display extensive intraspecific variation in secondary metabolites. However, the selective forces shaping this diversity remain often unknown, especially below ground. Using Taraxacum officinale and its major native insect root herbivore Melolontha melolontha, we tested whether below-ground herbivores drive intraspecific variation in root secondary metabolites. We found that high M. melolontha infestation levels over recent decades are associated with high concentrations of major root latex secondary metabolites across 21 central European T. officinale field populations. By cultivating offspring of these populations, we show that both heritable variation and phenotypic plasticity contribute to the observed differences. Furthermore, we demonstrate that the production of the sesquiterpene lactone taraxinic acid β-D-glucopyranosyl ester (TA-G) is costly in the absence, but beneficial in the presence of M. melolontha, resulting in divergent selection of TA-G. Our results highlight the role of soil-dwelling insects for the evolution of plant defences in nature. © 2016 The Author(s).

  6. The Metagenome of Utricularia gibba's Traps: Into the Microbial Input to a Carnivorous Plant

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alcaraz, Luis David; Martínez-Sánchez, Shamayim; Torres, Ignacio; Ibarra-Laclette, Enrique; Herrera-Estrella, Luis

    2016-01-01

    The genome and transcriptome sequences of the aquatic, rootless, and carnivorous plant Utricularia gibba L. (Lentibulariaceae), were recently determined. Traps are necessary for U. gibba because they help the plant to survive in nutrient-deprived environments. The U. gibba's traps (Ugt) are specialized structures that have been proposed to selectively filter microbial inhabitants. To determine whether the traps indeed have a microbiome that differs, in composition or abundance, from the microbiome in the surrounding environment, we used whole-genome shotgun (WGS) metagenomics to describe both the taxonomic and functional diversity of the Ugt microbiome. We collected U. gibba plants from their natural habitat and directly sequenced the metagenome of the Ugt microbiome and its surrounding water. The total predicted number of species in the Ugt was more than 1,100. Using pan-genome fragment recruitment analysis, we were able to identify to the species level of some key Ugt players, such as Pseudomonas monteilii. Functional analysis of the Ugt metagenome suggests that the trap microbiome plays an important role in nutrient scavenging and assimilation while complementing the hydrolytic functions of the plant. PMID:26859489

  7. The role of herbivore- and plant-related experiences in intraspecific host preference of a relatively specialized parasitoid.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morawo, Tolulope; Fadamiro, Henry

    2017-09-06

    Parasitoids use odor cues from infested plants and herbivore hosts to locate their hosts. Specialist parasitoids of generalist herbivores are predicted to rely more on herbivore-derived cues than plant-derived cues. Microplitis croceipes (Cresson) (Hymenoptera: Braconidae) is a relatively specialized larval endoparasitoid of Heliothis virescens (F.) (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae), which is a generalist herbivore on several crops including cotton and soybean. Using M. croceipes/H. virescens as a model system, we tested the following predictions about specialist parasitoids of generalist herbivores: (i) naive parasitoids will show innate responses to herbivore-emitted kairomones, regardless of host plant identity and (ii) herbivore-related experience will have a greater influence on intraspecific oviposition preference than plant-related experience. Inexperienced (naive) female M. croceipes did not discriminate between cotton-fed and soybean-fed H. virescens in oviposition choice tests, supporting our first prediction. Oviposition experience alone with either host group influenced subsequent oviposition preference while experience with infested plants alone did not elicit preference in M. croceipes, supporting our second prediction. Furthermore, associative learning of oviposition with host-damaged plants facilitated host location. Interestingly, naive parasitoids attacked more soybean-fed than cotton-fed host larvae in two-choice tests when a background of host-infested cotton odor was supplied, and vice versa. This suggests that plant volatiles may have created an olfactory contrast effect. We discussed ecological significance of the results and concluded that both plant- and herbivore-related experiences play important role in parasitoid host foraging. © 2017 Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences.

  8. Urban land use decouples plant-herbivore-parasitoid interactions at multiple spatial scales.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amanda E Nelson

    Full Text Available Intense urban and agricultural development alters habitats, increases fragmentation, and may decouple trophic interactions if plants or animals cannot disperse to needed resources. Specialist insects represent a substantial proportion of global biodiversity and their fidelity to discrete microhabitats provides a powerful framework for investigating organismal responses to human land use. We sampled site occupancy and densities for two plant-herbivore-parasitoid systems from 250 sites across a 360 km2 urban/agricultural landscape to ask whether and how human development decouples interactions between trophic levels. We compared patterns of site occupancy, host plant density, herbivory and parasitism rates of insects at two trophic levels with respect to landcover at multiple spatial scales. Geospatial analyses were used to identify landcover characters predictive of insect distributions. We found that herbivorous insect densities were decoupled from host tree densities in urban landcover types at several spatial scales. This effect was amplified for the third trophic level in one of the two insect systems: despite being abundant regionally, a parasitoid species was absent from all urban/suburban landcover even where its herbivore host was common. Our results indicate that human land use patterns limit distributions of specialist insects. Dispersal constraints associated with urban built development are specifically implicated as a limiting factor.

  9. Secondary Plant Products Causing Photosensitization in Grazing Herbivores: Their Structure, Activity and Regulation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jane C. Quinn

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Photosensitivity in animals is defined as a severe dermatitis that results from a heightened reactivity of skin cells and associated dermal tissues upon their exposure to sunlight, following ingestion or contact with UV reactive secondary plant products. Photosensitivity occurs in animal cells as a reaction that is mediated by a light absorbing molecule, specifically in this case a plant-produced metabolite that is heterocyclic or polyphenolic. In sensitive animals, this reaction is most severe in non-pigmented skin which has the least protection from UV or visible light exposure. Photosensitization in a biological system such as the epidermis is an oxidative or other chemical change in a molecule in response to light-induced excitation of endogenous or exogenously-delivered molecules within the tissue. Photo-oxidation can also occur in the plant itself, resulting in the generation of reactive oxygen species, free radical damage and eventual DNA degradation. Similar cellular changes occur in affected herbivores and are associated with an accumulation of photodynamic molecules in the affected dermal tissues or circulatory system of the herbivore. Recent advances in our ability to identify and detect secondary products at trace levels in the plant and surrounding environment, or in organisms that ingest plants, have provided additional evidence for the role of secondary metabolites in photosensitization of grazing herbivores. This review outlines the role of unique secondary products produced by higher plants in the animal photosensitization process, describes their chemistry and localization in the plant as well as impacts of the environment upon their production, discusses their direct and indirect effects on associated animal systems and presents several examples of well-characterized plant photosensitization in animal systems.

  10. Plant diversification promotes biocontrol services in peach orchards by shaping the ecological niches of insect herbivores and their natural enemies

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wan, Nian Feng; Ji, Xiang Yun; Deng, Jian Yu

    2018-01-01

    Ecological niche indicators have been scarcely adopted to assess the biological control of insect herbivores by their natural enemies. We hypothesize that plant diversification promotes the biocontrol services by narrowing the niches of herbivores and broadening the niches of natural enemies....... Our study reveals that plant diversification promotes the biocontrol services by shaping the niche of herbivores and natural enemies, and provides a new assessment method to understand the biodiversity-niche-ecosystem management interactions........ In a large-scale experiment, we found that the abundance of natural enemies was increased by 38.1%, and the abundance of insect herbivores was decreased by 16.9% in peach orchards with plant diversification (treatment) compared to ones with monoculture (control). Stratified sampling indicated...

  11. The Effect of Host-Plant Phylogenetic Isolation on Species Richness, Composition and Specialization of Insect Herbivores: A Comparison between Native and Exotic Hosts.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julio Miguel Grandez-Rios

    Full Text Available Understanding the drivers of plant-insect interactions is still a key issue in terrestrial ecology. Here, we used 30 well-defined plant-herbivore assemblages to assess the effects of host plant phylogenetic isolation and origin (native vs. exotic on the species richness, composition and specialization of the insect herbivore fauna on co-occurring plant species. We also tested for differences in such effects between assemblages composed exclusively of exophagous and endophagous herbivores. We found a consistent negative effect of the phylogenetic isolation of host plants on the richness, similarity and specialization of their insect herbivore faunas. Notably, except for Jaccard dissimilarity, the effect of phylogenetic isolation on the insect herbivore faunas did not vary between native and exotic plants. Our findings show that the phylogenetic isolation of host plants is a key factor that influences the richness, composition and specialization of their local herbivore faunas, regardless of the host plant origin.

  12. Herbivore-plant interactions and desertification in arid lands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arid lands around the world have experienced or are currently experiencing degradation that is known as desertification. Animal-plant interactions that have an effect on desertification are among the most important function of animals in arid ecosystems. Desertification has been defined as land de...

  13. Vertebrate herbivores influence soil nematodes by modifying plant communities

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Veen, G. F. (Ciska); Olff, Han; Duyts, Henk; van der Putten, Wim H.

    Abiotic soil properties, plant community composition, and herbivory all have been reported as important factors influencing the composition of soil communities. However, most studies thus far have considered these factors in isolation, whereas they strongly interact in the field. Here, we study how

  14. Interactions between Plant Metabolites Affect Herbivores: A Study with Pyrrolizidine Alkaloids and Chlorogenic Acid

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Xiaojie; Vrieling, Klaas; Klinkhamer, Peter G.L.

    2017-01-01

    The high structural diversity of plant metabolites suggests that interactions among them should be common. We investigated the effects of single metabolites and combinations of plant metabolites on insect herbivores. In particular we studied the interacting effects of pyrrolizidine alkaloid (PAs), and chlorogenic acid (CGA), on a generalist herbivore, Frankliniella occidentalis. We studied both the predominantly occurring PA N-oxides and the less frequent PA free bases. We found antagonistic effects between CGA and PA free bases on thrips mortality. In contrast PA N-oxides showed synergistic interactions with CGA. PA free bases caused a higher thrips mortality than PA N-oxides while the reverse was through for PAs in combination with CGA. Our results provide an explanation for the predominate storage of PA N-oxides in plants. We propose that antagonistic interactions represent a constraint on the accumulation of plant metabolites, as we found here for Jacobaea vulgaris. The results show that the bioactivity of a given metabolite is not merely dependent upon the amount and chemical structure of that metabolite, but also on the co-occurrence metabolites in, e.g., plant cells, tissues and organs. The significance of this study is beyond the concerns of the two specific groups tested here. The current study is one of the few studies so far that experimentally support the general conception that the interactions among plant metabolites are of great importance to plant-environment interactions. PMID:28611815

  15. Interactions between Plant Metabolites Affect Herbivores: A Study with Pyrrolizidine Alkaloids and Chlorogenic Acid

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaojie Liu

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available The high structural diversity of plant metabolites suggests that interactions among them should be common. We investigated the effects of single metabolites and combinations of plant metabolites on insect herbivores. In particular we studied the interacting effects of pyrrolizidine alkaloid (PAs, and chlorogenic acid (CGA, on a generalist herbivore, Frankliniella occidentalis. We studied both the predominantly occurring PA N-oxides and the less frequent PA free bases. We found antagonistic effects between CGA and PA free bases on thrips mortality. In contrast PA N-oxides showed synergistic interactions with CGA. PA free bases caused a higher thrips mortality than PA N-oxides while the reverse was through for PAs in combination with CGA. Our results provide an explanation for the predominate storage of PA N-oxides in plants. We propose that antagonistic interactions represent a constraint on the accumulation of plant metabolites, as we found here for Jacobaea vulgaris. The results show that the bioactivity of a given metabolite is not merely dependent upon the amount and chemical structure of that metabolite, but also on the co-occurrence metabolites in, e.g., plant cells, tissues and organs. The significance of this study is beyond the concerns of the two specific groups tested here. The current study is one of the few studies so far that experimentally support the general conception that the interactions among plant metabolites are of great importance to plant-environment interactions.

  16. A test of the herbivore optimization hypothesis using muskoxen and a graminoid meadow plant community

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David L. Smith

    1996-01-01

    Full Text Available A prediction from the herbivore optimization hypothesis is that grazing by herbivores at moderate intensities will increase net above-ground primary productivity more than at lower or higher intensities. I tested this hypothesis in an area of high muskox {Ovibos moschatus density on north-central Banks Island, Northwest Territories, Canada (73°50'N, 119°53'W. Plots (1 m2 in graminoid meadows dominated by cottongrass (Eriophorum triste were either clipped, exposed to muskoxen, protected for part of one growing season, or permanently protected. This resulted in the removal of 22-44%, 10-39%, 0-39% or 0%, respectively, of shoot tissue during each growing season. Contrary to the predictions of the herbivore optimization hypothesis, productivity did not increase across this range of tissue removal. Productivity of plants clipped at 1.5 cm above ground once or twice per growing season, declined by 60+/-5% in 64% of the tests. The productivity of plants grazed by muskoxen declined by 56+/-7% in 25% of the tests. No significant change in productivity was observed in 36% and 75% of the tests in clipped and grazed treatments, respecrively. Clipping and grazing reduced below-ground standing crop except where removals were small. Grazing and clipping did not stimulate productivity of north-central Banks Island graminoid meadows.

  17. An insect-feeding guild of carnivorous plants and spiders: does optimal foraging lead to competition or facilitation?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crowley, Philip H; Hopper, Kevin R; Krupa, James J

    2013-12-01

    Carnivorous plants and spiders, along with their prey, are main players in an insect-feeding guild found on acidic, poorly drained soils in disturbed habitat. Darwin's notion that these plants must actively attract the insects they capture raises the possibility that spiders could benefit from proximity to prey hotspots created by the plants. Alternatively, carnivorous plants and spiders may deplete prey locally or (through insect redistribution) more widely, reducing each other's gain rates from predation. Here, we formulate and analyze a model of this guild, parameterized for carnivorous sundews and lycosid spiders, under assumptions of random movement by insects and optimal foraging by predators. Optimal foraging here involves gain maximization via trap investment (optimal web sizes and sundew trichome densities) and an ideal free distribution of spiders between areas with and without sundews. We find no facilitation: spiders and sundews engage in intense exploitation competition. Insect attraction by plants modestly increases sundew gain rates but slightly decreases spider gain rates. In the absence of population size structure, optimal spider redistribution between areas with and without sundews yields web sizes that are identical for all spiders, regardless of proximity to sundews. Web-building spiders have higher gain rates than wandering spiders in this system at high insect densities, but wandering spiders have the advantage at low insect densities. Results are complex, indicating that predictions to be tested empirically must be based on careful quantitative assessment.

  18. The genetics of indirect ecological effects - plant parasites and aphid herbivores

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jennifer K Rowntree

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available When parasitic plants and aphid herbivores share a host, both direct and indirect ecological effects (IEEs can influence evolutionary processes. We used a hemiparasitic plant (Rhinanthus minor, a grass host (Hordeum vulgare and a cereal aphid (Sitobion avenae to investigate the genetics of IEEs between the aphid and the parasitic plant, and looked to see how these might affect or be influenced by the genetic diversity of the host plants. Survival of R. minor depended on the parasite’s population of origin, the genotypes of the aphids sharing the host and the genetic diversity in the host plant community. Hence the indirect effects of the aphids on the parasitic plants depended on the genetic environment of the system. Here, we show that genetic variation can be important in determining the outcome of IEEs. Therefore, IEEs have the potential to influence evolutionary processes and the continuity of species interactions over time.

  19. High-throughput sequencing of ancient plant and mammal DNA preserved in herbivore middens

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Murray, Dáithí C.; Pearson, Stuart G.; Fullagar, Richard

    2012-01-01

    DNA analysis identified unreported plant and animal taxa, some of which are locally extinct or endemic. The survival and preservation of DNA in hot, arid environments is a complex and poorly understood process that is both sporadic and rare, but the survival of DNA through desiccation may be important......The study of arid palaeoenvironments is often frustrated by the poor or non-existent preservation of plant and animal material, yet these environments are of considerable environmental importance. The analysis of pollen and macrofossils isolated from herbivore middens has been an invaluable source...

  20. Treeline proximity alters an alpine plant-herbivore interaction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Illerbrun, Kurt; Roland, Jens

    2011-05-01

    Rising treeline threatens the size and contiguity of alpine meadows worldwide. As trees encroach into previously open habitat, the movement and population dynamics of above-treeline alpine species may be disrupted. This process is well documented in studies of the Rocky Mountain apollo butterfly (Parnassius smintheus). However, subtler consequences of treeline rise remain poorly understood. In this study, we examine whether treeline proximity affects feeding behaviour of P. smintheus larvae, due to altered habitat affecting the distribution and availability of their host plant, lance-leaved stonecrop (Sedum lanceolatum). Understanding differential larval exploitation of food resources in relation to the treeline is an important step in predicting the consequences of continued treeline rise. Parnassius smintheus larvae feed more intensively on S. lanceolatum away from the treeline despite the relative paucity of hosts in these areas, and despite higher fitness penalties associated with the plant's herbivory-induced chemical defenses. Sedum lanceolatum growing near the treeline is less attractive, and therefore represents a less significant resource for P. smintheus larvae than its abundance might imply. If treeline rise continues, we suggest that this pattern of altered resource exploitation may represent a mechanism by which larvae are adversely affected even while adult movement among and within meadows appears sufficient for maintaining population health, and total host availability seems ample.

  1. In vitro regeneration of Drosera burmannii Vahl.: a carnivorous plant of north-east India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yanthan, J Sureni; Kehie, Mechuselie; Kumaria, Suman; Tandon, Pramod

    2017-06-01

    An efficient in vitro regeneration protocol has been developed from shoot tips of Drosera burmannii Vahl., a carnivorous plant of north-east India. Various plant growth regulators were used to study their efficacy in the induction of multiple shoots and roots. Of the various treatments, the maximum number of shoots (28.8 ± 1.5) and roots (9.7 ± 0.6) was observed in one-fourth strength standard medium (MS with 50 mg/l citric acid and 10 mg/l ascorbic acid) supplemented with 4 mg/l 6-benzylaminopurine (BAP) and 4 mg/l α-naphthalene acetic acid (NAA) followed by 26.8 ± 1.4 shoots in one-fourth strength SM fortified with 4 mg/l kinetin (KN) and 4 mg/l NAA. The well-developed plantlets with shoots and roots were potted in small plastic glasses filled with a mixture of sand and farmyard manure (3:1); these plantlets when transferred to a glasshouse for hardening and acclimatization showed 90% survival.

  2. Linking the development and functioning of a carnivorous pitcher plant's microbial digestive community.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Armitage, David W

    2017-11-01

    Ecosystem development theory predicts that successional turnover in community composition can influence ecosystem functioning. However, tests of this theory in natural systems are made difficult by a lack of replicable and tractable model systems. Using the microbial digestive associates of a carnivorous pitcher plant, I tested hypotheses linking host age-driven microbial community development to host functioning. Monitoring the yearlong development of independent microbial digestive communities in two pitcher plant populations revealed a number of trends in community succession matching theoretical predictions. These included mid-successional peaks in bacterial diversity and metabolic substrate use, predictable and parallel successional trajectories among microbial communities, and convergence giving way to divergence in community composition and carbon substrate use. Bacterial composition, biomass, and diversity positively influenced the rate of prey decomposition, which was in turn positively associated with a host leaf's nitrogen uptake efficiency. Overall digestive performance was greatest during late summer. These results highlight links between community succession and ecosystem functioning and extend succession theory to host-associated microbial communities.

  3. Carnivorous Nutrition in Pitcher Plants (Nepenthes spp.) via an Unusual Complement of Endogenous Enzymes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Linda; Zhang, Ye; Ozar, Brittany; Sensen, Christoph W; Schriemer, David C

    2016-09-02

    Plants belonging to the genus Nepenthes are carnivorous, using specialized pitfall traps called "pitchers" that attract, capture, and digest insects as a primary source of nutrients. We have used RNA sequencing to generate a cDNA library from the Nepenthes pitchers and applied it to mass spectrometry-based identification of the enzymes secreted into the pitcher fluid using a nonspecific digestion strategy superior to trypsin in this application. This first complete catalog of the pitcher fluid subproteome includes enzymes across a variety of functional classes. The most abundant proteins present in the secreted fluid are proteases, nucleases, peroxidases, chitinases, a phosphatase, and a glucanase. Nitrogen recovery involves a particularly rich complement of proteases. In addition to the two expected aspartic proteases, we discovered three novel nepenthensins, two prolyl endopeptidases that we name neprosins, and a putative serine carboxypeptidase. Additional proteins identified are relevant to pathogen-defense and secretion mechanisms. The full complement of acid-stable enzymes discovered in this study suggests that carnivory in the genus Nepenthes can be sustained by plant-based mechanisms alone and does not absolutely require bacterial symbiosis.

  4. Insects on plants: Diversity of herbivore assemblages revisited

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Lewinsohn, T. M.; Novotný, Vojtěch; Basset, Y.

    2005-01-01

    Roč. 36, - (2005), s. 597-620 ISSN 1543-592X R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GA206/04/0725; GA ČR(CZ) GD206/03/H034; GA AV ČR(CZ) IAA6007106; GA MŠk(CZ) ME 646 Grant - others:Fundacao de Amaparo a Pesquisa do Estado de Sao Paulo(BR) Biota/Fapesp 98/05085-2; Conselho Nacional de Densenvolvimento Cientifico e Tecnologico-Brasil(BR) 306049/2004-0; U. S. National Science Foundation(US) DEB-02-11591; Darwin Initiative fior the Survival of Species(GB) 162/10/030 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z5007907 Keywords : herbivory * insect-plant interactions * tropical insects Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 10.104, year: 2005

  5. Variation in herbivory-induced volatiles among cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.) varieties has consequences for the attraction of carnivorous natural enemies

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kappers, I.F.; Hoogerbrugge, H.; Bouwmeester, H.J.; Dicke, M.

    2011-01-01

    In response to herbivory by arthropods, plants emit herbivory-induced volatiles that attract carnivorous enemies of the inducing herbivores. Here, we compared the attractiveness of eight cucumber varieties (Cucumis sativus L.) to Phytoseiulus persimilis predatory mites after infestation of the

  6. Red trap colour of the carnivorous plant Drosera rotundifolia does not serve a prey attraction or camouflage function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foot, G; Rice, S P; Millett, J

    2014-01-01

    The traps of many carnivorous plants are red in colour. This has been widely hypothesized to serve a prey attraction function; colour has also been hypothesized to function as camouflage, preventing prey avoidance. We tested these two hypotheses in situ for the carnivorous plant Drosera rotundifolia. We conducted three separate studies: (i) prey attraction to artificial traps to isolate the influence of colour; (ii) prey attraction to artificial traps on artificial backgrounds to control the degree of contrast and (iii) observation of prey capture by D. rotundifolia to determine the effects of colour on prey capture. Prey were not attracted to green traps and were deterred from red traps. There was no evidence that camouflaged traps caught more prey. For D. rotundifolia, there was a relationship between trap colour and prey capture. However, trap colour may be confounded with other leaf traits. Thus, we conclude that for D. rotundifolia, red trap colour does not serve a prey attraction or camouflage function.

  7. Trophic complexity and the adaptive value of damage-induced plant volatiles.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ian Kaplan

    Full Text Available Indirect plant defenses are those facilitating the action of carnivores in ridding plants of their herbivorous consumers, as opposed to directly poisoning or repelling them. Of the numerous and diverse indirect defensive strategies employed by plants, inducible volatile production has garnered the most fascination among plant-insect ecologists. These volatile chemicals are emitted in response to feeding by herbivorous arthropods and serve to guide predators and parasitic wasps to their prey. Implicit in virtually all discussions of plant volatile-carnivore interactions is the premise that plants "call for help" to bodyguards that serve to boost plant fitness by limiting herbivore damage. This, by necessity, assumes a three-trophic level food chain where carnivores benefit plants, a theoretical framework that is conceptually tractable and convenient, but poorly depicts the complexity of food-web dynamics occurring in real communities. Recent work suggests that hyperparasitoids, top consumers acting from the fourth trophic level, exploit the same plant volatile cues used by third trophic level carnivores. Further, hyperparasitoids shift their foraging preferences, specifically cueing in to the odor profile of a plant being damaged by a parasitized herbivore that contains their host compared with damage from an unparasitized herbivore. If this outcome is broadly representative of plant-insect food webs at large, it suggests that damage-induced volatiles may not always be beneficial to plants with major implications for the evolution of anti-herbivore defense and manipulating plant traits to improve biological control in agricultural crops.

  8. Postfire Burnt-Wood Management Affects Plant Damage by Ungulate Herbivores

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jorge Castro

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available I analyze the effect of post-fire burnt wood management on herbivore attack on a woody plant species (Ulex parviflorus. Two experimental plots of ca. 20 hectares were established at two elevations in a burnt area in a Mediterranean mountain (Sierra Nevada, Spain. Three replicates of three treatments differing in post-fire burnt wood management were established per plot: “no intervention” (NI, all trees remained standing, “partial cut plus lopping” (PCL, felling the trees, cutting the main branches, and leaving all the biomass in situ, and “salvage logging” (SL; removal of logs and elimination of woody debris. Risk of herbivory and damage intensity were monitored for two years. The pattern of attack by ungulate herbivores varied among treatments and years. In any case, there was an overall reduction in the risk of herbivory in the PCL treatment, presumably because the highest habitat complexity in this treatment hampered ungulate movement and foraging. As a result, the burnt logs and branches spread over the ground acted as a physical barrier that protected seedlings from herbivores. This protection may be used for the regeneration of shrubs and trees, and it is of interest for the regeneration of burnt sites either naturally or by reforestation.

  9. Secreted pitfall-trap fluid of carnivorous Nepenthes plants is unsuitable for microbial growth.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buch, Franziska; Rott, Matthias; Rottloff, Sandy; Paetz, Christian; Hilke, Ines; Raessler, Michael; Mithöfer, Axel

    2013-03-01

    Carnivorous plants of the genus Nepenthes possess modified leaves that form pitfall traps in order to capture prey, mainly arthropods, to make additional nutrients available for the plant. These pitchers contain a digestive fluid due to the presence of hydrolytic enzymes. In this study, the composition of the digestive fluid was further analysed with regard to mineral nutrients and low molecular-weight compounds. A potential contribution of microbes to the composition of pitcher fluid was investigated. Fluids from closed pitchers were harvested and analysed for mineral nutrients using analytical techniques based on ion-chromatography and inductively coupled plasma-optical emission spectroscopy. Secondary metabolites were identified by a combination of LC-MS and NMR. The presence of bacteria in the pitcher fluid was investigated by PCR of 16S-rRNA genes. Growth analyses of bacteria and yeast were performed in vitro with harvested pitcher fluid and in vivo within pitchers with injected microbes. The pitcher fluid from closed pitchers was found to be primarily an approx. 25-mm KCl solution, which is free of bacteria and unsuitable for microbial growth probably due to the lack of essential mineral nutrients such as phosphate and inorganic nitrogen. The fluid also contained antimicrobial naphthoquinones, plumbagin and 7-methyl-juglone, and defensive proteins such as the thaumatin-like protein. Challenging with bacteria or yeast caused bactericide as well as fungistatic properties in the fluid. Our results reveal that Nepenthes pitcher fluids represent a dynamic system that is able to react to the presence of microbes. The secreted liquid of closed and freshly opened Nepenthes pitchers is exclusively plant-derived. It is unsuitable to serve as an environment for microbial growth. Thus, Nepenthes plants can avoid and control, at least to some extent, the microbial colonization of their pitfall traps and, thereby, reduce the need to vie with microbes for the prey

  10. Evidence for functional convergence in genes upregulated by herbivores ingesting plant secondary compounds

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-01-01

    Background Nearly 40 years ago, Freeland and Janzen predicted that liver biotransformation enzymes dictated diet selection by herbivores. Despite decades of research on model species and humans, little is known about the biotransformation mechanisms used by mammalian herbivores to metabolize plant secondary compounds (PSCs). We investigated the independent evolution of PSC biotransformation mechanisms by capitalizing on a dramatic diet change event—the dietary inclusion of creosote bush (Larrea tridentata)—that occurred in the recent evolutionary history of two species of woodrats (Neotoma lepida and N. bryanti). Results By comparing gene expression profiles of two populations of woodrats with evolutionary experience to creosote and one population naïve to creosote, we identified genes either induced by a diet containing creosote PSCs or constitutively higher in populations with evolutionary experience of creosote. Although only one detoxification gene (an aldo-keto reductase) was induced by both experienced populations, these populations converged upon functionally equivalent strategies to biotransform the PSCs of creosote bush by constitutively expressing aldehyde and alcohol dehydrogenases, Cytochromes P450s, methyltransferases, glutathione S-transferases and sulfotransferases. The response of the naïve woodrat population to creosote bush was indicative of extreme physiological stress. Conclusions The hepatic detoxification system of mammals is notoriously complex, with hundreds of known biotransformation enzymes. The comparison herein of woodrat taxa that differ in evolutionary and ecological experience with toxins in creosote bush reveals convergence in the overall strategies used by independent species after a historical shift in diet. In addition, remarkably few genes seemed to be important in this dietary shift. The research lays the requisite groundwork for future studies of specific biotransformation pathways used by woodrats to metabolize the

  11. Induced plant-defenses suppress herbivore reproduction but also constrain predation of their offspring.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ataide, Livia M S; Pappas, Maria L; Schimmel, Bernardus C J; Lopez-Orenes, Antonio; Alba, Juan M; Duarte, Marcus V A; Pallini, Angelo; Schuurink, Robert C; Kant, Merijn R

    2016-11-01

    Inducible anti-herbivore defenses in plants are predominantly regulated by jasmonic acid (JA). On tomato plants, most genotypes of the herbivorous generalist spider mite Tetranychus urticae induce JA defenses and perform poorly on it, whereas the Solanaceae specialist Tetranychus evansi, who suppresses JA defenses, performs well on it. We asked to which extent these spider mites and the predatory mite Phytoseiulus longipes preying on these spider mites eggs are affected by induced JA-defenses. By artificially inducing the JA-response of the tomato JA-biosynthesis mutant def-1 using exogenous JA and isoleucine (Ile), we first established the relationship between endogenous JA-Ile-levels and the reproductive performance of spider mites. For both mite species we observed that they produced more eggs when levels of JA-Ile were low. Subsequently, we allowed predatory mites to prey on spider mite-eggs derived from wild-type tomato plants, def-1 and JA-Ile-treated def-1 and observed that they preferred, and consumed more, eggs produced on tomato plants with weak JA defenses. However, predatory mite oviposition was similar across treatments. Our results show that induced JA-responses negatively affect spider mite performance, but positively affect the survival of their offspring by constraining egg-predation. Copyright © 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  12. Phenolic metabolites in carnivorous plants: Inter-specific comparison and physiological studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kováčik, Jozef; Klejdus, Bořivoj; Repčáková, Klára

    2012-03-01

    Despite intensive phytochemical research, data related to the accumulation of phenols in carnivorous plants include mainly qualitative reports. We have quantified phenolic metabolites in three species: Drosera capensis, Dionaea muscipula and Nepenthes anamensis in the "leaf" (assimilatory part) and the "trap" (digestive part). For comparison, commercial green tea was analysed. Phenylalanine ammonia-lyase (PAL) activities in Dionaea and Nepenthes were higher in the trap than in the leaf while the opposite was found in Drosera. Soluble phenols and majority of phenolic acids were mainly accumulated in the trap among species. Flavonoids were abundant in Drosera and Dionaea traps but not in Nepenthes. Phenolic acids were preferentially accumulated in a glycosidically-bound form and gallic acid was the main metabolite. Green tea contained more soluble phenols and phenolic acids but less quercetin. In vitro experiments with Drosera spathulata revealed that nitrogen deficiency enhances PAL activity, accumulation of phenols and sugars while PAL inhibitor (2-aminoindane-2-phosphonic acid) depleted phenols and some amino acids (but free phenylalanine and sugars were elevated). Possible explanations in physiological, biochemical and ecological context are discussed. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  13. Plant-herbivore interaction: dissection of the cellular pattern of Tetranychus urticae feeding on the host plant

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicolas Bensoussan

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available The two-spotted spider mite, Tetranychus urticae Koch (Acari: Tetranychidae, is one of the most polyphagous herbivores feeding on cell contents of over 1,100 plant species including more than 150 crops. It is being established as a model for chelicerate herbivores with tools that enable tracking of reciprocal responses in plant-spider mite interactions. However, despite their important pest status and a growing understanding of the molecular basis of interactions with plant hosts, knowledge of the way mites interface with the plant while feeding and the plant damage directly inflicted by mites is lacking. Here, utilizing histology and microscopy methods, we uncovered several key features of T. urticae feeding. By following the stylet path within the plant tissue, we determined that the stylet penetrates the leaf either in between epidermal pavement cells or through a stomatal opening, without damaging the epidermal cellular layer. Our recordings of mite feeding established that duration of the feeding event ranges from several minutes to more than half an hour, during which time mites consume a single mesophyll cell in a pattern that is common to both bean and Arabidopsis plant hosts. In addition, this study determined that leaf chlorotic spots, a common symptom of mite herbivory, do not form as an immediate consequence of mite feeding. Our results establish a cellular context for the plant-spider mite interaction that will support our understanding of the molecular mechanisms and cell signaling associated with spider mite feeding.

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

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    Anselmo Nogueira

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

  15. Arctic herbivore diet can be inferred from stable carbon and nitrogen isotopes in C3 plants, faeces and wool

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kristensen, Ditte; Kristensen, Erik; Forchhammer, Mads C.

    2011-01-01

    The use of stable isotopes in diet analysis usually relies on the different photosynthetic pathways of C3 and C4 plants, and the resulting difference in carbon isotope signature. In the Arctic, however, plant species are exclusively C3, and carbon isotopes alone are therefore not suitable......% graminoids and up to 20% willows. In conclusion, the diet composition of an arctic herbivore can indeed be inferred from stable isotopes in arctic areas, despite the lack of C4 plants...... for studying arctic herbivore diets. In this study, we examined the potential of both stable carbon and nitrogen isotopes to reconstruct the diet of an arctic herbivore, here the muskox (Ovibos moschatus (Zimmermann, 1780)), in northeast Greenland. The isotope composition of plant communities and functional...

  16. Synergism in the effect of prior jasmonic acid application on herbivore-induced volatile emission by Lima bean plants: transcription of a monoterpene synthase gene and volatile emission

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Menzel, T.R.; Weldegergis, B.T.; David, A.; Boland, W.; Gols, R.; Loon, van J.J.A.; Dicke, M.

    2014-01-01

    Jasmonic acid (JA) plays a central role in induced plant defence e.g. by regulating the biosynthesis of herbivore-induced plant volatiles that mediate the attraction of natural enemies of herbivores. Moreover, exogenous application of JA can be used to elicit plant defence responses similar to those

  17. Reciprocal diversification in a complex plant-herbivore-parasitoid food web

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bokma Folmer

    2007-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Plants, plant-feeding insects, and insect parasitoids form some of the most complex and species-rich food webs. According to the classic escape-and-radiate (EAR hypothesis, these hyperdiverse communities result from coevolutionary arms races consisting of successive cycles of enemy escape, radiation, and colonization by new enemy lineages. It has also been suggested that "enemy-free space" provided by novel host plants could promote host shifts by herbivores, and that parasitoids could similarly drive diversification of gall form in insects that induce galls on plants. Because these central coevolutionary hypotheses have never been tested in a phylogenetic framework, we combined phylogenetic information on willow-galling sawflies with data on their host plants, gall types, and enemy communities. Results We found that evolutionary shifts in host plant use and habitat have led to dramatic prunings of parasitoid communities, and that changes in gall phenotype can provide "enemy-free morphospace" for millions of years even in the absence of host plant shifts. Some parasites have nevertheless managed to colonize recently-evolved gall types, and this has apparently led to adaptive speciation in several enemy groups. However, having fewer enemies does not in itself increase speciation probabilities in individual sawfly lineages, partly because the high diversity of the enemy community facilitates compensatory attack by remaining parasite taxa. Conclusion Taken together, our results indicate that niche-dependent parasitism is a major force promoting ecological divergence in herbivorous insects, and that prey divergence can cause speciation in parasite lineages. However, the results also show that the EAR hypothesis is too simplistic for species-rich food webs: instead, diversification seems to be spurred by a continuous stepwise process, in which ecological and phenotypic shifts in prey lineages are followed by a lagged evolutionary

  18. Attractants in plant protein-based diets for the carnivorous largemouth bass Micropterus salmoides

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Oliveira Ana Maria Barretto de Menezes Sampaio de

    2004-01-01

    Full Text Available Adding attractants can improve acceptability of artificial diets by carnivorous fish fry and fingerlings, increasing intake of unpalatable feeds and improving growth rate, while reducing feeding time and feeding wastes. This study aimed to evaluate the effects of levels of inclusion of different attractants in plant protein-based diets on the performance of largemouth bass Micropterus salmoides. Nine hundred juvenile largemouth bass (26.54 ± 1.53 g conditioned to accept dry, artificial feed were stocked in 60, 90-L polyethylene tanks (15 fish per group in a completely randomized design trial (n=3. Fish were fed two daily meals ad libitum at 7h00 and 17h00, for 13 days, with a diet (100% plant protein source containing either soluble fish protein - SFP (0.5, 1.0, 1.5, 2.0, 2.5, and 3.0%; FisharonTM - FA (0.02, 0.04, 0.06, 0.08, 0.10, 0.12%; fish silage - FS (1.0, 2.0, 3.0, 4.0, 5.0, and 6.0%; a positive control diet - pCD (10% fish meal and a negative control diet - nCD (basal diet without attractants. DL-methionine (98% and L-lysine (80% were added automatically by the formulation software to adjust available amino-acid profile of diets. Recorded performance data were: final weight, feed intake, weight gain and feed conversion ratio. Fish fed diet FA0.02 presented the best growth rate, best weight gain and best feed conversion ratio. Fish fed diets containing FS as attractant presented the poorest performance.

  19. Traps of carnivorous pitcher plants as a habitat: composition of the fluid, biodiversity and mutualistic activities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adlassnig, Wolfram; Peroutka, Marianne; Lendl, Thomas

    2011-02-01

    Carnivorous pitcher plants (CPPs) use cone-shaped leaves to trap animals for nutrient supply but are not able to kill all intruders of their traps. Numerous species, ranging from bacteria to vertrebrates, survive and propagate in the otherwise deadly traps. This paper reviews the literature on phytotelmata of CPPs. Fluid as a Habitat The volumes of pitchers range from 0·2 mL to 1·5 L. In Nepenthes and Cephalotus, the fluid is secreted by the trap; the other genera collect rain water. The fluid is usually acidic, rich in O(2) and contains digestive enzymes. In some taxa, toxins or detergents are found, or the fluid is extremely viscous. In Heliamphora or Sarracenia, the fluid differs little from pure water. Diversity Pitcher inquilines comprise bacteria, protozoa, algae, fungi, rotifers, crustaceans, arachnids, insects and amphibia. The dominant groups are protists and Dipteran larvae. The various species of CPPs host different sets of inquilines. Sarracenia purpurea hosts up to 165 species of inquilines, followed by Nepenthes ampullaria with 59 species, compared with only three species from Brocchinia reducta. Reasons for these differences include size, the life span of the pitcher as well as its fluid. MUTUALISTIC: Activities Inquilines closely interact with their host. Some live as parasites, but the vast majority are mutualists. Beneficial activities include secretion of enzymes, feeding on the plant's prey and successive excretion of inorganic nutrients, mechanical break up of the prey, removal of excessive prey and assimilation of atmospheric N(2). There is strong evidence that CPPs influence their phytotelm. Two strategies can be distinguished: (1) Nepenthes and Cephalotus produce acidic, toxic or digestive fluids and host a limited diversity of inquilines. (2) Genera without efficient enzymes such as Sarracenia or Heliamphora host diverse organisms and depend to a large extent on their symbionts for prey utilization.

  20. Family matters: effect of host plant variation in chemical and mechanical defenses on a sequestering specialist herbivore.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dimarco, Romina D; Nice, Chris C; Fordyce, James A

    2012-11-01

    Insect herbivores contend with various plant traits that are presumed to function as feeding deterrents. Paradoxically, some specialist insect herbivores might benefit from some of these plant traits, for example by sequestering plant chemical defenses that herbivores then use as their own defense against natural enemies. Larvae of the butterfly species Battus philenor (L.) (Papilionidae) sequester toxic alkaloids (aristolochic acids) from their Aristolochia host plants, rendering larvae and adults unpalatable to a broad range of predators. We studied the importance of two putative defensive traits in Aristolochia erecta: leaf toughness and aristolochic acid content, and we examined the effect of intra- and interplant chemical variation on the chemical phenotype of B. philenor larvae. It has been proposed that genetic variation for sequestration ability is "invisible to natural selection" because intra- and interindividual variation in host-plant chemistry will largely eliminate a role for herbivore genetic variation in determining an herbivore's chemical phenotype. We found substantial intra- and interplant variation in leaf toughness and in the aristolochic acid chemistry in A. erecta. Based on field observations and laboratory experiments, we showed that first-instar larvae preferentially fed on less tough, younger leaves and avoided tougher, older leaves, and we found no evidence that aristolochic acid content influenced first-instar larval foraging. We found that the majority of variation in the amount of aristolochic acid sequestered by larvae was explained by larval family, not by host-plant aristolochic acid content. Heritable variation for sequestration is the predominant determinant of larval, and likely adult, chemical phenotype. This study shows that for these highly specialized herbivores that sequester chemical defenses, traits that offer mechanical resistance, such as leaf toughness, might be more important determinants of early-instar larval

  1. Herbivore Oral Secreted Bacteria Trigger Distinct Defense Responses in Preferred and Non-Preferred Host Plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Jie; Chung, Seung Ho; Peiffer, Michelle; Rosa, Cristina; Hoover, Kelli; Zeng, Rensen; Felton, Gary W

    2016-06-01

    Insect symbiotic bacteria affect host physiology and mediate plant-insect interactions, yet there are few clear examples of symbiotic bacteria regulating defense responses in different host plants. We hypothesized that plants would induce distinct defense responses to herbivore- associated bacteria. We evaluated whether preferred hosts (horsenettle) or non-preferred hosts (tomato) respond similarly to oral secretions (OS) from the false potato beetle (FPB, Leptinotarsa juncta), and whether the induced defense triggered by OS was due to the presence of symbiotic bacteria in OS. Both horsenettle and tomato damaged by antibiotic (AB) treated larvae showed higher polyphenol oxidase (PPO) activity than those damaged by non-AB treated larvae. In addition, application of OS from AB treated larvae induced higher PPO activity compared with OS from non-AB treated larvae or water treatment. False potato beetles harbor bacteria that may provide abundant cues that can be recognized by plants and thus mediate corresponding defense responses. Among all tested bacterial isolates, the genera Pantoea, Acinetobacter, Enterobacter, and Serratia were found to suppress PPO activity in tomato, while only Pantoea sp. among these four isolates was observed to suppress PPO activity in horsenettle. The distinct PPO suppression caused by symbiotic bacteria in different plants was similar to the pattern of induced defense-related gene expression. Pantoea inoculated FPB suppressed JA-responsive genes and triggered a SA-responsive gene in both tomato and horsenettle. However, Enterobacter inoculated FPB eliminated JA-regulated gene expression and elevated SA-regulated gene expression in tomato, but did not show evident effects on the expression levels of horsenettle defense-related genes. These results indicate that suppression of plant defenses by the bacteria found in the oral secretions of herbivores may be a more widespread phenomenon than previously indicated.

  2. Experience matters: prior exposure to plant toxins enhances diversity of gut microbes in herbivores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kohl, Kevin D; Dearing, M D

    2012-09-01

    For decades, ecologists have hypothesised that exposure to plant secondary compounds (PSCs) modifies herbivore-associated microbial community composition. This notion has not been critically evaluated in wild mammalian herbivores on evolutionary timescales. We investigated responses of the microbial communities of two woodrat species (Neotoma bryanti and N. lepida). For each species, we compared experienced populations that independently converged to feed on the same toxic plant (creosote bush, Larrea tridentata) to naïve populations with no exposure to creosote toxins. The addition of dietary PSCs significantly altered gut microbial community structure, and the response was dependent on previous experience. Microbial diversity and relative abundances of several dominant phyla increased in experienced woodrats in response to PSCs; however, opposite effects were observed in naïve woodrats. These differential responses were convergent in experienced populations of both species. We hypothesise that adaptation of the foregut microbiota to creosote PSCs in experienced woodrats drives this differential response. © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd/CNRS.

  3. Host plant invests in growth rather than chemical defense when attacked by a specialist herbivore.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arab, Alberto; Trigo, José Roberto

    2011-05-01

    Plant defensive compounds may be a cost rather than a benefit when plants are attacked by specialist insects that may overcome chemical barriers by strategies such as sequestering plant compounds. Plants may respond to specialist herbivores by compensatory growth rather than chemical defense. To explore the use of defensive chemistry vs. compensatory growth we studied Brugmansia suaveolens (Solanaceae) and the specialist larvae of the ithomiine butterfly Placidina euryanassa, which sequester defensive tropane alkaloids (TAs) from this host plant. We investigated whether the concentration of TAs in B. suaveolens was changed by P. euryanassa damage, and whether plants invest in growth, when damaged by the specialist. Larvae feeding during 24 hr significantly decreased TAs in damaged plants, but they returned to control levels after 15 days without damage. Damaged and undamaged plants did not differ significantly in leaf area after 15 days, indicating compensatory growth. Our results suggest that B. suaveolens responds to herbivory by the specialist P. euryanassa by investing in growth rather than chemical defense.

  4. Reconstructing a herbivore's diet using a novel rbcL DNA mini-barcode for plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erickson, David L; Reed, Elizabeth; Ramachandran, Padmini; Bourg, Norman A; McShea, William J; Ottesen, Andrea

    2017-05-01

    Next Generation Sequencing and the application of metagenomic analyses can be used to answer questions about animal diet choice and study the consequences of selective foraging by herbivores. The quantification of herbivore diet choice with respect to native versus exotic plant species is particularly relevant given concerns of invasive species establishment and their effects on ecosystems. While increased abundance of white-tailed deer ( Odocoileus virginianus ) appears to correlate with increased incidence of invasive plant species, data supporting a causal link is scarce. We used a metabarcoding approach (PCR amplicons of the plant rbc L gene) to survey the diet of white-tailed deer (fecal samples), from a forested site in Warren County, Virginia with a comprehensive plant species inventory and corresponding reference collection of plant barcode and chloroplast sequences. We sampled fecal pellet piles and extracted DNA from 12 individual deer in October 2014. These samples were compared to a reference DNA library of plant species collected within the study area. For 72 % of the amplicons, we were able to assign taxonomy at the species level, which provides for the first time-sufficient taxonomic resolution to quantify the relative frequency at which native and exotic plant species are being consumed by white-tailed deer. For each of the 12 individual deer we collected three subsamples from the same fecal sample, resulting in sequencing 36 total samples. Using Qiime, we quantified the plant DNA found in all 36 samples, and found that variance within samples was less than variance between samples ( F  = 1.73, P  = 0.004), indicating additional subsamples may not be necessary. Species level diversity ranged from 60 to 93 OTUs per individual and nearly 70 % of all plant sequences recovered were from native plant species. The number of species detected did reduce significantly (range 4-12) when we excluded species whose OTU composed plants inventoried

  5. A genetically-based latitudinal cline in the emission of herbivore-induced plant volatile organic compounds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wason, Elizabeth L; Agrawal, Anurag A; Hunter, Mark D

    2013-08-01

    The existence of predictable latitudinal variation in plant defense against herbivores remains controversial. A prevailing view holds that higher levels of plant defense evolve at low latitudes compared to high latitudes as an adaptive plant response to higher herbivore pressure on low-latitude plants. To date, this prediction has not been examined with respect to volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that many plants emit, often thus attracting the natural enemies of herbivores. Here, we compared genetically-based constitutive and herbivore-induced aboveground vegetative VOC emissions from plants originating across a gradient of more than 10° of latitude (>1,500 km). We collected headspace VOCs from Asclepias syriaca (common milkweed) originating from 20 populations across its natural range and grown in a common garden near the range center. Feeding by specialist Danaus plexippus (monarch) larvae induced VOCs, and field environmental conditions (temperature, light, and humidity) also influenced emissions. Monarch damage increased plant VOC concentrations and altered VOC blends. We found that genetically-based induced VOC emissions varied with the latitude of plant population origin, although the pattern followed the reverse of that predicted-induced VOC concentration increased with increasing latitude. This pattern appeared to be driven by a greater induction of sesquiterpenoids at higher latitudes. In contrast, constitutive VOC emission did not vary systematically with latitude, and the induction of green leafy volatiles declined with latitude. Our results do not support the prevailing view that plant defense is greater at lower than at higher latitudes. That the pattern holds only for herbivore-induced VOC emission, and not constitutive emission, suggests that latitudinal variation in VOCs is not a simple adaptive response to climatic factors.

  6. Looking for a similar partner: host plants shape mating preferences of herbivorous insects by altering their contact pheromones.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geiselhardt, Sven; Otte, Tobias; Hilker, Monika

    2012-09-01

    The role of phenotypical plasticity in ecological speciation and the evolution of sexual isolation remains largely unknown. We investigated whether or not divergent host plant use in an herbivorous insect causes assortative mating by phenotypically altering traits involved in mate recognition. We found that males of the mustard leaf beetle Phaedon cochleariae preferred to mate with females that were reared on the same plant species to females provided with a different plant species, based on divergent cuticular hydrocarbon profiles that serve as contact pheromones. The cuticular hydrocarbon phenotypes of the beetles were host plant specific and changed within 2 weeks after a shift to a novel host plant species. We suggest that plant-induced phenotypic divergence in mate recognition cues may act as an early barrier to gene flow between herbivorous insect populations on alternative host species, preceding genetic divergence and thus, promoting ecological speciation. © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd/CNRS.

  7. Phytoseiulus persimilis response to herbivore-induced plant volatiles as a function of mite-days.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nachappa, Punya; Margolies, David C; Nechols, James R; Loughin, Thomas

    2006-01-01

    The predatory mite, Phytoseiulus persimilis (Acari: Phytoseiidae), uses plant volatiles (i.e., airborne chemicals) triggered by feeding of their herbivorous prey, Tetranychus urticae (Acari: Tetranychidae), to help locate prey patches. The olfactory response of P. persimilis to prey-infested plants varies in direct relation to the population growth pattern of T. urticae on the plant; P. persimilis responds to plants until the spider mite population feeding on a plant collapses, after which infested plants do not attract predators. It has been suggested that this represents an early enemy-free period for T. urticae before the next generation of females is produced. We hypothesize that the mechanism behind the diminished response of predators is due to extensive leaf damage caused by T. urticae feeding, which reduces the production of volatiles irrespective of the collapse of T. urticae population on the plant. To test this hypothesis we investigated how the response of P. persimilis to prey-infested plants is affected by: 1) initial density of T. urticae, 2) duration of infestation, and 3) corresponding leaf damage due to T. urticae feeding. Specifically, we assessed the response of P. persimilis to plants infested with two T. urticae densities (20 or 40 per plant) after 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, 12 or 14 days. We also measured leaf damage on these plants. We found that predator response to T. urticae-infested plants can be quantified as a function of mite-days, which is a cumulative measure of the standing adult female mite population sampled and summed over time. That is, response to volatiles increased with increasing numbers of T. urticae per plant or with the length of time plant was infested by T. urticae, at least as long at the leaves were green. Predatory mites were significantly attracted to plants that were infested for 2 days with only 20 spider mites. This suggests that the enemy-free period might only provide a limited window of opportunity for T. urticae

  8. Ozone exposure triggers the emission of herbivore-induced plant volatiles, but does not disturb tritrophic signalling

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Vuorinen, Terhi; Nerg, Anne-Marja; Holopainen, Jarmo K

    2004-09-01

    We evaluated the similarities between ozone-induced and mite-induced emission of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) from lima beans, and tested the response of the natural enemies of herbivores to these emissions using trophic system of two-spotted spider mites and predatory mites. The acute ozone-exposure and spider mite-infestation induced the emission of two homoterpenes, (E)-4,8-dimethyl-1,3,7-nonatriene and (E,E)-4,8,12-trimethyl-1,3,7,11-tridecatetraene, and (Z)-3-hexenyl acetate. Only plants with spider mite-infestation emitted the monoterpene (E)-{beta}-ocimene. Predatory mites were equally attracted to ozone-exposed and unexposed plants, but discriminated between spider mite-infested and uninfested plants, when both were exposed to ozone. The similarities between ozone and herbivore-induced VOCs suggest that plant defence against phytotoxic ozone and the production of VOCs for attraction of the natural enemies of herbivores may have adaptive coevolution. However, the expected elevated ozone concentrations in future may not disturb tritrophic signalling, unless herbivore-induced VOCs are lost in the process of aerosol formation.

  9. Innate responses of the parasitoids Cotesia glomerata and C. rubecula (Hymenoptera: Braconidae) to volatiles from different plant-herbivore complexes.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Geervliet, J.B.F.; Vet, L.E.M.; Dicke, M.

    1996-01-01

    To determine and compare innate preferences of the parasitoid species Cotesia glomerata and C. rubecula for different plant-herbivore complexes, long-range (1-m) foraging behavior was studied in dual-choice experiments in a wind tunnel. In this study we tested the hypothesis that naive females of

  10. ß-Glucosidase: an elicitor of herbivore-induced plant odor that attracts host-searching parasitic wasps.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mattiacci, L.; Dicke, M.; Posthumus, M.A.

    1995-01-01

    Cabbage plants respond to caterpillar (Pieris brassicae) herbivory by releasing a mixture of volatiles that makes them highly attractive to parasitic wasps (Cotesia glomerata) that attack the herbivores. Cabbage leaves that are artificially damaged and subsequently treated with gut regurgitant of P.

  11. Ozone exposure triggers the emission of herbivore-induced plant volatiles, but does not disturb tritrophic signalling

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vuorinen, Terhi; Nerg, Anne-Marja; Holopainen, Jarmo K.

    2004-01-01

    We evaluated the similarities between ozone-induced and mite-induced emission of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) from lima beans, and tested the response of the natural enemies of herbivores to these emissions using trophic system of two-spotted spider mites and predatory mites. The acute ozone-exposure and spider mite-infestation induced the emission of two homoterpenes, (E)-4,8-dimethyl-1,3,7-nonatriene and (E,E)-4,8,12-trimethyl-1,3,7,11-tridecatetraene, and (Z)-3-hexenyl acetate. Only plants with spider mite-infestation emitted the monoterpene (E)-β-ocimene. Predatory mites were equally attracted to ozone-exposed and unexposed plants, but discriminated between spider mite-infested and uninfested plants, when both were exposed to ozone. The similarities between ozone and herbivore-induced VOCs suggest that plant defence against phytotoxic ozone and the production of VOCs for attraction of the natural enemies of herbivores may have adaptive coevolution. However, the expected elevated ozone concentrations in future may not disturb tritrophic signalling, unless herbivore-induced VOCs are lost in the process of aerosol formation

  12. Defoliation and Soil Compaction Jointly Drive Large-Herbivore Grazing Effects on Plants and Soil Arthropods on Clay Soil

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Klink, R.; Schrama, M.; Nolte, S.; Bakker, J. P.; WallisDeVries, M. F.; Berg, M. P.

    In addition to the well-studied impacts of defecation and defoliation, large herbivores also affect plant and arthropod communities through trampling, and the associated soil compaction. Soil compaction can be expected to be particularly important on wet, fine-textured soils. Therefore, we

  13. Defoliation and Soil Compaction Jointly Drive Large-Herbivore Grazing Effects on Plants and Soil Arthropods on Clay Soil

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Klink, R.; Schrama, M.; Nolte, S.; Bakker, Jan P.; WallisDeVries, M.F.; Berg, M.P.

    2015-01-01

    In addition to the well-studied impacts of defecation and defoliation, large herbivores also affect plant and arthropod communities through trampling, and the associated soil compaction. Soil compaction can be expected to be particularly important on wet, fine-textured soils. Therefore, we

  14. First-Year Vitality of Reforestation Plantings in Response to Herbivore Exclusion on Reclaimed Appalachian Surface-Mined Land

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zachary J. Hackworth

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Conventional Appalachian surface-mine reclamation techniques repress natural forest regeneration, and tree plantings are often necessary for reforestation. Reclaimed Appalachian surface mines harbor a suite of mammal herbivores that forage on recently planted seedlings. Anecdotal reports across Appalachia have implicated herbivory in the hindrance and failure of reforestation efforts, yet empirical evaluation of herbivory impacts on planted seedling vitality in this region remains relatively uninitiated. First growing-season survival, height growth, and mammal herbivory damage of black locust (Robinia pseudoacacia L., shortleaf pine (Pinus echinata Mill., and white oak (Quercus alba L. are presented in response to varying intensities of herbivore exclusion. Seedling survival was generally high, and height growth was positive for all species. The highest herbivory incidence of all tree species was observed in treatments offering no herbivore exclusion. While seedling protectors lowered herbivory incidence compared with no exclusion, full exclusion treatments resulted in the greatest reduction of herbivore damage. Although herbivory from rabbits, small mammals, and domestic animals was observed, cervids (deer and elk were responsible for 95.8% of all damaged seedlings. This study indicates that cervids forage heavily on planted seedlings during the first growing-season, but exclusion is effective at reducing herbivory.

  15. Interaction intimacy of pathogens and herbivores with their host plants influences the topological structure of ecological networks in different ways.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benítez-Malvido, Julieta; Dáttilo, Wesley

    2015-04-01

    • Over the past two decades an interest in the role that plant-animal mutualistic networks play in the organization and dynamic of biodiversity has steadily risen. Despite the ecological, evolutionary, and economic importance of plant-herbivore and plant-pathogen antagonistic relationships, however, few studies have examined these interactions in an ecological network framework.• We describe for the first time the topological structure of multitrophic networks involving congeneric tropical plant species of the genus Heliconia (Heliconiaceae, Zingiberales) and their herbivores and pathogens in the state of Pernambuco, Brazil. We based our study on the available literature describing the organisms (e.g., insects, mites, fungi, and bacteria) that attack 24 different species, hybrids, and cultivated varieties of Heliconia.• In general, pathogen- and herbivore-Heliconia networks differed in their topological structure (more modular vs. more nested, respectively): pathogen-Heliconia networks were more specialized and compartmentalized than herbivore-Heliconia networks. High modularity was likely due to the high intimacy that pathogens have with their host plants as compared with the more generalized feeding modes and behavior of herbivores. Some clusters clearly reflected the clustering of closely related cultivated varieties of Heliconia sharing the same pathogens.• From a commercial standpoint, different varieties of the same Heliconia species may be more susceptible to being attacked by the same species of pathogens. In summary, our study highlights the importance of interaction intimacy in structuring trophic relationships between plants and pathogens in the tropics. © 2015 Botanical Society of America, Inc.

  16. Neimark-Sacker Bifurcation and Chaos Control in a Fractional-Order Plant-Herbivore Model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Qamar Din

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available This work is related to dynamics of a discrete-time 3-dimensional plant-herbivore model. We investigate existence and uniqueness of positive equilibrium and parametric conditions for local asymptotic stability of positive equilibrium point of this model. Moreover, it is also proved that the system undergoes Neimark-Sacker bifurcation for positive equilibrium with the help of an explicit criterion for Neimark-Sacker bifurcation. The chaos control in the model is discussed through implementation of two feedback control strategies, that is, pole-placement technique and hybrid control methodology. Finally, numerical simulations are provided to illustrate theoretical results. These results of numerical simulations demonstrate chaotic long-term behavior over a broad range of parameters. The computation of the maximum Lyapunov exponents confirms the presence of chaotic behavior in the model.

  17. In vitro anti-inflammatory components isolated from the carnivorous plant Nepenthes mirabilis (Lour.) Rafarin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thao, Nguyen Phuong; Luyen, Bui Thi Thuy; Koo, Jung Eun; Kim, Sohyun; Koh, Young Sang; Thanh, Nguyen Van; Cuong, Nguyen Xuan; Kiem, Phan Van; Minh, Chau Van; Kim, Young Ho

    2016-01-01

    Nepenthes mirabilis (Lour.) Rafarin (Nepenthaceae) is a carnivorous plant used as a folk medicine in the treatment of jaundice, hepatitis, gastric ulcers, ureteral stones, diarrhea, diabetes, and high blood pressure. Neither the phytochemical content nor biological activities of N. mirabilis have been reported. The anti-inflammatory activity from the N. mirabilis methanolic extract led to the isolation of compounds (1-26). Chromatographic methods were used to isolate compounds from the methanol extract of N. mirabilis branches and leaves. The anti-inflammatory activity of these isolated compounds was investigated in lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-stimulated bone marrow-derived dendritic cells (BMDCs) using ELISA. Primary BMDCs were used to examine the production of pro-inflammatory cytokines (IL-12 p40, IL-6, and TNF-α, at concentrations of 0.1, 0.2, and 1.0 μM) as compared with a positive control, SB203580 (1.0 μM). MTT assays showed that isolated compounds (1-26) did not exhibit significant cytotoxicity at concentrations up to 20.0 μM. Compound 9 showed potent inhibition of IL-12 p40, IL-6, and TNF-α production (IC50 = 0.17 ± 0.02, 0.46 ± 0.01, and 8.28 ± 0.21 μM, respectively). Compound 4 showed potent inhibition of IL-12 p40 and IL-6 production (IC50 = 1.17 ± 0.01 and 2.15 ± 0.04 μM). In addition, IL-12 p40 inhibition by naphthalene derivatives (1-7, 9, and 10), phenolic compounds (11-15), lupeone (18), and flavonoids (22, 25, and 26) was more potent than with the positive control. The isolated compounds exhibited little and/or no inhibitory effects on TNF-α production in LPS-stimulated BMDCs. Taken together, these data suggest that the isolated components have significant inhibitory effects on pro-inflammatory cytokine production and warrant further study concerning their potential medicinal use.

  18. Innate responses of the predatory mite Phytoseiulus persimilis to a herbivore-induced plant volatile.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sznajder, B; Sabelis, M W; Egas, M

    2011-06-01

    The responses of the predatory mite P. persimilis to herbivore-induced plant volatiles are at least partly genetically determined. Thus, there is potential for the evolution of this behaviour by natural selection. We tested whether distinct predator genotypes with contrasting responses to a specific herbivore-induced plant volatile, i.e. methyl salicylate (MeSa), could be found in a base population collected in the field (Sicily). To this end, we imposed purifying selection on individuals within iso-female lines of P. persimilis such that the lines were propagated only via the individual that showed either a preference or avoidance of MeSa. The responses of the lines were characterized as the mean proportion of individuals choosing MeSa when given a choice between MeSa and clean air. Significant variation in predator responses was detected among iso-female lines, thus confirming the presence of a genetic component for this behaviour. Nevertheless, we did not find a significant difference in the response to MeSa between the lines that were selected to avoid MeSa and the lines selected to prefer MeSa. Instead, in the course of selection the lines selected to avoid MeSa shifted their mean response towards a preference for MeSa. An inverse, albeit weaker, shift was detected for the lines selected to prefer MeSa. We discuss the factors that may have caused the apparent lack of a response to selection within iso-female line in this study and propose experimental approaches that address them.

  19. Overcompensation of herbivore reproduction through hyper-suppression of plant defenses in response to competition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schimmel, Bernardus C J; Ataide, Livia M S; Chafi, Rachid; Villarroel, Carlos A; Alba, Juan M; Schuurink, Robert C; Kant, Merijn R

    2017-06-01

    Spider mites are destructive arthropod pests on many crops. The generalist herbivorous mite Tetranychus urticae induces defenses in tomato (Solanum lycopersicum) and this constrains its fitness. By contrast, the Solanaceae-specialist Tetranychus evansi maintains a high reproductive performance by suppressing tomato defenses. Tetranychus evansi outcompetes T. urticae when infesting the same plant, but it is unknown whether this is facilitated by the defenses of the plant. We assessed the extent to which a secondary infestation by a competitor affects local plant defense responses (phytohormones and defense genes), mite gene expression and mite performance. We observed that T. evansi switches to hyper-suppression of defenses after its tomato host is also invaded by its natural competitor T. urticae. Jasmonate (JA) and salicylate (SA) defenses were suppressed more strongly, albeit only locally at the feeding site of T. evansi, upon introduction of T. urticae to the infested leaflet. The hyper-suppression of defenses coincided with increased expression of T. evansi genes coding for salivary defense-suppressing effector proteins and was paralleled by an increased reproductive performance. Together, these observations suggest that T. evansi overcompensates its reproduction through hyper-suppression of plant defenses in response to nearby competitors. We hypothesize that the competitor-induced overcompensation promotes competitive population growth of T. evansi on tomato. © 2017 The Authors. New Phytologist © 2017 New Phytologist Trust.

  20. [Effects of plant viruses on vector and non-vector herbivorous arthropods and their natural enemies: a mini review].

    Science.gov (United States)

    He, Xiao-Chan; Xu, Hong-Xing; Zhou, Xiao-Jun; Zheng, Xu-Song; Sun, Yu-Jian; Yang, Ya-Jun; Tian, Jun-Ce; Lü, Zhong-Xian

    2014-05-01

    Plant viruses transmitted by arthropods, as an important biotic factor, may not only directly affect the yield and quality of host plants, and development, physiological characteristics and ecological performances of their vector arthropods, but also directly or indirectly affect the non-vector herbivorous arthropods and their natural enemies in the same ecosystem, thereby causing influences to the whole agro-ecosystem. This paper reviewed the progress on the effects of plant viruses on herbivorous arthropods, including vector and non-vector, and their natural enemies, and on their ecological mechanisms to provide a reference for optimizing the management of vector and non-vector arthropod populations and sustainable control of plant viruses in agro-ecosystem.

  1. Parasitic Wasps Can Reduce Mortality of Teosinte Plants Infested With Fall Armyworm: Support for a Defensive Function of Herbivore-Induced Plant Volatiles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elvira S. de Lange

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available Many parasitic wasps use volatiles emitted by plants under herbivore attack to find their hosts. It has therefore been proposed that these inducible plant volatiles serve an indirect defense function by recruiting parasitoids and other natural enemies. This suggested function remains controversial because there is little evidence that, in terms of fitness, plants benefit from the actions of natural enemies, particularly parasitoids, which do not immediately kill their hosts. We aimed to address this controversy in a semi-natural field experiment in Mexico, where we used large screen tents to evaluate how parasitoids can affect plant performance. The tritrophic study system comprised teosinte (Zea spp., the ancestor of maize, Spodoptera frugiperda Smith (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae and Campoletis sonorensis Cameron (Hymenoptera: Ichneumonidae, which have a long evolutionary history together. In tents without parasitoids, S. frugiperda larvae inflicted severe damage to the plants, whereas in the presence of parasitoid wasps, leaf damage was reduced by as much as 80%. Parasitoids also mitigated herbivore-mediated mortality among young teosinte plants. Although these findings will not resolve the long-standing debate on the adaptive function of herbivore-induced plant volatiles (HIPVs, they do present strong support for the hypothesis that plants can benefit from the presence of parasitoid natural enemies of their herbivores.

  2. The Active Jasmonate JA-Ile Regulates a Specific Subset of Plant Jasmonate-Mediated Resistance to Herbivores in Nature

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Meredith C. Schuman

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available The jasmonate hormones are essential regulators of plant defense against herbivores and include several dozen derivatives of the oxylipin jasmonic acid (JA. Among these, the conjugate jasmonoyl isoleucine (JA-Ile has been shown to interact directly with the jasmonate co-receptor complex to regulate responses to jasmonate signaling. However, functional studies indicate that some aspects of jasmonate-mediated defense are not regulated by JA-Ile. Thus, it is not clear whether JA-Ile is best characterized as the master jasmonate regulator of defense, or if it regulates more specific aspects. We investigated possible functions of JA-Ile in anti-herbivore resistance of the wild tobacco Nicotiana attenuata, a model system for plant-herbivore interactions. We first analyzed the soluble and volatile secondary metabolomes of irJAR4xirJAR6, asLOX3, and WT plants, as well as an RNAi line targeting the jasmonate co-receptor CORONATINE INSENSITIVE 1 (irCOI1, following a standardized herbivory treatment. irJAR4xirJAR6 were the most similar to WT plants, having a ca. 60% overlap in differentially regulated metabolites with either asLOX3 or irCOI1. In contrast, while at least 25 volatiles differed between irCOI1 or asLOX3 and WT plants, there were few or no differences in herbivore-induced volatile emission between irJAR4xirJAR6 and WT plants, in glasshouse- or field-collected samples. We then measured the susceptibility of jasmonate-deficient vs. JA-Ile-deficient plants in nature, in comparison to wild-type (WT controls, and found that JA-Ile-deficient plants (irJAR4xirJAR6 are much better defended even than a mildly jasmonate-deficient line (asLOX3. The differences among lines could be attributed to differences in damage from specific herbivores, which appeared to prefer either one or the other jasmonate-deficient phenotype. We further investigated the elicitation of one herbivore-induced volatile known to be jasmonate-regulated and to mediate resistance to

  3. The European Hare (Lepus europaeus: A Picky Herbivore Searching for Plant Parts Rich in Fat.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stéphanie C Schai-Braun

    Full Text Available European hares of both sexes rely on fat reserves, particularly during the reproduc-tive season. Therefore, hares should select dietary plants rich in fat and energy. However, hares also require essential polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA such as linoleic acid (LA and alpha-linolenic acid (ALA to reproduce and survive. Although hares are able to absorb PUFA selectively in their gastrointestinal tract, it is unknown whether this mechanism is sufficient to guarantee PUFA supply. Thus, diet selection may involve a trade-off between a preference for energy versus a preference for crucial nutrients, namely PUFA. We compared plant and nutrient availability and use by hares in an arable landscape in Austria over three years. We found that European hares selected their diet for high energy content (crude fat and crude protein, and avoided crude fibre. There was no evidence of a preference for plants rich in LA and ALA. We conclude that fat is the limiting resource for this herbivorous mammal, whereas levels of LA and ALA in forage are sufficiently high to meet daily requirements, especially since their uptake is enhanced by physiological mechanisms. Animals selected several plant taxa all year round, and preferences did not simply correlate with crude fat content. Hence, European hares might not only select for plant taxa rich in fat, but also for high-fat parts of preferred plant taxa. As hares preferred weeds/grasses and various crop types while avoiding cereals, we suggest that promoting heterogeneous habitats with high crop diversity and set-asides may help stop the decline of European hares throughout Europe.

  4. Variation in plant defense against invasive herbivores: evidence for a hypersensitive response in eastern hemlocks (Tsuga canadensis).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Radville, Laura; Chaves, Arielle; Preisser, Evan L

    2011-06-01

    Herbivores can trigger a wide array of morphological and chemical changes in their host plants. Feeding by some insects induces a defensive hypersensitive response, a defense mechanism consisting of elevated H(2)O(2) levels and tissue death at the site of herbivore feeding. The invasive hemlock woolly adelgid Adelges tsugae ('HWA') and elongate hemlock scale Fiorinia externa ('EHS') feed on eastern hemlocks; although both are sessile sap feeders, HWA causes more damage than EHS. The rapid rate of tree death following HWA infestation has led to the suggestion that feeding induces a hypersensitive response in hemlock trees. We assessed the potential for an herbivore-induced hypersensitive response in eastern hemlocks by measuring H(2)O(2) levels in foliage from HWA-infested, EHS-infested, and uninfested trees. Needles with settled HWA or EHS had higher H(2)O(2) levels than control needles, suggesting a localized hypersensitive plant response. Needles with no direct contact to settled HWA also had high H(2)O(2) levels, suggesting that HWA infestation may induce a systemic defense response in eastern hemlocks. There was no similar systemic defensive response in the EHS treatment. Our results showed that two herbivores in the same feeding guild had dramatically different outcomes on the health of their shared host.

  5. OsMPK3 positively regulates the JA signaling pathway and plant resistance to a chewing herbivore in rice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Qi; Li, Jiancai; Hu, Lingfei; Zhang, Tongfang; Zhang, Guren; Lou, Yonggen

    2013-07-01

    KEY MESSAGE : Silencing OsMPK3 decreased elicited JA levels, which subsequently reduced levels of herbivore-induced trypsin protease inhibitors (TrypPIs) and improved the performance of SSB larvae, but did not influence BPH. Mitogen-activated protein kinases (MPKs) are known to play an important role in plant defense by transferring biotic and abiotic signals into programmed cellular responses. However, their functions in the herbivore-induced defense response in rice remain largely unknown. Here, we identified a MPK3 gene from rice, OsMPK3, and found that its expression levels were up-regulated in response to infestation by the larvae of the striped stem borer (SSB) (Chilo suppressalis), to mechanical wounding and to treatment with jasmonic acid (JA), but not to infestation by the brown planthopper (BPH) Nilaparvata lugens or to treatment with salicylic acid. Moreover, mechanical wounding and SSB infestation induced the expression of OsMPK3 strongly and quickly, whereas JA treatment induced the gene more weakly and slowly. Silencing OsMPK3 (ir-mpk3) reduced the expression of the gene by 50-70 %, decreased elicited levels of JA and diminished the expression of a lipoxygenase gene OsHI-LOX and an allene oxide synthase gene OsAOS1. The reduced JA signaling in ir-mpk3 plants decreased the levels of herbivore-induced trypsin protease inhibitors (TrypPIs) and improved the performance of SSB larvae, but did not influence BPH. Our findings suggest that the gene OsMPK3 responds early in herbivore-induced defense and can be regulated by rice plants to activate a specific and appropriate defense response to different herbivores.

  6. Plant-herbivore interactions along elevational gradient: Comparison of field and common garden data

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Rokaya, Maan Bahadur; Dostálek, T.; Münzbergová, Z.

    2016-01-01

    Roč. 77, nov (2016), s. 168-175 ISSN 1146-609X Institutional support: RVO:67179843 Keywords : Anti-herbivore defence * Altitude * Herbivore damage * Himalayan region * Lamiaceae Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 1.652, year: 2016

  7. Gamma irradiation on canola seeds affects herbivore-plant and host-parasitoid interactions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Akandeh, M.; Kocheili, F.; Rasekh, A.; Soufbaf, M.

    2017-01-01

    As an agricultural modernization, gamma irradiation is an important method for enhancing crop yield and quality. Nevertheless, its use can alter other plant traits such as nutrition and resistance to different biotic/abiotic stresses that consequently affect plant-insect interactions. A tritrophic system was utilized based on two canola mutant lines produced through gamma irradiation (RGS 8-1 and Talaye 8-3). Plutella xylostella (L.), as a worldwide pest of Brassicaceae and Cotesia vestalis (Holiday) as a key biocontrol agent of P. xylostella were examined for the potential indirect effects of canola seed irradiation on the experimental insects' performance when acting on the respective mutant lines. This study showed that physical mutation did not affect plant nitrogen and herbivore-damaged total phenolics; however, phenolic compounds showed greater concentration in damaged leaves than undamaged leaves of both mutant and control plants. The relative growth rate and pupal weight of P. xylostella reared on RGS 8-1 were significantly higher than those reared on the control RGS. There was no significant difference by performance parameters of the parasitoid, C. vestalis, including total pre-oviposition period, adult longevity, adult fresh body weight of males and females, pupal weight, forewing area, and total longevity of both sexes on tested canola cultivars in comparison with their mutant lines. Life table parameters of C. vestalis on mutant lines of both cultivars, RGS and Talaye, were not significantly different from their control treatments. Comprehensive studies should be conducted to find out the mechanisms under which gamma rays affect plant-insect interactions. (author)

  8. Gamma irradiation on canola seeds affects herbivore-plant and host-parasitoid interactions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Akandeh, M.; Kocheili, F.; Rasekh, A. [Dept. of Entomology, Shahid Chamran Univ of Ahvaz (Iran, Islamic Republic of); Soufbaf, M., E-mail: msoufbaf@nrcam.org [Agricultural, Medical and Industrial Research School, Karaj (Iran, Islamic Republic of)

    2017-06-15

    As an agricultural modernization, gamma irradiation is an important method for enhancing crop yield and quality. Nevertheless, its use can alter other plant traits such as nutrition and resistance to different biotic/abiotic stresses that consequently affect plant-insect interactions. A tritrophic system was utilized based on two canola mutant lines produced through gamma irradiation (RGS 8-1 and Talaye 8-3). Plutella xylostella (L.), as a worldwide pest of Brassicaceae and Cotesia vestalis (Holiday) as a key biocontrol agent of P. xylostella were examined for the potential indirect effects of canola seed irradiation on the experimental insects' performance when acting on the respective mutant lines. This study showed that physical mutation did not affect plant nitrogen and herbivore-damaged total phenolics; however, phenolic compounds showed greater concentration in damaged leaves than undamaged leaves of both mutant and control plants. The relative growth rate and pupal weight of P. xylostella reared on RGS 8-1 were significantly higher than those reared on the control RGS. There was no significant difference by performance parameters of the parasitoid, C. vestalis, including total pre-oviposition period, adult longevity, adult fresh body weight of males and females, pupal weight, forewing area, and total longevity of both sexes on tested canola cultivars in comparison with their mutant lines. Life table parameters of C. vestalis on mutant lines of both cultivars, RGS and Talaye, were not significantly different from their control treatments. Comprehensive studies should be conducted to find out the mechanisms under which gamma rays affect plant-insect interactions. (author)

  9. Experimental Manipulation of Grassland Plant Diversity Induces Complex Shifts in Aboveground Arthropod Diversity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hertzog, Lionel R.; Meyer, Sebastian T.; Weisser, Wolfgang W.; Ebeling, Anne

    2016-01-01

    Changes in producer diversity cause multiple changes in consumer communities through various mechanisms. However, past analyses investigating the relationship between plant diversity and arthropod consumers focused only on few aspects of arthropod diversity, e.g. species richness and abundance. Yet, shifts in understudied facets of arthropod diversity like relative abundances or species dominance may have strong effects on arthropod-mediated ecosystem functions. Here we analyze the relationship between plant species richness and arthropod diversity using four complementary diversity indices, namely: abundance, species richness, evenness (equitability of the abundance distribution) and dominance (relative abundance of the dominant species). Along an experimental gradient of plant species richness (1, 2, 4, 8, 16 and 60 plant species), we sampled herbivorous and carnivorous arthropods using pitfall traps and suction sampling during a whole vegetation period. We tested whether plant species richness affects consumer diversity directly (i), or indirectly through increased productivity (ii). Further, we tested the impact of plant community composition on arthropod diversity by testing for the effects of plant functional groups (iii). Abundance and species richness of both herbivores and carnivores increased with increasing plant species richness, but the underlying mechanisms differed between the two trophic groups. While higher species richness in herbivores was caused by an increase in resource diversity, carnivore richness was driven by plant productivity. Evenness of herbivore communities did not change along the gradient in plant species richness, whereas evenness of carnivores declined. The abundance of dominant herbivore species showed no response to changes in plant species richness, but the dominant carnivores were more abundant in species-rich plant communities. The functional composition of plant communities had small impacts on herbivore communities, whereas

  10. Experimental Manipulation of Grassland Plant Diversity Induces Complex Shifts in Aboveground Arthropod Diversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hertzog, Lionel R; Meyer, Sebastian T; Weisser, Wolfgang W; Ebeling, Anne

    2016-01-01

    Changes in producer diversity cause multiple changes in consumer communities through various mechanisms. However, past analyses investigating the relationship between plant diversity and arthropod consumers focused only on few aspects of arthropod diversity, e.g. species richness and abundance. Yet, shifts in understudied facets of arthropod diversity like relative abundances or species dominance may have strong effects on arthropod-mediated ecosystem functions. Here we analyze the relationship between plant species richness and arthropod diversity using four complementary diversity indices, namely: abundance, species richness, evenness (equitability of the abundance distribution) and dominance (relative abundance of the dominant species). Along an experimental gradient of plant species richness (1, 2, 4, 8, 16 and 60 plant species), we sampled herbivorous and carnivorous arthropods using pitfall traps and suction sampling during a whole vegetation period. We tested whether plant species richness affects consumer diversity directly (i), or indirectly through increased productivity (ii). Further, we tested the impact of plant community composition on arthropod diversity by testing for the effects of plant functional groups (iii). Abundance and species richness of both herbivores and carnivores increased with increasing plant species richness, but the underlying mechanisms differed between the two trophic groups. While higher species richness in herbivores was caused by an increase in resource diversity, carnivore richness was driven by plant productivity. Evenness of herbivore communities did not change along the gradient in plant species richness, whereas evenness of carnivores declined. The abundance of dominant herbivore species showed no response to changes in plant species richness, but the dominant carnivores were more abundant in species-rich plant communities. The functional composition of plant communities had small impacts on herbivore communities, whereas

  11. Diversity patterns amongst herbivorous dinosaurs and plants during the Cretaceous: implications for hypotheses of dinosaur/angiosperm co-evolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Butler, R J; Barrett, P M; Kenrick, P; Penn, M G

    2009-03-01

    Palaeobiologists frequently attempt to identify examples of co-evolutionary interactions over extended geological timescales. These hypotheses are often intuitively appealing, as co-evolution is so prevalent in extant ecosystems, and are easy to formulate; however, they are much more difficult to test than their modern analogues. Among the more intriguing deep time co-evolutionary scenarios are those that relate changes in Cretaceous dinosaur faunas to the primary radiation of flowering plants. Demonstration of temporal congruence between the diversifications of co-evolving groups is necessary to establish whether co-evolution could have occurred in such cases, but is insufficient to prove whether it actually did take place. Diversity patterns do, however, provide a means for falsifying such hypotheses. We have compiled a new database of Cretaceous dinosaur and plant distributions from information in the primary literature. This is used as the basis for plotting taxonomic diversity and occurrence curves for herbivorous dinosaurs (Sauropodomorpha, Stegosauria, Ankylosauria, Ornithopoda, Ceratopsia, Pachycephalosauria and herbivorous theropods) and major groups of plants (angiosperms, Bennettitales, cycads, cycadophytes, conifers, Filicales and Ginkgoales) that co-occur in dinosaur-bearing formations. Pairwise statistical comparisons were made between various floral and faunal groups to test for any significant similarities in the shapes of their diversity curves through time. We show that, with one possible exception, diversity patterns for major groups of herbivorous dinosaurs are not positively correlated with angiosperm diversity. In other words, at the level of major clades, there is no support for any diffuse co-evolutionary relationship between herbivorous dinosaurs and flowering plants. The diversification of Late Cretaceous pachycephalosaurs (excluding the problematic taxon Stenopelix) shows a positive correlation, but this might be spuriously related to

  12. Interactions between the jasmonic and salicylic acid pathway modulate the plant metabolome and affect herbivores of different feeding types.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schweiger, R; Heise, A-M; Persicke, M; Müller, C

    2014-07-01

    The phytohormones jasmonic acid (JA) and salicylic acid (SA) mediate induced plant defences and the corresponding pathways interact in a complex manner as has been shown on the transcript and proteine level. Downstream, metabolic changes are important for plant-herbivore interactions. This study investigated metabolic changes in leaf tissue and phloem exudates of Plantago lanceolata after single and combined JA and SA applications as well as consequences on chewing-biting (Heliothis virescens) and piercing-sucking (Myzus persicae) herbivores. Targeted metabolite profiling and untargeted metabolic fingerprinting uncovered different categories of plant metabolites, which were influenced in a specific manner, indicating points of divergence, convergence, positive crosstalk and pronounced mutual antagonism between the signaling pathways. Phytohormone-specific decreases of primary metabolite pool sizes in the phloem exudates may indicate shifts in sink-source relations, resource allocation, nutrient uptake or photosynthesis. Survival of both herbivore species was significantly reduced by JA and SA treatments. However, the combined application of JA and SA attenuated the negative effects at least against H. virescens suggesting that mutual antagonism between the JA and SA pathway may be responsible. Pathway interactions provide a great regulatory potential for the plant that allows triggering of appropriate defences when attacked by different antagonist species. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  13. Herbivore handling of a plant's trichome: the case of Heliconius charithonia (L.) (Lepidoptera: Nymphalidae) and Passiflora lobata (Killip) Hutch. (Passifloraceae)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cardoso, Marcio Z.

    2008-01-01

    Trichomes reduce herbivore attack on plants by physically and/or chemically inhibiting movement or other activities. Despite evidence that herbivores are negatively affected by trichomes there also reports of insect counter-adaptations that circumvent the plant's defense. This paper reports on a study that investigated the likely mechanisms employed by larvae of the nymphalid butterfly, Heliconius charithonia (L.), that allow it to feed on a host that is presumably protected by hooked trichomes (Passiflora lobata (Killip) Hutch). Evidence were gathered using data from direct observations of larval movement and behavior, faeces analysis, scanning electron microscopy of plant surface and experimental analysis of larval movement on plants with and without trichomes (manually removed). The latter involved a comparison with a non specialist congener, Heliconius pachinus Salvin. Observations showed that H. charithonia larvae are capable of freeing themselves from entrapment on trichome tips by physical force. Moreover, wandering larvae lay silk mats on the trichomes and remove their tips by biting. In fact, trichome tips were found in the faeces. Experimental removal of trichomes aided in the movement of the non specialist but had no noticeable effect on the specialist larvae. These results support the suggestion that trichomes are capable of deterring a non specialist herbivore (H. pachinus). The precise mechanisms that allow the success of H. charithonia are not known, but I suggest that a blend of behavioral as well as physical resistance mechanisms is involved. Future studies should ascertain whether larval integument provides physical resistance to trichomes. (author)

  14. Experimental assemblage of novel plant-herbivore interactions: ecological host shifts after 40 million years of isolation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garcia-Robledo, Carlos; Horvitz, Carol C; Kress, W John; Carvajal-Acosta, A Nalleli; Erwin, Terry L; Staines, Charles L

    2017-11-01

    Geographic isolation is the first step in insect herbivore diet specialization. Such specialization is postulated to increase insect fitness, but may simultaneously reduce insect ability to colonize novel hosts. During the Paleocene-Eocene, plants from the order Zingiberales became isolated either in the Paleotropics or in the Neotropics. During the Cretaceous, rolled-leaf beetles diversified in the Neotropics concurrently with Neotropical Zingiberales. Using a community of Costa Rican rolled-leaf beetles and their Zingiberales host plants as study system, we explored if previous geographic isolation precludes insects to expand their diets to exotic hosts. We recorded interactions between rolled-leaf beetles and native Zingiberales by combining DNA barcodes and field records for 7450 beetles feeding on 3202 host plants. To determine phylogenetic patterns of diet expansions, we set 20 field plots including five exotic Zingiberales, recording beetles feeding on these exotic hosts. In the laboratory, using both native and exotic host plants, we reared a subset of insect species that had expanded their diets to the exotic plants. The original plant-herbivore community comprised 24 beetle species feeding on 35 native hosts, representing 103 plant-herbivore interactions. After exotic host plant introduction, 20% of the beetle species expanded their diets to exotic Zingiberales. Insects only established on exotic hosts that belong to the same plant family as their native hosts. Laboratory experiments show that beetles are able to complete development on these novel hosts. In conclusion, rolled-leaf beetles are pre-adapted to expand their diets to novel host plants even after millions of years of geographic isolation.

  15. Nitrogen cycling in an extreme hyperarid environment inferred from δ15N analyses of plants, soils and herbivore diet

    Science.gov (United States)

    Díaz, Francisca P.; Frugone, Matías; Gutiérrez, Rodrigo A.; Latorre, Claudio

    2016-03-01

    Climate controls on the nitrogen cycle are suggested by the negative correlation between precipitation and δ15N values across different ecosystems. For arid ecosystems this is unclear, as water limitation among other factors can confound this relationship. We measured herbivore feces, foliar and soil δ15N and δ13C values and chemically characterized soils (pH and elemental composition) along an elevational/climatic gradient in the Atacama Desert, northern Chile. Although very positive δ15N values span the entire gradient, soil δ15N values show a positive correlation with aridity as expected. In contrast, foliar δ15N values and herbivore feces show a hump-shaped relationship with elevation, suggesting that plants are using a different N source, possibly of biotic origin. Thus at the extreme limits of plant life, biotic interactions may be just as important as abiotic processes, such as climate in explaining ecosystem δ15N values.

  16. Nitrogen cycling in an extreme hyperarid environment inferred from δ(15)N analyses of plants, soils and herbivore diet.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Díaz, Francisca P; Frugone, Matías; Gutiérrez, Rodrigo A; Latorre, Claudio

    2016-03-09

    Climate controls on the nitrogen cycle are suggested by the negative correlation between precipitation and δ(15)N values across different ecosystems. For arid ecosystems this is unclear, as water limitation among other factors can confound this relationship. We measured herbivore feces, foliar and soil δ(15)N and δ(13)C values and chemically characterized soils (pH and elemental composition) along an elevational/climatic gradient in the Atacama Desert, northern Chile. Although very positive δ(15)N values span the entire gradient, soil δ(15)N values show a positive correlation with aridity as expected. In contrast, foliar δ(15)N values and herbivore feces show a hump-shaped relationship with elevation, suggesting that plants are using a different N source, possibly of biotic origin. Thus at the extreme limits of plant life, biotic interactions may be just as important as abiotic processes, such as climate in explaining ecosystem δ(15)N values.

  17. Contrasting effects of ethylene biosynthesis on induced plant resistance against a chewing and a piercing-sucking herbivore in rice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lu, Jing; Li, Jiancai; Ju, Hongping; Liu, Xiaoli; Erb, Matthias; Wang, Xia; Lou, Yonggen

    2014-11-01

    Ethylene is a stress hormone with contrasting effects on herbivore resistance. However, it remains unknown whether these differences are plant- or herbivore-specific. We cloned a rice 1-aminocyclopropane-1-carboxylic acid (ACC) synthase gene, OsACS2, whose transcripts were rapidly up-regulated in response to mechanical wounding and infestation by two important pests: the striped stem borer (SSB) Chilo suppressalis and the brown planthopper (BPH) Nilaparvata lugens. Antisense expression of OsACS2 (as-acs) reduced elicited ethylene emission, SSB-elicited trypsin protease inhibitor (TrypPI) activity, SSB-induced volatile release, and SSB resistance. Exogenous application of ACC restored TrypPI activity and SSB resistance. In contrast to SSB, BPH infestation increased volatile emission in as-acs lines. Accordingly, BPH preferred to feed and oviposit on wild-type (WT) plants--an effect that could be attributed to two repellent volatiles, 2-heptanone and 2-heptanol, that were emitted in higher amounts by as-acs plants. BPH honeydew excretion was reduced and natural enemy attraction was enhanced in as-acs lines, resulting in higher overall resistance to BPH. These results demonstrate that ethylene signaling has contrasting, herbivore-specific effects on rice defense responses and resistance against a chewing and a piercing-sucking insect, and may mediate resistance trade-offs between herbivores of different feeding guilds in rice. © The Author 2014. Published by the Molecular Plant Shanghai Editorial Office in association with Oxford University Press on behalf of CSPB and IPPE, SIBS, CAS.

  18. Transcriptomics and molecular evolutionary rate analysis of the bladderwort (Utricularia, a carnivorous plant with a minimal genome

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Herrera-Estrella Alfredo

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The carnivorous plant Utricularia gibba (bladderwort is remarkable in having a minute genome, which at ca. 80 megabases is approximately half that of Arabidopsis. Bladderworts show an incredible diversity of forms surrounding a defined theme: tiny, bladder-like suction traps on terrestrial, epiphytic, or aquatic plants with a diversity of unusual vegetative forms. Utricularia plants, which are rootless, are also anomalous in physiological features (respiration and carbon distribution, and highly enhanced molecular evolutionary rates in chloroplast, mitochondrial and nuclear ribosomal sequences. Despite great interest in the genus, no genomic resources exist for Utricularia, and the substitution rate increase has received limited study. Results Here we describe the sequencing and analysis of the Utricularia gibba transcriptome. Three different organs were surveyed, the traps, the vegetative shoot bodies, and the inflorescence stems. We also examined the bladderwort transcriptome under diverse stress conditions. We detail aspects of functional classification, tissue similarity, nitrogen and phosphorus metabolism, respiration, DNA repair, and detoxification of reactive oxygen species (ROS. Long contigs of plastid and mitochondrial genomes, as well as sequences for 100 individual nuclear genes, were compared with those of other plants to better establish information on molecular evolutionary rates. Conclusion The Utricularia transcriptome provides a detailed genomic window into processes occurring in a carnivorous plant. It contains a deep representation of the complex metabolic pathways that characterize a putative minimal plant genome, permitting its use as a source of genomic information to explore the structural, functional, and evolutionary diversity of the genus. Vegetative shoots and traps are the most similar organs by functional classification of their transcriptome, the traps expressing hydrolytic enzymes for prey

  19. The nitrogen window for arctic herbivores: plant phenology and protein gain of migratory caribou (Rangifer tarandus)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barboza, Perry S.; Van Someren, Lindsay L.; Gustine, David D.; Bret-Harte, M. Syndonia

    2018-01-01

    Terrestrial plants are often limited by nitrogen (N) in arctic systems, but constraints of N supply on herbivores are typically considered secondary to those of energy. We tested the hypothesis that forage N is more limiting than energy for arctic caribou by collecting key forages (three species of graminoids, three species of woody browse, and one genus of forb) over three summers in the migratory range of the Central Arctic Herd in Alaska from the Brooks Range to the Coastal Plain on the Arctic Ocean. We combined in vitro digestion and detergent extraction to measure fiber, digestible energy, and usable fractions of N in forages (n = 771). Digestible energy content fell below the minimum threshold value of 9 kJ/g for one single forage group: graminoids, and only beyond 64–75 d from parturition (6 June), whereas all forages fell below the minimum threshold value for digestible N (1% of dry matter) before female caribou would have weaned their calves at 100 d from parturition. The window for digestible N was shortest for browse, which fell below 1% at 30–41 d from parturition, whereas digestible N contents of graminoids were adequate until 46–57 d from parturition. The low quality of browse as a source of N was also apparent from concentrations of available N (i.e., the N not bound to fiber) that were distribution and growth of the population.

  20. Network topology: patterns and mechanisms in plant-herbivore and host-parasitoid food webs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cagnolo, Luciano; Salvo, Adriana; Valladares, Graciela

    2011-03-01

    1. Biological communities are organized in complex interaction networks such as food webs, which topology appears to be non-random. Gradients, compartments, nested subsets and even combinations of these structures have been shown in bipartite networks. However, in most studies only one pattern is tested against randomness and mechanistic hypotheses are generally lacking. 2. Here we examined the topology of regional, coexisting plant-herbivore and host-parasitoid food webs to discriminate between the mentioned network patterns. We also evaluated the role of species body size, local abundance, regional frequency and phylogeny as determinants of network topology. 3. We found both food webs to be compartmented, with interaction range boundaries imposed by host phylogeny. Species degree within compartments was mostly related to their regional frequency and local abundance. Only one compartment showed an internal nested structure in the distribution of interactions between species, but species position within this compartment was unrelated to species size or abundance. 4. These results suggest that compartmentalization may be more common than previously considered, and that network structure is a result of multiple, hierarchical, non-exclusive processes. © 2010 The Authors. Journal compilation © 2010 British Ecological Society.

  1. Effect of Drought on Herbivore-Induced Plant Gene Expression: Population Comparison for Range Limit Inferences

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gunbharpur Singh Gill

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Low elevation “trailing edge” range margin populations typically face increases in both abiotic and biotic stressors that may contribute to range limit development. We hypothesize that selection may act on ABA and JA signaling pathways for more stable expression needed for range expansion, but that antagonistic crosstalk prevents their simultaneous co-option. To test this hypothesis, we compared high and low elevation populations of Boechera stricta that have diverged with respect to constitutive levels of glucosinolate defenses and root:shoot ratios; neither population has high levels of both traits. If constraints imposed by antagonistic signaling underlie this divergence, one would predict that high constitutive levels of traits would coincide with lower plasticity. To test this prediction, we compared the genetically diverged populations in a double challenge drought-herbivory growth chamber experiment. Although a glucosinolate defense response to the generalist insect herbivore Spodoptera exigua was attenuated under drought conditions, the plastic defense response did not differ significantly between populations. Similarly, although several potential drought tolerance traits were measured, only stomatal aperture behavior, as measured by carbon isotope ratios, was less plastic as predicted in the high elevation population. However, RNAseq results on a small subset of plants indicated differential expression of relevant genes between populations as predicted. We suggest that the ambiguity in our results stems from a weaker link between the pathways and the functional traits compared to transcripts.

  2. The Herbivore-Induced Plant Volatiles Methyl Salicylate and Menthol Positively affect Growth and Pathogenicity of Entomopathogenic Fungi

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Yongwen; Qasim, Muhammad; Hussain, Mubasher; Akutse, Komivi Senyo; Avery, Pasco Bruce; Dash, Chandra Kanta; Wang, Liande

    2017-01-01

    Some herbivore-induced-plant volatiles (HIPVs) compounds are vital for the functioning of an ecosystem, by triggering multi-trophic interactions for natural enemies, plants and herbivores. However, the effect of these chemicals, which play a crucial role in regulating the multi-trophic interactions between plant-herbivore-entomopathogenic fungi, is still unknown. To fill this scientific gap, we therefore investigated how these chemicals influence the entomopathogenic fungi growth and efficacy. In this study, Lipaphis erysimi induced Arabidopsis thaliana HIPVs were collected using headspace system and detected with GC-MS, and then analyzed the effects of these HIPVs chemicals on Lecanicillium lecanii strain V3450. We found that the HIPVs menthol and methyl salicylate at 1 and 10 nmol·ml-1 improved many performance aspects of the fungus, such as germination, sporulation, appressorial formation as well as its pathogenicity and virulence. These findings are not only important for understanding the multi-trophic interactions in an ecosystem, but also would contribute for developing new and easier procedures for conidial mass production as well as improve the pathogenicity and virulence of entomopathogenic fungi in biological pest management strategies.

  3. Plant strengtheners enhance parasitoid attraction to herbivore-damaged cotton via qualitative and quantitative changes in induced volatiles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sobhy, Islam S; Erb, Matthias; Turlings, Ted C J

    2015-05-01

    Herbivore-damaged plants release a blend of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that differs from undamaged plants. These induced changes are known to attract the natural enemies of the herbivores and therefore are expected to be important determinants of the effectiveness of biological control in agriculture. One way of boosting this phenomenon is the application of plant strengtheners, which has been shown to enhance parasitoid attraction in maize. It is unclear whether this is also the case for other important crops. The plant strengtheners BTH [benzo (1,2,3) thiadiazole-7-carbothioic acid S-methyl ester] and laminarin were applied to cotton plants, and the effects on volatile releases and the attraction of three hymenopteran parasitoids, Cotesia marginiventris, Campoletis sonorensis and Microplitis rufiventris, were studied. After treated and untreated plants were induced by real or simulated caterpillar feeding, it was found that BTH treatment increased the attraction of the parasitoids, whereas laminarin had no significant effect. BTH treatment selectively increased the release of two homoterpenes and reduced the emission of indole, the latter of which had been shown to interfere with parasitoid attraction in earlier studies. Canonical variate analyses of the data show that the parasitoid responses were dependent on the quality rather than the quantity of volatile emission in this tritrophic interaction. Overall, these results strengthen the emerging paradigm that induction of plant defences with chemical elicitors such as BTH could provide a sustainable and environmentally friendly strategy for biological control of pests by enhancing the attractiveness of cultivated plants to natural enemies of insect herbivores. © 2014 Society of Chemical Industry.

  4. The effect of plant identity and the level of plant decay on molecular gut content analysis in a herbivorous soil insect

    OpenAIRE

    Wallinger, Corinna; Staudacher, Karin; Schallhart, Nikolaus; Peter, Eva; Dresch, Philipp; Juen, Anita; Traugott, Michael

    2012-01-01

    Plant roots represent an important food source for soil-dwelling animals, but tracking herbivore food choices below-ground is difficult. Here, we present an optimized PCR assay for the detection of plant DNA in the guts of invertebrates, using general plant primers targeting the trnT-F chloroplast DNA region. Based on this assay, we assessed the influence of plant identity on the detectability of ingested plant DNA in Agriotes click beetle larvae. Six different plant species were fed to the i...

  5. Herbivore removal reduces influence of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi on plant growth and tolerance in an East African savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    González, Jonathan B; Petipas, Renee H; Franken, Oscar; Kiers, E Toby; Veblen, Kari E; Brody, Alison K

    2018-05-01

    The functional relationship between arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) and their hosts is variable on small spatial scales. Here, we hypothesized that herbivore exclusion changes the AMF community and alters the ability of AMF to enhance plant tolerance to grazing. We grew the perennial bunchgrass, Themeda triandra Forssk in inoculum from soils collected in the Kenya Long-term Exclosure Experiment where treatments representing different levels of herbivory have been in place since 1995. We assessed AMF diversity in the field, using terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism and compared fungal diversity among treatments. We conducted clipping experiments in the greenhouse and field and assessed regrowth. Plants inoculated with AMF from areas accessed by wild herbivores and cattle had greater biomass than non-inoculated controls, while plants inoculated with AMF from where large herbivores were excluded did not benefit from AMF in terms of biomass production. However, only the inoculation with AMF from areas with wild herbivores and no cattle had a positive effect on regrowth, relative to clipped plants grown without AMF. Similarly, in the field, regrowth of plants after clipping in areas with only native herbivores was higher than other treatments. Functional differences in AMF were evident despite little difference in AMF species richness or community composition. Our findings suggest that differences in large herbivore communities over nearly two decades has resulted in localized, functional changes in AMF communities. Our results add to the accumulating evidence that mycorrhizae are locally adapted and that functional differences can evolve within small geographical areas.

  6. Carnivorous heterotopias

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lapina, Linda; Leer, Jonatan

    2016-01-01

    . We argue that these spaces of consumption express nostalgia and longing for authenticity that are simultaneously articulated as progressive and emancipatory. Consequently, these sites represent middle-class masculine counter-spaces – masculine, carnivorous heterotopias where archaic, working class...... and decorations), appeasing a presumed masculine appetite and conveying ideas about masculine, carnivorous bonding/community and a masculine, heterosexual, middle-class gaze. This article examines two manifestations of these celebrations of meat and masculinity: the hotdog restaurant Foderbrættet (‘The Bird Table......’, opened in 2014 and elected as the 2014 Best New Restaurant in Copenhagen) and WarPigs, a Texas-inspired barbecue opened in 2015. We discuss negotiations of masculinity in these meatscapes that challenge contemporary ideals for (sustainable, moderate, wholesome) food consumption and gender performances...

  7. Availability and temporal heterogeneity of water supply affect the vertical distribution and mortality of a belowground herbivore and consequently plant growth.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsunoda, Tomonori; Kachi, Naoki; Suzuki, Jun-Ichirou

    2014-01-01

    We examined how the volume and temporal heterogeneity of water supply changed the vertical distribution and mortality of a belowground herbivore, and consequently affected plant biomass. Plantago lanceolata (Plantaginaceae) seedlings were grown at one per pot under different combinations of water volume (large or small volume) and heterogeneity (homogeneous water conditions, watered every day; heterogeneous conditions, watered every 4 days) in the presence or absence of a larva of the belowground herbivorous insect, Anomala cuprea (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae). The larva was confined in different vertical distributions to top feeding zone (top treatment), middle feeding zone (middle treatment), or bottom feeding zone (bottom treatment); alternatively no larva was introduced (control treatment) or larval movement was not confined (free treatment). Three-way interaction between water volume, heterogeneity, and the herbivore significantly affected plant biomass. With a large water volume, plant biomass was lower in free treatment than in control treatment regardless of heterogeneity. Plant biomass in free treatment was as low as in top treatment. With a small water volume and in free treatment, plant biomass was low (similar to that under top treatment) under homogeneous water conditions but high under heterogeneous ones (similar to that under middle or bottom treatment). Therefore, there was little effect of belowground herbivory on plant growth under heterogeneous water conditions. In other watering regimes, herbivores would be distributed in the shallow soil and reduced root biomass. Herbivore mortality was high with homogeneous application of a large volume or heterogeneous application of a small water volume. Under the large water volume, plant biomass was high in pots in which the herbivore had died. Thus, the combinations of water volume and heterogeneity affected plant growth via the change of a belowground herbivore.

  8. Isotopic and anatomical evidence of an herbivorous diet in the Early Tertiary giant bird Gastornis. Implications for the structure of Paleocene terrestrial ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Angst, D.; Lécuyer, C.; Amiot, R.; Buffetaut, E.; Fourel, F.; Martineau, F.; Legendre, S.; Abourachid, A.; Herrel, A.

    2014-04-01

    The mode of life of the early Tertiary giant bird Gastornis has long been a matter of controversy. Although it has often been reconstructed as an apex predator feeding on small mammals, according to other interpretations, it was in fact a large herbivore. To determine the diet of this bird, we analyze here the carbon isotope composition of the bone apatite from Gastornis and contemporaneous herbivorous mammals. Based on 13C-enrichment measured between carbonate and diet of carnivorous and herbivorous modern birds, the carbonate δ13C values of Gastornis bone remains, recovered from four Paleocene and Eocene French localities, indicate that this bird fed on plants. This is confirmed by a morphofunctional study showing that the reconstructed jaw musculature of Gastornis was similar to that of living herbivorous birds and unlike that of carnivorous forms. The herbivorous Gastornis was the largest terrestrial tetrapod in the Paleocene biota of Europe, unlike the situation in North America and Asia, where Gastornis is first recorded in the early Eocene, and the largest Paleocene animals were herbivorous mammals. The structure of the Paleocene terrestrial ecosystems of Europe may have been similar to that of some large islands, notably Madagascar, prior to the arrival of humans.

  9. The bamboo-eating giant panda harbors a carnivore-like gut microbiota, with excessive seasonal variations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xue, Zhengsheng; Zhang, Wenping; Wang, Linghua; Hou, Rong; Zhang, Menghui; Fei, Lisong; Zhang, Xiaojun; Huang, He; Bridgewater, Laura C; Jiang, Yi; Jiang, Chenglin; Zhao, Liping; Pang, Xiaoyan; Zhang, Zhihe

    2015-05-19

    anatomically specialized digestive systems to efficiently deconstruct fibrous plant matter, the giant panda still retains a gastrointestinal tract typical of carnivores. We characterized the fecal bacterial communities from a giant panda population to determine whether this animal relies on its symbiotic gut microbiota to cope with the complex carbohydrates that dominate its diet, as is common in other herbivores. We found that the giant panda gut microbiota is low in diversity and highly variable across seasons. It also shows an overall composition typical of bears and entirely differentiated from other herbivores, with low levels of putative cellulose-digesting bacteria. The gut microbiota of this herbivore, therefore, may not have well adapted to its highly fibrous diet, suggesting a potential link with its poor digestive efficiency. Copyright © 2015 Xue et al.

  10. Trade-off between early emergence and herbivore susceptibility mediates exotic success in an experimental California plant community.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Waterton, Joseph; Cleland, Elsa E

    2016-12-01

    Ecological trade-offs are fundamental to theory in community ecology; critical for understanding species coexistence in diverse plant communities, as well as the evolution of diverse life-history strategies. Invasions by exotic species can provide insights into the importance of trade-offs in community assembly, because the ecological strategies of invading species often differ from those present in the native species pool. Exotic annual species have invaded many Mediterranean-climate areas around the globe, and often germinate and emerge earlier in the growing season than native species. Early-season growth can enable exotic annual species to preempt space and resources, competitively suppressing later-emerging native species; however, early-emerging individuals may also be more apparent to herbivores. This suggests a potential trade-off between seasonal phenology and susceptibility to herbivory. To evaluate this hypothesis, we monitored the emergence and growth of 12 focal species (six each native and exotic) in monoculture and polyculture, while experimentally excluding generalist herbivores both early and later in the growing season. Consistent with past studies, the exotic species emerged earlier than native species. Regardless of species origin, earlier-emerging species achieved greater biomass by the end of the experiment, but were more negatively impacted by herbivory, particularly in the early part of the growing season. This greater impact of early-season herbivory on early-active species led to a reduction in the competitive advantage of exotic species growing in polyculture, and improved the performance of later-emerging natives. Such a trade-off between early growth and susceptibility to herbivores could be an important force in community assembly in seasonal herbaceous-dominated ecosystems. These results also show how herbivore exclusion favors early-active exotic species in this system, with important implications for management in many areas invaded

  11. Indole-3-Acetic Acid-Producing Yeasts in the Phyllosphere of the Carnivorous Plant Drosera indica L

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shin, Li-Ying; Wei, Jyuan-Yu; Fu, Shih-Feng; Chou, Jui-Yu

    2014-01-01

    Yeasts are widely distributed in nature and exist in association with other microorganisms as normal inhabitants of soil, vegetation, and aqueous environments. In this study, 12 yeast strains were enriched and isolated from leaf samples of the carnivorous plant Drosera indica L., which is currently threatened because of restricted habitats and use in herbal industries. According to similarities in large subunit and small subunit ribosomal RNA gene sequences, we identified 2 yeast species in 2 genera of the phylum Ascomycota, and 5 yeast species in 5 genera of the phylum Basidiomycota. All of the isolated yeasts produced indole-3-acetic acid (IAA) when cultivated in YPD broth supplemented with 0.1% L-tryptophan. Growth conditions, such as the pH and temperature of the medium, influenced yeast IAA production. Our results also suggested the existence of a tryptophan-independent IAA biosynthetic pathway. We evaluated the effects of various concentrations of exogenous IAA on yeast growth and observed that IAA produced by wild yeasts modifies auxin-inducible gene expression in Arabidopsis. Our data suggest that yeasts can promote plant growth and support ongoing prospecting of yeast strains for inclusion into biofertilizer for sustainable agriculture. PMID:25464336

  12. Evolution of resistance to a multiple-herbivore community: genetic correlations, diffuse coevolution, and constraints on the plant's response to selection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wise, Michael J; Rausher, Mark D

    2013-06-01

    Although plants are generally attacked by a community of several species of herbivores, relatively little is known about the strength of natural selection for resistance in multiple-herbivore communities-particularly how the strength of selection differs among herbivores that feed on different plant organs or how strongly genetic correlations in resistance affect the evolutionary responses of the plant. Here, we report on a field study measuring natural selection for resistance in a diverse community of herbivores of Solanum carolinense. Using linear phenotypic-selection analyses, we found that directional selection acted to increase resistance to seven species. Selection was strongest to increase resistance to fruit feeders, followed by flower feeders, then leaf feeders. Selection favored a decrease in resistance to a stem borer. Bootstrapping analyses showed that the plant population contained significant genetic variation for each of 14 measured resistance traits and significant covariances in one-third of the pairwise combinations of resistance traits. These genetic covariances reduced the plant's overall predicted evolutionary response for resistance against the herbivore community by about 60%. Diffuse (co)evolution was widespread in this community, and the diffuse interactions had an overwhelmingly constraining (rather than facilitative) effect on the plant's evolution of resistance. © 2013 The Author(s). Evolution © 2013 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  13. Effect of post-fire resprouting on leaf fluctuating asymmetry, extrafloral nectar quality, and ant-plant-herbivore interactions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alves-Silva, Estevão; Del-Claro, Kleber

    2013-06-01

    Fires in the Cerrado savanna are a severe form of disturbance, but some species are capable of resprouting afterwards. It is unknown, however, how and whether post-fire resprouting represents a stressful condition to plants and how their rapid re-growth influences both the production of biochemical compounds, and interactions with mutualistic ants. In this study, we examined the influence of post-fire resprouting on biotic interactions (ant-plant-herbivore relationships) and on plant stress. The study was performed on two groups of the extrafloral nectaried shrub Banisteriopsis campestris (Malpighiaceae); one group was recovering from fire while the other acted as control. With respect to biotic interactions, we examined whether resprouting influenced extrafloral nectar concentration (milligrams per microliter), the abundance of the ant Camponotus crassus and leaf herbivory rates. Plant stress was assessed via fluctuating asymmetry (FA) analysis, which refers to deviations from perfect symmetry in bilaterally symmetrical traits (e.g., leaves) and indicates whether species are under stress. Results revealed that FA, sugar concentration, and ant abundance were 51.7 %, 35.7 % and 21.7 % higher in resprouting plants. Furthermore, C. crassus was significantly associated with low herbivory rates, but only in resprouting plants. This study showed that post-fire resprouting induced high levels of plant stress and influenced extrafloral nectar quality and ant-herbivore relationships in B. campestris. Therefore, despite being a stressful condition to the plant, post-fire resprouting individuals had concentrated extrafloral nectar and sustained more ants, thus strengthening the outcomes of ant-plant mutualism.

  14. Plant-herbivore interactions along elevational gradient: Comparison of field and common garden data

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Rokaya, Maan Bahadur; Dostálek, Tomáš; Münzbergová, Zuzana

    2016-01-01

    Roč. 77, November 2016 (2016), s. 168-175 ISSN 1146-609X R&D Projects: GA ČR GP13-10850P Institutional support: RVO:67985939 Keywords : anti-herbivore defense * altitude * Himalayan region Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 1.652, year: 2016

  15. Landscape and host plant effects on reproduction by a mobile, polyphagous, multivoltine arthropod herbivore

    Science.gov (United States)

    Landscape factors can significantly influence arthropod natural enemy and herbivore pest populations. The economically important brown stink bug, Euschistus servus, is a native mobile, polyphagous and multivoltine pest of many crops in southeastern USA and understanding the relative influence of loc...

  16. Incorporation of an invasive plant into a native insect herbivore food web

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schilthuizen, Menno; Santos Pimenta, Lúcia P; Lammers, Youri; Steenbergen, Peter J; Flohil, Marco; Beveridge, Nils G P; van Duijn, Pieter T; Meulblok, Marjolein M; Sosef, Nils; van de Ven, Robin; Werring, Ralf; Beentjes, Kevin K; Meijer, Kim; Vos, Rutger A; Vrieling, Klaas; Gravendeel, Barbara; Choi, Young; Verpoorte, Robert; Smit, Chris; Beukeboom, Leo W

    2016-01-01

    The integration of invasive species into native food webs represent multifarious dynamics of ecological and evolutionary processes. We document incorporation of Prunus serotina (black cherry) into native insect food webs. We find that P. serotina harbours a herbivore community less dense but more

  17. The nitrogen window for arctic herbivores: plant phenology and protein gain of migratory caribou (Rangifer tarandus)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barboza, Perry S.; Van Someren, Lindsay L.; Gustine, David D.; Bret-Harte, M. Syndonia

    2018-01-01

    Terrestrial plants are often limited by nitrogen (N) in arctic systems, but constraints of N supply on herbivores are typically considered secondary to those of energy. We tested the hypothesis that forage N is more limiting than energy for arctic caribou by collecting key forages (three species of graminoids, three species of woody browse, and one genus of forb) over three summers in the migratory range of the Central Arctic Herd in Alaska from the Brooks Range to the Coastal Plain on the Arctic Ocean. We combined in vitro digestion and detergent extraction to measure fiber, digestible energy, and usable fractions of N in forages (n = 771). Digestible energy content fell below the minimum threshold value of 9 kJ/g for one single forage group: graminoids, and only beyond 64–75 d from parturition (6 June), whereas all forages fell below the minimum threshold value for digestible N (1% of dry matter) before female caribou would have weaned their calves at 100 d from parturition. The window for digestible N was shortest for browse, which fell below 1% at 30–41 d from parturition, whereas digestible N contents of graminoids were adequate until 46–57 d from parturition. The low quality of browse as a source of N was also apparent from concentrations of available N (i.e., the N not bound to fiber) that were <1% at 72–80 d from parturition. The Coastal Plain may be favored by female caribou because available and digestible concentrations of N are not only greater than those on the Brooks Range, the window of usable N on the Coastal Plain extends the period of protein gain for females and their calves by 17 d. Conversely, inland areas with greater biomass and densities of digestible N than the Coastal Plain may be more favorable for large male caribou that begin gaining protein from spring to breed in autumn. Our study provides evidence that phenological windows for protein gain in caribou are both spatially and temporally dynamic and likely to affect the

  18. Breakdown of an ant-plant mutualism follows the loss of large herbivores from an African savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palmer, Todd M; Stanton, Maureen L; Young, Truman P; Goheen, Jacob R; Pringle, Robert M; Karban, Richard

    2008-01-11

    Mutualisms are key components of biodiversity and ecosystem function, yet the forces maintaining them are poorly understood. We investigated the effects of removing large mammals on an ant-Acacia mutualism in an African savanna. Ten years of large-herbivore exclusion reduced the nectar and housing provided by plants to ants, increasing antagonistic behavior by a mutualistic ant associate and shifting competitive dominance within the plant-ant community from this nectar-dependent mutualist to an antagonistic species that does not depend on plant rewards. Trees occupied by this antagonist suffered increased attack by stem-boring beetles, grew more slowly, and experienced doubled mortality relative to trees occupied by the mutualistic ant. These results show that large mammals maintain cooperation within a widespread symbiosis and suggest complex cascading effects of megafaunal extinction.

  19. Extraction and quantification of "condensed tannins" as a measure of plant anti-herbivore defence? Revisiting an old problem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heil, Martin; Baumann, Birgit; Andary, Claude; Linsenmair, K Eduard; McKey, Doyle

    2002-11-01

    Contents of phenolic compounds in leaf extracts often serve as a measure of plant anti-herbivore defence. This method suffers from the multifunctionality of phenolics and from problems with their colorimetric quantification. Here we present further evidence for the pertinence of these problems. Contents of condensed tannins (CCT) were spectrophotometrically quantified in leaf extracts of 11 closely related mimosoid species, and Spodoptera littoralis caterpillars were reared on artificial diet containing these extracts. The relationship of CCT with caterpillar growth differed considerably among plant species, since both positive and negative correlations were detected. There was, however, a negative correlation of CCT with fungal spore germination, indicating a role of these compounds in resistance to fungi. Detailed knowledge on the structure and biological function of defensive compounds and on the overall composition of leaves is required to estimate a plant's defensive efficacy against a particular group of enemies.

  20. Forage plants of an Arctic-nesting herbivore show larger warming response in breeding than wintering grounds, potentially disrupting migration phenology

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lameris, T.K.; Jochems, Femke; van der Graaf, A.J.; Andersson, M.; Limpens, J.; Nolet, B.A.

    2017-01-01

    During spring migration, herbivorous waterfowl breeding in the Arctic depend on peaks in the supply of nitrogen-rich forage plants, following a “green wave” of grass growth along their flyway to fuel migration and reproduction. The effects of climate warming on forage plant growth are expected to be

  1. Carnivorous heterotopias

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lapina, Linda; Leer, Jonatan

    2016-01-01

    . We argue that these spaces of consumption express nostalgia and longing for authenticity that are simultaneously articulated as progressive and emancipatory. Consequently, these sites represent middle class masculine counter-spaces where archaic, working class modes of doing masculinity (such...... and decorations), appeasing a presumed masculine appetite and conveying ideas about masculine, carnivorous bonding/community and a masculine, heterosexual, middle class gaze. This article examines two manifestations of these celebrations of meat and masculinity: the hotdog restaurant Foderbrættet (‘The Bird Table......’, opened in 2014 and elected as the 2014 Best New Restaurant in Copenhagen) and WarPigs, a Texas-inspired barbecue opened in 2015. We discuss negotiations of masculinity in these meatscapes that challenge contemporary ideals for (sustainable, moderate, wholesome) food consumption and gender performances...

  2. Fastest predators in the plant kingdom: functional morphology and biomechanics of suction traps found in the largest genus of carnivorous plants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poppinga, Simon; Weisskopf, Carmen; Westermeier, Anna Sophia; Masselter, Tom; Speck, Thomas

    2016-01-01

    Understanding the physics of plant movements, which describe the interplay between plant architecture, movement speed and actuation principles, is essential for the comprehension of important processes like plant morphogenesis. Recent investigations especially on rapid plant movements at the interface of biology, physics and engineering sciences highlight how such fast motions can be achieved without the presence of muscles, nerves and technical hinge analogies. The suction traps (bladders) of carnivorous bladderworts (Utricularia spp., Lentibulariaceae, Lamiales) are considered as some of the most elaborate moving structures in the plant kingdom. A complex interplay of morphological and physiological adaptations allows the traps to pump water out of their body and to store elastic energy in the deformed bladder walls. Mechanical stimulation by prey entails opening of the otherwise watertight trapdoor, followed by trap wall relaxation, sucking in of water and prey, and consecutive trapdoor closure. Suction can also occur spontaneously in non-stimulated traps. We review the current state of knowledge about the suction trap mechanism with a focus on architectonically homogeneous traps of aquatic bladderwort species from section Utricularia (the so-called ‘Utricularia vulgaris trap type’). The functional morphology and biomechanics of the traps are described in detail. We discuss open questions and propose promising aspects for future studies on these sophisticated ultra-fast trapping devices. PMID:26602984

  3. Seasonal phenology of interactions involving short-lived annual plants, a multivoltine herbivore and its endoparasitoid wasp.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fei, Minghui; Gols, Rieta; Harvey, Jeffrey A

    2014-01-01

    Spatial-temporal realism is often missing in many studies of multitrophic interactions, which are conducted at a single time frame and/or involving interactions between insects with a single species of plant. In this scenario, an underlying assumption is that the host-plant species is ubiquitous throughout the season and that the insects always interact with it. We studied interactions involving three naturally occurring wild species of cruciferous plants, Brassica rapa, Sinapis arvensis and Brassica nigra, that exhibit different seasonal phenologies, and a multivoltine herbivore, the large cabbage white butterfly, Pieris brassicae, and its gregarious endoparasitoid wasp, Cotesia glomerata. The three plants have very short life cycles. In central Europe, B. rapa grows in early spring, S. arvensis in late spring and early summer, and B. nigra in mid to late summer. P. brassicae generally has three generations per year, and C. glomerata at least two. This means that different generations of the insects must find and exploit different plant species that may differ in quality and which may be found some distance from one another. Insects were either reared on each of the three plant species for three successive generations or shifted between generations from B. rapa to S. arvensis to B. nigra. Development time from neonate to pupation and pupal fresh mass were determined in P. brassicae and egg-to-adult development time and body mass in C. glomerata. Overall, herbivores performed marginally better on S. arvensis and B. nigra plants than on B. rapa plants. Parasitoids performance was closely tailored with that of the host. Irrespective as to whether the insects were shifted to a new plant in successive generations or not, development time of P. brassicae and C. glomerata decreased dramatically over time. Our results show that there were some differences in insect development on different plant species and when transferred from one species to another. However, all three

  4. Cotton Fabric Coated with Conducting Polymers and its Application in Monitoring of Carnivorous Plant Response

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Václav Bajgar

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available The paper describes the electrical plant response to mechanical stimulation monitored with the help of conducting polymers deposited on cotton fabric. Cotton fabric was coated with conducting polymers, polyaniline or polypyrrole, in situ during the oxidation of respective monomers in aqueous medium. Thus, modified fabrics were again coated with polypyrrole or polyaniline, respectively, in order to investigate any synergetic effect between both polymers with respect to conductivity and its stability during repeated dry cleaning. The coating was confirmed by infrared spectroscopy. The resulting fabrics have been used as electrodes to collect the electrical response to the stimulation of a Venus flytrap plant. This is a paradigm of the use of conducting polymers in monitoring of plant neurobiology.

  5. Cotton fabric coated with conducting polymers and its application in monitoring of carnivorous plant response

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Bajgar, V.; Penhaker, M.; Martinková, L.; Pavlovič, A.; Bober, Patrycja; Trchová, Miroslava; Stejskal, Jaroslav

    2016-01-01

    Roč. 16, č. 4 (2016), 498_1-498_12 ISSN 1424-8220 R&D Projects: GA TA ČR(CZ) TE01020022 Institutional support: RVO:61389013 Keywords : conducting polymers * plant neurobiology * polyaniline Subject RIV: CG - Electrochemistry Impact factor: 2.677, year: 2016

  6. 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

  7. Impact of botanical pesticides derived from Melia azedarach and Azadirachta indica plants on the emission of volatiles that attract parasitoids of the diamondback moth to cabbage plants

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Charleston, D.S.; Gols, R.; Hordijk, C.A.; Kfir, R.; Vet, L.E.M.; Dicke, M.

    2006-01-01

    Herbivorous and carnivorous arthropods use chemical information from plants during foraging. Aqueous leaf extracts from the syringa tree Melia azedarach and commercial formulations from the neem tree Azadirachta indica, Neemix 4.5®, were investigated for their impact on the flight response of two

  8. The role of web sharing, species recognition and host-plant defence in interspecific competition between two herbivorous mite species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sato, Yukie; Alba, Juan M; Egas, Martijn; Sabelis, Maurice W

    2016-11-01

    When competing with indigenous species, invasive species face a problem, because they typically start with a few colonizers. Evidently, some species succeeded, begging an answer to the question how they invade. Here, we investigate how the invasive spider mite Tetranychus evansi interacts with the indigenous species T. urticae when sharing the solanaceous host plant tomato: do they choose to live together or to avoid each other's colonies? Both species spin protective, silken webs on the leaf surfaces, under which they live in groups of con- and possibly heterospecifics. In Spain, T. evansi invaded the non-crop field where native Tetranychus species including T. urticae dominated. Moreover, T. evansi outcompetes T. urticae when released together on a tomato plant. However, molecular plant studies suggest that T. urticae benefits from the local down-regulation of tomato plant defences by T. evansi, whereas T. evansi suffers from the induction of these defences by T. urticae. Therefore, we hypothesize that T. evansi avoids leaves infested with T. urticae whereas T. urticae prefers leaves infested by T. evansi. Using wild-type tomato and a mutant lacking jasmonate-mediated anti-herbivore defences, we tested the hypothesis and found that T. evansi avoided sharing webs with T. urticae in favour of a web with conspecifics, whereas T. urticae more frequently chose to share webs with T. evansi than with conspecifics. Also, T. evansi shows higher aggregation on a tomato plant than T. urticae, irrespective of whether the mites occur on the plant together or not.

  9. 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

  10. Herbivores shape woody plant communities in the Kruger National Park: Lessons from three long-term exclosures

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Benjamin J. Wigley

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available The role of grazers in determining vegetation community compositions and structuring plant communities is well recognised in grassy systems. The role of browsers in affecting savanna woody plant communities is less clear. We used three long-term exclosures in the Kruger National Park to determine the effect of browsers on species compositions and population structures of woody communities. Species assemblages, plant traits relating to browsing and soil nutrients were compared inside and outside of the exclosures. Our results showed that browsers directly impact plant species distributions, densities and population structures by actively selecting for species with traits which make them desirable to browsers. Species with high leaf nitrogen, low total phenolic content and low acid detergent lignin appeared to be favoured by herbivores and therefore tend to be rare outside of the exclosures. This study also suggested that browsers have important indirect effects on savanna functioning, as the reduction of woody cover can result in less litter of lower quality, which in turn can result in lower soil fertility. However, the magnitude of browser effects appeared to depend on inherent soil fertility and climate. Conservation implications: Browsers were shown to have significant impacts on plant communities. They have noticeable effects on local species diversity and population structure, as well as soil nutrients. These impacts are shown to be related to the underlying geology and climate. The effects of browsers on woody communities were shown to be greater in low rainfall, fertile areas compared to high rainfall, infertile soils.

  11. Inhibition of predator attraction to kairomones by non-host plant volatiles for herbivores: a bypass-trophic signal.

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    Qing-He Zhang

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Insect predators and parasitoids exploit attractive chemical signals from lower trophic levels as kairomones to locate their herbivore prey and hosts. We hypothesized that specific chemical cues from prey non-hosts and non-habitats, which are not part of the trophic chain, are also recognized by predators and would inhibit attraction to the host/prey kairomone signals. To test our hypothesis, we studied the olfactory physiology and behavior of a predaceous beetle, Thanasimus formicarius (L. (Coleoptera: Cleridae, in relation to specific angiosperm plant volatiles, which are non-host volatiles (NHV for its conifer-feeding bark beetle prey.Olfactory detection in the clerid was confirmed by gas chromatography coupled to electroantennographic detection (GC-EAD for a subset of NHV components. Among NHV, we identified two strongly antennally active molecules, 3-octanol and 1-octen-3-ol. We tested the potential inhibition of the combination of these two NHV on the walking and flight responses of the clerid to known kairomonal attractants such as synthetic mixtures of bark beetle (Ips spp. aggregation pheromone components (cis-verbenol, ipsdienol, and E-myrcenol combined with conifer (Picea and Pinus spp. monoterpenes (alpha-pinene, terpinolene, and Delta(3-carene. There was a strong inhibitory effect, both in the laboratory (effect size d = -3.2, walking bioassay and in the field (d = -1.0, flight trapping. This is the first report of combining antennal detection (GC-EAD and behavioral responses to identify semiochemical molecules that bypass the trophic system, signaling habitat information rather than food related information.Our results, along with recent reports on hymenopteran parasitoids and coleopteran predators, suggest that some NHV chemicals for herbivores are part of specific behavioral signals for the higher trophic level and not part of a background noise. Such bypass-trophic signals could be of general importance for third trophic level

  12. A test of genotypic variation in specificity of herbivore-induced responses in Solidago altissima L. (Asteraceae)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Uesugi, A.; Poelman, E.H.; Kessler, A.

    2013-01-01

    Plant-induced responses to multiple herbivores can mediate ecological interactions among herbivore species, thereby influencing herbivore community composition in nature. Several studies have indicated high specificity of induced responses to different herbivore species. In addition, there may be

  13. Straminipilous organisms growing on herbivorous pirapitinga (Piaractus brachypomus and carnivorous piranha (Pygocentrus nattereri from Poland Organismos stramenophila em crescimento na herbívora pirapitinga (Piaractus brachypomus e na carnívora piranha (Pygocentrus nattereri da Polônia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    B. Czeczuga

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available We investigated the growth of straminipilous organisms on the skin, muscles and liver of herbivorous pirapitinga (Piaractus brachypomus and carnivorous piranha (Pygocentrus nattereri in water of three different eutrophication levels. Sixteen straminipilous organism species were found growing on the investigated body parts of both species of fish used as baits. The higher number of species was found on the baits of carnivorous species (15 when compared with the ones from the herbivorous pirapitinga (10 species. The highest number of straminipilous organisms species developed on the skin of both species of fish. The highest number of species of straminipilous organisms was observed growing in the water of the BiaBa river (middle eutrophication, while the lowest number occurred in the baits of vessels with water from the Dojlidy pond (low eutrophication.Investigamos o crescimento de organismos stramenophila sobre a pele, músculos e fígado da herbívora pirapitinga (Piaractus brachypomus e da carnívora piranha (Pygocentrus nattereri em águas de três diferentes níveis de eutrofização. Dezesseis espécies de organismos stramenophila foram encontradas crescendo sobre as partes do corpo investigadas de ambas as espécies de peixes utilizadas como cobaias. O maior número de espécies foi encontrado em cobaias de espécies carnívoras (15, quando comparado com o da herbívora pirapitinga (10 espécies. A maioria das espécies de organismos stramenophila desenvolveu-se sobre a pele de ambas as espécies de peixes. O maior número de espécies de organismos stramenophila foi observado em crescimento nas águas do rio BiaBa (eutrofização do meio, enquanto o número mais baixo ocorreu em cobaias de vasos com água do lago de Dojlidy (eutrofização baixa.

  14. Do induced responses mediate the ecological interactions between the specialist herbivores and phytopathogens of an alpine plant?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Röder, Gregory; Rahier, Martine; Naisbit, Russell E

    2011-05-04

    Plants are not passive victims of the myriad attackers that rely on them for nutrition. They have a suite of physical and chemical defences, and are even able to take advantage of the enemies of their enemies. These strategies are often only deployed upon attack, so may lead to indirect interactions between herbivores and phytopathogens. In this study we test for induced responses in wild populations of an alpine plant (Adenostyles alliariae) that possesses constitutive chemical defence (pyrrolizidine alkaloids) and specialist natural enemies (two species of leaf beetle, Oreina elongata and Oreina cacaliae, and the phytopathogenic rust Uromyces cacaliae). Plants were induced in the field using chemical elicitors of the jasmonic acid (JA) and salicylic acid (SA) pathways and monitored for one month under natural conditions. There was evidence for induced resistance, with lower probability and later incidence of attack by beetles in JA-induced plants and of rust infection in SA-induced plants. We also demonstrate ecological cross-effects, with reduced fungal attack following JA-induction, and a cost of SA-induction arising from increased beetle attack. As a result, there is the potential for negative indirect effects of the beetles on the rust, while in the field the positive indirect effect of the rust on the beetles appears to be over-ridden by direct effects on plant nutritional quality. Such interactions resulting from induced susceptibility and resistance must be considered if we are to exploit plant defences for crop protection using hormone elicitors or constitutive expression. More generally, the fact that induced defences are even found in species that possess constitutively-expressed chemical defence suggests that they may be ubiquitous in higher plants.

  15. Do induced responses mediate the ecological interactions between the specialist herbivores and phytopathogens of an alpine plant?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gregory Röder

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available Plants are not passive victims of the myriad attackers that rely on them for nutrition. They have a suite of physical and chemical defences, and are even able to take advantage of the enemies of their enemies. These strategies are often only deployed upon attack, so may lead to indirect interactions between herbivores and phytopathogens. In this study we test for induced responses in wild populations of an alpine plant (Adenostyles alliariae that possesses constitutive chemical defence (pyrrolizidine alkaloids and specialist natural enemies (two species of leaf beetle, Oreina elongata and Oreina cacaliae, and the phytopathogenic rust Uromyces cacaliae. Plants were induced in the field using chemical elicitors of the jasmonic acid (JA and salicylic acid (SA pathways and monitored for one month under natural conditions. There was evidence for induced resistance, with lower probability and later incidence of attack by beetles in JA-induced plants and of rust infection in SA-induced plants. We also demonstrate ecological cross-effects, with reduced fungal attack following JA-induction, and a cost of SA-induction arising from increased beetle attack. As a result, there is the potential for negative indirect effects of the beetles on the rust, while in the field the positive indirect effect of the rust on the beetles appears to be over-ridden by direct effects on plant nutritional quality. Such interactions resulting from induced susceptibility and resistance must be considered if we are to exploit plant defences for crop protection using hormone elicitors or constitutive expression. More generally, the fact that induced defences are even found in species that possess constitutively-expressed chemical defence suggests that they may be ubiquitous in higher plants.

  16. Carnivorous plants in Micronesia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robert R. Ziemer

    1988-01-01

    Micronesia encompasses about 2,100 islands scattered over some 12 million sq km of the central Pacific between Hawaii and the Philippines. Only about 125 of these small islands are inhabited. The total land area of Micronesia is less than 3,200 sq km, about the size of the state of Rhode Island. The largest island is Guam, with an area of about 540 sq km. There are...

  17. Developmental and reproductive performance of a specialist herbivore depend on seasonality of, and light conditions experienced by, the host plant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Uyi, Osariyekemwen O; Zachariades, Costas; Heshula, Lelethu U; Hill, Martin P

    2018-01-01

    Host plant phenology (as influenced by seasonality) and light-mediated changes in the phenotypic and phytochemical properties of leaves have been hypothesised to equivocally influence insect herbivore performance. Here, we examined the effects of seasonality, through host plant phenology (late growth-season = autumn vs flowering-season = winter) and light environment (shade vs full-sun habitat) on the leaf characteristics of the invasive alien plant, Chromolaena odorata. In addition, the performance of a specialist folivore, Pareuchaetes insulata, feeding on leaves obtained from both shaded and full-sun habitats during autumn and winter, was evaluated over two generations. Foliar nitrogen and magnesium contents were generally higher in shaded plants with much higher levels during winter. Leaf water content was higher in shaded and in autumn plants. Total non-structural carbohydrate (TNC) and phosphorus contents did not differ as a function of season, but were higher in shaded foliage compared to full-sun leaves. Leaf toughness was noticeably higher on plants growing in full-sun during winter. With the exception of shaded leaves in autumn that supported the best performance [fastest development, heaviest pupal mass, and highest growth rate and Host Suitability Index (HSI) score], full-sun foliage in autumn surprisingly also supported an improved performance of the moth compared to shaded or full-sun leaves in winter. Our findings suggest that shaded and autumn foliage are nutritionally more suitable for the growth and reproduction of P. insulata. However, the heavier pupal mass, increased number of eggs and higher HSI score in individuals that fed on full-sun foliage in autumn compared to their counterparts that fed on shaded or full-sun foliage in winter suggest that full-sun foliage during autumn is also a suitable food source for larvae of the moth. In sum, our study demonstrates that seasonal and light-modulated changes in leaf characteristics can affect insect

  18. Response of predatory mites to a herbivore-induced plant volatile: genetic variation for context-dependent behaviour.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sznajder, Beata; Sabelis, Maurice W; Egas, Martijn

    2010-07-01

    Plants infested with herbivores release specific volatile compounds that are known to recruit natural enemies. The response of natural enemies to these volatiles may be either learned or genetically determined. We asked whether there is genetic variation in the response of the predatory mite Phytoseiulus persimilis to methyl salicylate (MeSa). MeSa is a volatile compound consistently produced by plants being attacked by the two-spotted spider mite, the prey of P. persimilis. We predicted that predators express genetically determined responses during long-distance migration where previously learned associations may have less value. Additionally, we asked whether these responses depend on odors from uninfested plants as a background to MeSa. To infer a genetic basis, we analyzed the variation in response to MeSa among iso-female lines of P. persimilis by using choice-tests that involved either (1) MeSa presented as a single compound or (2) MeSa with background-odor from uninfested lima bean plants. These tests were conducted for starved and satiated predators, i.e., two physiological states, one that approximates migration and another that mimics local patch exploration. We found variation among iso-female lines in the responses to MeSa, thus showing genetic variation for this behavior. The variation was more pronounced in the starved predators, thus indicating that P. persimilis relies on innate preferences when migrating. Background volatiles of uninfested plants changed the predators' responses to MeSa in a manner that depended on physiological state and iso-female line. Thus, it is possible to select for context-dependent behavioral responses of natural enemies to plant volatiles.

  19. Developmental and reproductive performance of a specialist herbivore depend on seasonality of, and light conditions experienced by, the host plant.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Osariyekemwen O Uyi

    Full Text Available Host plant phenology (as influenced by seasonality and light-mediated changes in the phenotypic and phytochemical properties of leaves have been hypothesised to equivocally influence insect herbivore performance. Here, we examined the effects of seasonality, through host plant phenology (late growth-season = autumn vs flowering-season = winter and light environment (shade vs full-sun habitat on the leaf characteristics of the invasive alien plant, Chromolaena odorata. In addition, the performance of a specialist folivore, Pareuchaetes insulata, feeding on leaves obtained from both shaded and full-sun habitats during autumn and winter, was evaluated over two generations. Foliar nitrogen and magnesium contents were generally higher in shaded plants with much higher levels during winter. Leaf water content was higher in shaded and in autumn plants. Total non-structural carbohydrate (TNC and phosphorus contents did not differ as a function of season, but were higher in shaded foliage compared to full-sun leaves. Leaf toughness was noticeably higher on plants growing in full-sun during winter. With the exception of shaded leaves in autumn that supported the best performance [fastest development, heaviest pupal mass, and highest growth rate and Host Suitability Index (HSI score], full-sun foliage in autumn surprisingly also supported an improved performance of the moth compared to shaded or full-sun leaves in winter. Our findings suggest that shaded and autumn foliage are nutritionally more suitable for the growth and reproduction of P. insulata. However, the heavier pupal mass, increased number of eggs and higher HSI score in individuals that fed on full-sun foliage in autumn compared to their counterparts that fed on shaded or full-sun foliage in winter suggest that full-sun foliage during autumn is also a suitable food source for larvae of the moth. In sum, our study demonstrates that seasonal and light-modulated changes in leaf characteristics can

  20. Powdery mildew suppresses herbivore-induced plant volatiles and interferes with parasitoid attraction in Brassica rapa

    Science.gov (United States)

    The co-occurrence of different antagonists on a plant can greatly affect infochemicals with ecological consequences for higher trophic levels. Here we investigated how the presence of a plant pathogen, the powdery mildew Erysiphe cruciferarum, on Brassica rapa affects 1) plant volatiles emitted in r...

  1. Digest: Plants adapt under attack: genotypic selection and phenotypic plasticity under herbivore pressure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hawkins, Nichola J

    2018-03-31

    Plant species adapt to changing environmental conditions through phenotypic plasticity and natural selection. Agrawal et al. (2018) found that dandelions responded to the presence of insect pests by producing higher levels of defensive compounds. This defensive response resulted both from phenotypic plasticity, with individual plants' defenses triggered by insect attack, and from evolution by natural selection acting on genetic variation in the plant population. © 2018 The Author(s). Evolution © 2018 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  2. Herbivore handling of a plant's trichome: the case of Heliconius charithonia (L.) (Lepidoptera: Nymphalidae) and Passiflora lobata (Killip) Hutch. (Passifloraceae)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cardoso, Marcio Z. [Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Norte (UFRN), Natal, RN (Brazil). Centro de Biociencias. Dept. de Botanica, Ecologia e Zoologia]. E-mail: mzc@cb.ufrn.br

    2008-05-15

    Trichomes reduce herbivore attack on plants by physically and/or chemically inhibiting movement or other activities. Despite evidence that herbivores are negatively affected by trichomes there also reports of insect counter-adaptations that circumvent the plant's defense. This paper reports on a study that investigated the likely mechanisms employed by larvae of the nymphalid butterfly, Heliconius charithonia (L.), that allow it to feed on a host that is presumably protected by hooked trichomes (Passiflora lobata (Killip) Hutch). Evidence were gathered using data from direct observations of larval movement and behavior, faeces analysis, scanning electron microscopy of plant surface and experimental analysis of larval movement on plants with and without trichomes (manually removed). The latter involved a comparison with a non specialist congener, Heliconius pachinus Salvin. Observations showed that H. charithonia larvae are capable of freeing themselves from entrapment on trichome tips by physical force. Moreover, wandering larvae lay silk mats on the trichomes and remove their tips by biting. In fact, trichome tips were found in the faeces. Experimental removal of trichomes aided in the movement of the non specialist but had no noticeable effect on the specialist larvae. These results support the suggestion that trichomes are capable of deterring a non specialist herbivore (H. pachinus). The precise mechanisms that allow the success of H. charithonia are not known, but I suggest that a blend of behavioral as well as physical resistance mechanisms is involved. Future studies should ascertain whether larval integument provides physical resistance to trichomes. (author)

  3. Influence of host plants on sexual communication in the herbivorous bug Lygocoris pabulinus

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Groot, A.T.; Visser, J.H.

    2001-01-01

    Host plant volatiles may be involved in the sexual communication of insects in several ways. In the pheromone-producing sex, these volatiles may affect pheromone production or release and, in the receptive sex, plant volatiles may have a synergistic effect on the attraction to sex pheromone. We

  4. Drought stress affects plant metabolites and herbivore preference but not host location by its parasitoids

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Weldegergis, B.T.; Zhu, F.; Poelman, E.H.; Dicke, M.

    2015-01-01

    One of the main abiotic stresses that strongly affects plant survival and the primary cause of crop loss around the world is drought. Drought stress leads to sequential morphological, physiological, biochemical and molecular changes that can have severe effects on plant growth, development and

  5. Search path of a fossorial herbivore, Geomys bursarius, foraging in structurally complex plant communities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andersen, Douglas C.

    1990-01-01

    The influence of habitat patchiness and unpalatable plants on the search path of the plains pocket gopher (Geomys bursarius) was examined in outdoor enclosures. Separate experiments were used to evaluate how individual animals explored (by tunnel excavation) enclosures free of plants except for one or more dense patches of a palatable plant (Daucus carota), a dense patch of an unpalatable species (Pastinaca sativa) containing a few palatable plants (D. carota), or a relatively sparse mixture of palatable (D. carota) and unpalatable (Raphanus sativus) species. Only two of eight individuals tested showed the predicted pattern of concentrating search effort in patches of palatable plants. The maintenance of relatively high levels of effort in less profitable sites may reflect the security afforded food resources by the solitary social system and fossorial lifestyle of G. bursarius. Unpalatable plants repelled animals under some conditions, but search paths in the sparsely planted mixed-species treatment suggest animals can use visual or other cues to orient excavations. Evidence supporting area-restricted search was weak. More information about the use of visual cues by G. bursarius and the influence of experience on individual search mode is needed for refining current models of foraging behavior in this species.

  6. Why elephant have trunks and giraffe long tongues: how plants shape large herbivore mouth morphology

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pretorius, Y.; Boer, de W.F.; Kortekaas, K.; Wijngaarden, van M.; Grant, R.C.; Kohi, E.M.; Mwakiwa, E.; Slotow, R.; Prins, H.H.T.

    2016-01-01

    We investigated whether mass and morphological spatial patterns in plants possibly induced the development of enlarged soft mouth parts in especially megaherbivores. We used power functions and geometric principles to explore allometric relationships of both morphological and foraging

  7. Interactions between invasive plants and insect herbivores: A plea for a multitrophic perspective

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Harvey, J.A.; Bukovinszky, T.; Van der Putten, W.H.

    2010-01-01

    Invasive species represent one of the most important threats to biodiversity worldwide, with consequences for ecosystem functioning and the delivery of important ecological services to society. Several hypotheses have been generated to explain the success of exotic plants in their new ranges, with

  8. Genetic engineering of plant volatile terpenoids: effects on a herbivore, a predator and a parasitoid

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kos, M.; Houshyani, B.; Overeem, A.J.; Bouwmeester, H.J.; Weldegergis, B.T.; van Loon, J.J.A.; Dicke, M.; Vet, L.E.M.

    2013-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Most insect-resistant transgenic crops employ toxins to control pests. A novel approach is to enhance the effectiveness of natural enemies by genetic engineering of the biosynthesis of volatile organic compounds (VOCs). Before the commercialisation of such transgenic plants can be

  9. Interactions between invasive plants and insect herbivores: a plea for a multitrophic perspective

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Harvey, J.A.; Bukovinszky, T.; Putten, van der W.H.

    2010-01-01

    Invasive species represent one of the most important threats to biodiversity worldwide, with consequences for ecosystem functioning and the delivery of important ecological services to society. Several hypotheses have been generated to explain the success of exotic plants in their new ranges, with

  10. Drought stress promotes the colonization success of a herbivorous mite that manipulates plant defenses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ximénez-Embún, Miguel G; Glas, Joris J; Ortego, Felix; Alba, Juan M; Castañera, Pedro; Kant, Merijn R

    2017-12-01

    Climate change is expected to bring longer periods of drought and this may affect the plant's ability to resist pests. We assessed if water deficit affects the tomato russet mite (TRM; Aculops lycopersici), a key tomato-pest. TRM thrives on tomato by suppressing the plant's jamonate defenses while these defenses typically are modulated by drought stress. We observed that the TRM population grows faster and causes more damage on drought-stressed plants. To explain this observation we measured several nutrients, phytohormones, defense-gene expression and the activity of defensive proteins in plants with or without drought stress or TRM. TRM increased the levels of total protein and several free amino acids. It also promoted the SA-response and upregulated the accumulation of jasmonates but down-regulated the downstream marker genes while promoting the activity of cysteine-but not serine-protease inhibitors, polyphenol oxidase and of peroxidase (POD). Drought stress, in turn, retained the down regulation of JA-marker genes and reduced the activity of serine protease inhibitors and POD, and altered the levels of some free-amino acids. When combined, drought stress antagonized the accumulation of POD and JA by TRM and synergized accumulation of free sugars and SA. Our data show that drought stress interacts with pest-induced primary and secondary metabolic changes and promotes pest performance.

  11. Herbivore derived fatty acid-amides elicit reactive oxygen species burst in plants

    Science.gov (United States)

    The formation of a reactive oxygen species (ROS) burst is a central response of plants to many forms of stress including pathogen attack, several abiotic stresses, damage and insect infestation. These ROS act as a direct defense as well as signaling and regulatory molecules. Perception of microbe or...

  12. Winter climate and plant productivity predict abundances of small herbivores in central Europe

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Tkadlec, Emil; Zbořil, J.; Losík, J.; Gregor, P.; Lisická, L.

    2006-01-01

    Roč. 32, č. 2 (2006), s. 99-108 ISSN 0936-577X R&D Projects: GA ČR GA206/04/2003 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60930519 Keywords : climate effects * common vole * European hare * NAO * plant productivity * crop yield Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 1.519, year: 2006 http://www.int-res.com/articles/cr_oa/c032p099.pdf

  13. Predators induce interspecific herbivore competition for food in refuge space

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pallini, A.; Janssen, A.; Sabelis, M.W.

    1998-01-01

    Resource competition among herbivorous arthropods has long been viewed as unimportant because herbivore populations are controlled by predators. Although recently resurrected as an organizing force in arthropod communities on plants, there is still general agreement that resource competition among

  14. How predictable are the behavioral responses of insects to herbivore induced changes in plants? Responses of two congeneric thrips to induced cotton plants.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rehan Silva

    Full Text Available Changes in plants following insect attack are referred to as induced responses. These responses are widely viewed as a form of defence against further insect attack. In the current study we explore whether it is possible to make generalizations about induced plant responses given the unpredictability and variability observed in insect-plant interactions. Experiments were conducted to test for consistency in the responses of two congeneric thrips, Frankliniella schultzei Trybom and Frankliniella occidentalis Pergrande (Thysanoptera: Thripidae to cotton seedlings (Gossypium hirsutum Linneaus (Malvales: Malvaceae damaged by various insect herbivores. In dual-choice experiments that compared intact and damaged cotton seedlings, F. schultzei was attracted to seedlings damaged by Helicoverpa armigera (Hübner (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae, Tetranychus urticae (Koch (Trombidiforms: Tetranychidae, Tenebrio molitor Linnaeus (Coleoptera: Tenebrionidae, F. schultzei and F. occidentalis but not to mechanically damaged seedlings. In similar tests, F. occidentalis was attracted to undamaged cotton seedlings when simultaneously exposed to seedlings damaged by H. armigera, T. molitor or F. occidentalis. However, when exposed to F. schultzei or T. urticae damaged plants, F. occidentalis was more attracted towards damaged plants. A quantitative relationship was also apparent, F. schultzei showed increased attraction to damaged seedlings as the density of T. urticae or F. schultzei increased. In contrast, although F. occidentalis demonstrated increased attraction to plants damaged by higher densities of T. urticae, there was a negative relationship between attraction and the density of damaging conspecifics. Both species showed greater attraction to T. urticae damaged seedlings than to seedlings damaged by conspecifics. Results demonstrate that the responses of both species of thrips were context dependent, making generalizations difficult to formulate.

  15. Plant species' origin predicts dominance and response to nutrient enrichment and herbivores in global grasslands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seabloom, Eric W.; Borer, Elizabeth T.; Buckley, Yvonne M.; Cleland, Elsa E.; Davies, Kendi F.; Firn, Jennifer; Harpole, W. Stanley; Hautier, Yann; Lind, Eric M.; MacDougall, Andrew S.; Orrock, John L.; Prober, Suzanne M.; Adler, Peter B.; Anderson, T. Michael; Bakker, Jonathan D.; Biederman, Lori A.; Blumenthal, Dana M.; Brown, Cynthia S.; Brudvig, Lars A.; Cadotte, Marc; Chu, Chengjin; Cottingham, Kathryn L.; Crawley, Michael J.; Damschen, Ellen I.; Dantonio, Carla M.; DeCrappeo, Nicole M.; Du, Guozhen; Fay, Philip A.; Frater, Paul; Gruner, Daniel S.; Hagenah, Nicole; Hector, Andy; Hillebrand, Helmut; Hofmockel, Kirsten S.; Humphries, Hope C.; Jin, Virginia L.; Kay, Adam; Kirkman, Kevin P.; Klein, Julia A.; Knops, Johannes M. H.; La Pierre, Kimberly J.; Ladwig, Laura; Lambrinos, John G.; Li, Qi; Li, Wei; Marushia, Robin; McCulley, Rebecca L.; Melbourne, Brett A.; Mitchell, Charles E.; Moore, Joslin L.; Morgan, John; Mortensen, Brent; O'Halloran, Lydia R.; Pyke, David A.; Risch, Anita C.; Sankaran, Mahesh; Schuetz, Martin; Simonsen, Anna; Smith, Melinda D.; Stevens, Carly J.; Sullivan, Lauren; Wolkovich, Elizabeth; Wragg, Peter D.; Wright, Justin; Yang, Louie

    2015-01-01

    Exotic species dominate many communities; however the functional significance of species' biogeographic origin remains highly contentious. This debate is fuelled in part by the lack of globally replicated, systematic data assessing the relationship between species provenance, function and response to perturbations. We examined the abundance of native and exotic plant species at 64 grasslands in 13 countries, and at a subset of the sites we experimentally tested native and exotic species responses to two fundamental drivers of invasion, mineral nutrient supplies and vertebrate herbivory. Exotic species are six times more likely to dominate communities than native species. Furthermore, while experimental nutrient addition increases the cover and richness of exotic species, nutrients decrease native diversity and cover. Native and exotic species also differ in their response to vertebrate consumer exclusion. These results suggest that species origin has functional significance, and that eutrophication will lead to increased exotic dominance in grasslands. PMID:26173623

  16. How insects overcome two-component plant chemical defence: plant β-glucosidases as the main target for herbivore adaptation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pentzold, Stefan; Zagrobelny, Mika; Rook, Fred; Bak, Søren

    2014-08-01

    Insect herbivory is often restricted by glucosylated plant chemical defence compounds that are activated by plant β-glucosidases to release toxic aglucones upon plant tissue damage. Such two-component plant defences are widespread in the plant kingdom and examples of these classes of compounds are alkaloid, benzoxazinoid, cyanogenic and iridoid glucosides as well as glucosinolates and salicinoids. Conversely, many insects have evolved a diversity of counteradaptations to overcome this type of constitutive chemical defence. Here we discuss that such counter-adaptations occur at different time points, before and during feeding as well as during digestion, and at several levels such as the insects’ feeding behaviour, physiology and metabolism. Insect adaptations frequently circumvent or counteract the activity of the plant β-glucosidases, bioactivating enzymes that are a key element in the plant’s two-component chemical defence. These adaptations include host plant choice, non-disruptive feeding guilds and various physiological adaptations as well as metabolic enzymatic strategies of the insect’s digestive system. Furthermore, insect adaptations often act in combination, may exist in both generalists and specialists, and can act on different classes of defence compounds. We discuss how generalist and specialist insects appear to differ in their ability to use these different types of adaptations: in generalists, adaptations are often inducible, whereas in specialists they are often constitutive. Future studies are suggested to investigate in detail how insect adaptations act in combination to overcome plant chemical defences and to allow ecologically relevant conclusions.

  17. An Endoparasitoid Avoids Hyperparasitism by Manipulating Immobile Host Herbivore to Modify Host Plant Morphology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fujii, Tomohisa; Matsuo, Kazunori; Abe, Yoshihisa; Yukawa, Junichi; Tokuda, Makoto

    2014-01-01

    Many parasitic organisms have an ability to manipulate their hosts to increase their own fitness. In parasitoids, behavioral changes of mobile hosts to avoid or protect against predation and hyperparasitism have been intensively studied, but host manipulation by parasitoids associated with endophytic or immobile hosts has seldom been investigated. We examined the interactions between a gall inducer Masakimyia pustulae (Diptera: Cecidomyiidae) and its parasitoids. This gall midge induces dimorphic leaf galls, thick and thin types, on Euonymus japonicus (Celastraceae). Platygaster sp. was the most common primary parasitoid of M. pustulae. In galls attacked by Platygaster sp., whole gall thickness as well as thicknesses of upper and lower gall wall was significantly larger than unparasitized galls, regardless of the gall types, in many localities. In addition, localities and tree individuals significantly affected the thickness of gall. Galls attacked by Platygaster sp. were seldom hyperparasitized in the two gall types. These results strongly suggest that Platygaster sp. manipulates the host plant's development to avoid hyperparasitism by thickening galls. PMID:25033216

  18. Insect Attraction versus Plant Defense: Young Leaves High in Glucosinolates Stimulate Oviposition by a Specialist Herbivore despite Poor Larval Survival due to High Saponin Content

    Science.gov (United States)

    Badenes-Perez, Francisco R.; Gershenzon, Jonathan; Heckel, David G.

    2014-01-01

    Glucosinolates are plant secondary metabolites used in plant defense. For insects specialized on Brassicaceae, such as the diamondback moth, Plutella xylostella L. (Lepidoptera: Plutellidae), glucosinolates act as “fingerprints” that are essential in host plant recognition. Some plants in the genus Barbarea (Brassicaceae) contain, besides glucosinolates, saponins that act as feeding deterrents for P. xylostella larvae, preventing their survival on the plant. Two-choice oviposition tests were conducted to study the preference of P. xylostella among Barbarea leaves of different size within the same plant. P. xylostella laid more eggs per leaf area on younger leaves compared to older ones. Higher concentrations of glucosinolates and saponins were found in younger leaves than in older ones. In 4-week-old plants, saponins were present in true leaves, while cotyledons contained little or no saponins. When analyzing the whole foliage of the plant, the content of glucosinolates and saponins also varied significantly in comparisons among plants that were 4, 8, and 12 weeks old. In Barbarea plants and leaves of different ages, there was a positive correlation between glucosinolate and saponin levels. This research shows that, in Barbarea plants, ontogenetical changes in glucosinolate and saponin content affect both attraction and resistance to P. xylostella. Co-occurrence of a high content of glucosinolates and saponins in the Barbarea leaves that are most valuable for the plant, but are also the most attractive to P. xylostella, provides protection against this specialist herbivore, which oviposition behavior on Barbarea seems to be an evolutionary mistake. PMID:24752069

  19. Insect attraction versus plant defense: young leaves high in glucosinolates stimulate oviposition by a specialist herbivore despite poor larval survival due to high saponin content.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Francisco R Badenes-Perez

    Full Text Available Glucosinolates are plant secondary metabolites used in plant defense. For insects specialized on Brassicaceae, such as the diamondback moth, Plutella xylostella L. (Lepidoptera: Plutellidae, glucosinolates act as "fingerprints" that are essential in host plant recognition. Some plants in the genus Barbarea (Brassicaceae contain, besides glucosinolates, saponins that act as feeding deterrents for P. xylostella larvae, preventing their survival on the plant. Two-choice oviposition tests were conducted to study the preference of P. xylostella among Barbarea leaves of different size within the same plant. P. xylostella laid more eggs per leaf area on younger leaves compared to older ones. Higher concentrations of glucosinolates and saponins were found in younger leaves than in older ones. In 4-week-old plants, saponins were present in true leaves, while cotyledons contained little or no saponins. When analyzing the whole foliage of the plant, the content of glucosinolates and saponins also varied significantly in comparisons among plants that were 4, 8, and 12 weeks old. In Barbarea plants and leaves of different ages, there was a positive correlation between glucosinolate and saponin levels. This research shows that, in Barbarea plants, ontogenetical changes in glucosinolate and saponin content affect both attraction and resistance to P. xylostella. Co-occurrence of a high content of glucosinolates and saponins in the Barbarea leaves that are most valuable for the plant, but are also the most attractive to P. xylostella, provides protection against this specialist herbivore, which oviposition behavior on Barbarea seems to be an evolutionary mistake.

  20. Evolution of nutrient uptake reveals a trade-off in the ecological stoichiometry of plant-herbivore interactions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Branco, P.; Stomp, M.; Egas, M.; Huisman, J.

    2010-01-01

    Nutrient limitation determines the primary production and species composition of many ecosystems. Here we apply an adaptive dynamics approach to investigate evolution of the ecological stoichiometry of primary producers and its implications for plant‐herbivore interactions. The model predicts a

  1. Nectar-providing plants enhance the energetic state of herbivores as well as their parasitoids under field conditions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Winkler, K.; Wackers, F.; Pinto, D.M.

    2009-01-01

    1. The use of flowering vegetation has been widely advocated as a strategy for providing parasitoids and predators with nectar and pollen. However, their herbivorous hosts and prey may exploit floral food sources as well. 2. Previous laboratory studies have shown that not all flower species are

  2. Belowground Plant–Herbivore Interactions Vary among Climate-Driven Range-Expanding Plant Species with Different Degrees of Novel Chemistry

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rutger A. Wilschut

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available An increasing number of studies report plant range expansions to higher latitudes and altitudes in response to global warming. However, consequences for interactions with other species in the novel ranges are poorly understood. Here, we examine how range-expanding plant species interact with root-feeding nematodes from the new range. Root-feeding nematodes are ubiquitous belowground herbivores that may impact the structure and composition of natural vegetation. Because of their ecological novelty, we hypothesized that range-expanding plant species will be less suitable hosts for root-feeding nematodes than native congeneric plant species. In greenhouse and lab trials we compared nematode preference and performance of two root-feeding nematode species between range-expanding plant species and their congeneric natives. In order to understand differences in nematode preferences, we compared root volatile profiles of all range-expanders and congeneric natives. Nematode preferences and performances differed substantially among the pairs of range-expanders and natives. The range-expander that had the most unique volatile profile compared to its related native was unattractive and a poor host for nematodes. Other range-expanding plant species that differed less in root chemistry from native congeners, also differed less in nematode attraction and performance. We conclude that the three climate-driven range-expanding plant species studied varied considerably in their chemical novelty compared to their congeneric natives, and therefore affected native root-feeding nematodes in species-specific ways. Our data suggest that through variation in chemical novelty, range-expanding plant species may vary in their impacts on belowground herbivores in the new range.

  3. Microarrays in ecological research: A case study of a cDNA microarray for plant-herbivore interactions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gase Klaus

    2004-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Microarray technology allows researchers to simultaneously monitor changes in the expression ratios (ERs of hundreds of genes and has thereby revolutionized most of biology. Although this technique has the potential of elucidating early stages in an organism's phenotypic response to complex ecological interactions, to date, it has not been fully incorporated into ecological research. This is partially due to a lack of simple procedures of handling and analyzing the expression ratio (ER data produced from microarrays. Results We describe an analysis of the sources of variation in ERs from 73 hybridized cDNA microarrays, each with 234 herbivory-elicited genes from the model ecological expression system, Nicotiana attenuata, using procedures that are commonly used in ecologic research. Each gene is represented by two independently labeled PCR products and each product was arrayed in quadruplicate. We present a robust method of normalizing and analyzing ERs based on arbitrary thresholds and statistical criteria, and characterize a "norm of reaction" of ERs for 6 genes (4 of known function, 2 of unknown with different ERs as determined across all analyzed arrays to provide a biologically-informed alternative to the use of arbitrary expression ratios in determining significance of expression. These gene-specific ERs and their variance (gene CV were used to calculate array-based variances (array CV, which, in turn, were used to study the effects of array age, probe cDNA quantity and quality, and quality of spotted PCR products as estimates of technical variation. Cluster analysis and a Principal Component Analysis (PCA were used to reveal associations among the transcriptional "imprints" of arrays hybridized with cDNA probes derived from mRNA from N. attenuata plants variously elicited and attacked by different herbivore species and from three congeners: N. quadrivalis, N. longiflora and N. clevelandii. Additionally, the PCA

  4. Host Plant-Herbivore-Predator Interactions in Chrysoperla carnea (Neuroptera: Chrysopidae) and Myzus persicae (Homoptera: Aphididae) on Four Plant Species Under Laboratory Conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farrokhi, Milad; Gharekhani, Gholamhossein; Iranipour, Shahzad; Hassanpour, Mahdi

    2017-12-05

    The common green lacewing, Chrysoperla carnea (Stephens) (Neuroptera: Chrysopidae), is a well-known biocontrol agent. The current study examined host plant-herbivore-predator interactions with C. carnea and Myzus persicae on four host plants (peach, almond, pepper, and potato). The experiments were carried out at 25 ± 1°C and 65 ± 5% RH at a photoperiod of 16:8 (L:D) h). Duration of the preadult growth period, adult longevity, fecundity, and population growth parameters were analyzed based on the age-stage, two-sex life table theory. The shortest and longest preadult developmental times of the predator were observed on the peach and potato, respectively. The highest and lowest predation rate, oviposition period, and male and female longevity of predator were also observed on the peach and potato, respectively. The lowest intrinsic rate of increase (r) and finite rate of increase (λ) were observed on the potato (0.1087 and 1.11 d-1, respectively) and the highest on the peach (0.1460 and 1.15 d-1, respectively). The maximum and minimum mean generation times (T) were 41.84 and 35.59 d in the potato and peach, respectively. Overall, peach was found to be a more appropriate host than the other host plants for development and predation fitness of C. carnea. These findings reveal that information on tritrophic interactions and subsequent life table evaluation of natural enemies improves integrated pest management programs. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America 2017. This work is written by (a) US Government employee(s) and is in the public domain in the US.

  5. Predators induce interspecific herbivore competition for food in refuge space

    OpenAIRE

    Pallini, A.; Janssen, A.; Sabelis, M.W.

    1998-01-01

    Resource competition among herbivorous arthropods has long been viewed as unimportant because herbivore populations are controlled by predators. Although recently resurrected as an organizing force in arthropod communities on plants, there is still general agreement that resource competition among herbivores is reduced by predators. Here we show the reverse: predators induce interspecific resource competi-tion among herbivores. We found that thrips larvae (Frankliniella occidentalis) use the ...

  6. Solar ultraviolet-B radiation affects seedling emergence, DNA integrity, plant morphology, growth rate, and attractiveness to herbivore insects in Datura ferox

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ballare, C.L.; Scopel, A.L.; Stapleton, A.E.

    1996-01-01

    To study functional relationships between the effects of solar ultraviolet-B radiation (UV0B) on different aspects of the physiology of a wild plant, we carried out exclusion experiments in the field with the summer annual Datura ferrox L. Solar UV-B incident over Buenos Aires reduced daytime seedling emergence, inhibited stem elongation and leaf expansion, and tended to reduce biomass accumulation during early growth. However, UV-B had no effect on calculated net assimilation rate. Using a monoclonal antibody specific to the cyclobutane-pyrimidine dimer (CPD), we found that plants receiving full sunlight had more CPDs per unit of DNA than plants shielded from solar UV-B, but the positive correlation between UV-B and CPD burden tended to level off at high (near solar) UV-B levels. At our field site, Datura plants were consumed by leaf beetles (Coleoptera), and the proportion of plants attacked by insects declined with the amount of UV-B received during growth. Field experiments showed that plant exposure to solar UV-B reduced the likelihood of leaf beetle attack by one-half. Our results highlight the complexities associated with scaling plant responses to solar UV-B, because they show: (a) a lack of correspondence between UV-B effects on net assimilation rate and whole-plant growth rate, (b) nonlinear UV-B dose-response curves, and (c) UV-B effects of plant attractiveness to natural herbivores. 56 refs., 7 figs

  7. Modeling trade-offs between plant fiber and toxins: a framework for quantifying risks perceived by foraging herbivores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Camp, Meghan J; Shipley, Lisa A; Johnson, Timothy R; Forbey, Jennifer Sorensen; Rachlow, Janet L; Crowell, Miranda M

    2015-12-01

    When selecting habitats, herbivores must weigh multiple risks, such as predation, starvation, toxicity, and thermal stress, forcing them to make fitness trade-offs. Here, we applied the method of paired comparisons (PC) to investigate how herbivores make trade-offs between habitat features that influence selection of food patches. The method of PC measures utility and the inverse of utility, relative risk, and makes trade-offs and indifferences explicit by forcing animals to make choices between two patches with different types of risks. Using a series of paired-choice experiments to titrate the equivalence curve and find the marginal rate of substitution for one risk over the other, we evaluated how toxin-tolerant (pygmy rabbit Brachylagus idahoensis) and fiber-tolerant (mountain cottontail rabbit Sylviagus nuttallii) herbivores differed in their hypothesized perceived risk of fiber and toxins in food. Pygmy rabbits were willing to consume nearly five times more of the toxin 1,8-cineole in their diets to avoid consuming higher levels of fiber than were mountain cottontails. Fiber posed a greater relative risk for pygmy rabbits than cottontails and cineole a greater risk for cottontails than pygmy rabbits. Our flexible modeling approach can be used to (1) quantify how animals evaluate and trade off multiple habitat attributes when the benefits and risks are difficult to quantify, and (2) integrate diverse risks that influence fitness and habitat selection into a single index of habitat value. This index potentially could be applied to landscapes to predict habitat selection across several scales.

  8. Differential Response of a Local Population of Entomopathogenic Nematodes to Non-Native Herbivore Induced Plant Volatiles (HIPV) in the Laboratory and Field.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rivera, Monique J; Rodriguez-Saona, Cesar; Alborn, Hans T; Koppenhöfer, Albrecht M

    2016-12-01

    Recent work has shown the potential for enhanced efficacy of entomopathogenic nematodes (EPN) through their attraction to herbivore induced plant volatiles. However, there has been little investigation into the utilization of these attractants in systems other than in those in which they were identified. We compared (E)-β-caryophyllene and pregeijerene in the highbush blueberry (Vaccinium corymbosum) agroecosystem in their ability to enhance the attraction of EPN to and efficacy against the system's herbivore, oriental beetle (Anomala orientalis). The relative attractiveness of (E)-β-caryophyllene and pregeijerene to a local isolate of the EPN species Steinernema glaseri was tested in a six-arm olfactometer in the laboratory to gather baseline values of attraction to the chemicals alone in sand substrate before field tests. A similar arrangement was used in a V. corymbosum field by placing six cages with assigned treatments and insect larvae with and without compound into the soil around the base of 10 plants. The cages were removed after 72 h, and insect baits were retrieved and assessed for EPN infection. The lab results indicate that in sand alone (E)-β-caryophyllene is significantly more attractive than pregeijerene to the local S. glaseri isolate Conversely, there was no difference in attractiveness in the field study, but rather, native S. glaseri were more attracted to cages with G. mellonella larvae, no larvae, and cages with the blank control and G. mellonella larvae.

  9. Tracking the elusive history of diversification in plant-herbivorous insect-parasitoid food webs: insights from figs and fig wasps.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kjellberg, Finn; Proffit, Magali

    2016-02-01

    The food webs consisting of plants, herbivorous insects and their insect parasitoids are a major component of terrestrial biodiversity. They play a central role in the functioning of all terrestrial ecosystems, and the number of species involved is mind-blowing (Nyman et al. 2015). Nevertheless, our understanding of the evolutionary and ecological determinants of their diversity is still in its infancy. In this issue of Molecular Ecology, Sutton et al. (2016) open a window into the comparative analysis of spatial genetic structuring in a set of comparable multitrophic models, involving highly species-specific interactions: figs and fig wasps. This is the first study to compare genetic structure using population genetics tools in a fig-pollinating wasp (Pleistodontes imperialis sp1) and its main parasitoid (Sycoscapter sp.A). The fig-pollinating wasp has a discontinuous spatial distribution that correlates with genetic differentiation, while the parasitoid bridges the discontinuity by parasitizing other pollinator species on the same host fig tree and presents basically no spatial genetic structure. The full implications of these results for our general understanding of plant-herbivorous insect-insect parasitoids diversification become apparent when envisioned within the framework of recent advances in fig and fig wasp biology. © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  10. Plant growth regulator-mediated anti-herbivore responses of cabbage (Brassica oleracea) against cabbage looper Trichoplusia ni Hübner (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scott, Ian M; Samara, R; Renaud, J B; Sumarah, M W

    2017-09-01

    Plant elicitors can be biological or chemical-derived stimulators of jasmonic acid (JA) or salicylic acid (SA) pathways shown to prime the defenses in many crops. Examples of chemical elicitors of the JA and SA pathways include methyl-jasmonate and 1,2,3-benzothiadiazole-7-carbothioate (BTH or the commercial plant activator Actigard 50WG, respectively). The use of specific elicitors has been observed to affect the normal interaction between JA and SA pathways causing one to be upregulated and the other to be suppressed, often, but not always, at the expense of the plant's herbivore or pathogen defenses. The objective of this study was to determine whether insects feeding on Brassica crops might be negatively affected by SA inducible defenses combined with an inhibitor of detoxification and anti-oxidant enzymes that regulate the insect response to the plant's defenses. The relative growth rate of cabbage looper Trichoplusia ni Hübner (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) fed induced cabbage Brassica oleraceae leaves with the inhibitor, quercetin, was significantly less than those fed control cabbage with and without the inhibitor. The reduced growth was related to the reduction of glutathione S-transferases (GSTs) by the combination of quercetin and increased levels of indole glucosinolates in the cabbage treated with BTH at 2.6× the recommended application rate. These findings may offer a novel combination of elicitor and synergist that can provide protection from plant disease and herbivores in cabbage and other Brassica crops. Crown Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Global atmospheric change and herbivory: Effects of elevated levels of UV-B radiation, atmospheric CO2 and temperature on boreal woody plants and their herbivores

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Veteli, T.

    2003-01-01

    The aim of this study was to assess the effects of elevated ultraviolet-B radiation (UV-B, 280- 320 nm), atmospheric CO 2 , temperature and soil nitrogen level on the growth and chemical quality of boreal deciduous woody plants and on performance of the herbivorous insects feeding on them. Eggs and larvae of Operophtera brumata (L.) (Lepidoptera, Geometridae) were subjected to elevated UV-B radiation in the laboratory. Two willow species, Salix phylicifolia L. (Salicaceae) and S. myrsinifolia Salisb., were grown in an UV-B irradiation field where the responses of both plants and their herbivorous insects were monitored. S. myrsinifolia, Betula pendula Ehrh. (Betulaceae) and B. pubescens Roth. were subjected to elevated CO 2 and temperature and different fertilisation levels in closed-top climatic chambers. To assess the indirect effects of the different treatments, the leaves of experimental willows and birches were fed to larvae of Phratora vitellinae (L.) (Coleoptera, Chrysomelidae) and adults of Agellastica alni L. in the laboratory. Elevated UV-B radiation significantly decreased the survival and performance of eggs and larvae of O. brumata. It also increased concentrations of some flavonoids and phenolic acids in S. myrsinifolia and S. phylicifolia, while the low-UV-B- absorbing phenolics, e. g. condensed tannins, gallic acid derivatives and salicylates, either decreased or remained unaffected. Both the height growth and biomass of one S. phylicifolia clone was sensitive to elevated levels of UV-B radiation. Abundance of adults and larvae of a willow- feeding leaf beetle, P. vitellinae, was increased under elevated UV-B; but this did not lead to increased leaf damage on the host plants. There were no significant differences in performance of the larvae feeding on differentially treated willow leaves, but adult A. alni preferred UV-B-treated leaves to ambient control leaves. Elevated CO 2 and temperature significantly increased the height growth of S

  12. Learning in Insect Pollinators and Herbivores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Patricia L; Agrawal, Anurag A

    2017-01-31

    The relationship between plants and insects is influenced by insects' behavioral decisions during foraging and oviposition. In mutualistic pollinators and antagonistic herbivores, past experience (learning) affects such decisions, which ultimately can impact plant fitness. The higher levels of dietary generalism in pollinators than in herbivores may be an explanation for the differences in learning seen between these two groups. Generalist pollinators experience a high level of environmental variation, which we suggest favors associative learning. Larval herbivores employ habituation and sensitization-strategies useful in their less variable environments. Exceptions to these patterns based on habitats, mobility, and life history provide critical tests of current theory. Relevant plant traits should be under selection to be easily learned and remembered in pollinators and difficult to learn in herbivores. Insect learning thereby has the potential to have an important, yet largely unexplored, role in plant-insect coevolution.

  13. Carnivore specific bone bioapatite and collagen carbon isotope fractionations: Case studies of modern and fossil grey wolf populations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fox-Dobbs, K.; Wheatley, P. V.; Koch, P. L.

    2006-12-01

    Stable isotope analyses of modern and fossil biogenic tissues are routinely used to reconstruct present and past vertebrate foodwebs. Accurate isotopic dietary reconstructions require a consumer and tissue specific understanding of how isotopes are sorted, or fractionated, between trophic levels. In this project we address the need for carnivore specific isotope variables derived from populations that are ecologically well- characterized. Specifically, we investigate the trophic difference in carbon isotope values between mammalian carnivore (wolf) bone bioapatite and herbivore (prey) bone bioapatite. We also compare bone bioapatite and collagen carbon isotope values collected from the same individuals. We analyzed bone specimens from two modern North American grey wolf (Canis lupus) populations (Isle Royale National Park, Michigan and Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming), and the ungulate herbivores that are their primary prey (moose and elk, respectively). Because the diets of both wolf populations are essentially restricted to a single prey species, there were no confounding effects due to carnivore diet variability. We measured a trophic difference of approximately -1.3 permil between carnivore (lower value) and herbivore (higher value) bone bioapatite carbon isotope values, and an average inter-tissue difference of 5.1 permil between carnivore bone collagen (lower value) and bioapatite (higher value) carbon isotope values. Both of these isotopic differences differ from previous estimates derived from a suite of African carnivores; our carnivore-herbivore bone bioapatite carbon isotope spacing is smaller (-1.3 vs. -4.0 permil), and our carnivore collagen-bioapatite carbon difference is larger (5.1 vs. 3.0 permil). These discrepancies likely result from comparing values measured from a single hypercarnivore (wolf) to average values calculated from several carnivore species, some of which are insectivorous or partly omnivorous. The trophic and inter

  14. Guild-specific patterns of species richness and host specialization in plant-herbivore food webs from a tropical forest

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Novotný, Vojtěch; Miller, S. E.; Baje, L.; Balagawi, S.; Basset, Y.; Čížek, Lukáš; Craft, K. J.; Dem, F.; Drew, R. A. I.; Hulcr, J.; Lepš, Jan; Lewis, O. T.; Pokon, R.; Stewart, A. J. A.; Samuelson, G. A.; Weiblen, G. D.

    2010-01-01

    Roč. 79, č. 6 (2010), s. 1193-1203 ISSN 0021-8790 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA206/09/0115; GA ČR GD206/08/H044; GA ČR GAP505/10/0673; GA AV ČR IAA600960712; GA MŠk LC06073; GA MŠk ME09082 Grant - others:National Science Foundation(US) DEB 9628840; National Science Foundation(US) DEB 9707928; National Science Foundation(US) DEB 0211591 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50070508 Keywords : apparent competition * effective specialization * herbivorous guild Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 4.457, year: 2010

  15. Feeding on Host Plants with Different Concentrations and Structures of Pyrrolizidine Alkaloids Impacts the Chemical-Defense Effectiveness of a Specialist Herbivore.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martins, Carlos H Z; Cunha, Beatriz P; Solferini, Vera N; Trigo, José R

    2015-01-01

    Sequestration of chemical defenses from host plants is a strategy widely used by herbivorous insects to avoid predation. Larvae of the arctiine moth Utetheisa ornatrix feeding on unripe seeds and leaves of many species of Crotalaria (Leguminosae) sequester N-oxides of pyrrolizidine alkaloids (PAs) from these host plants, and transfer them to adults through the pupal stage. PAs confer protection against predation on all life stages of U. ornatrix. As U. ornatrix also uses other Crotalaria species as host plants, we evaluated whether the PA chemical defense against predation is independent of host plant use. We fed larvae from hatching to pupation with either leaves or seeds of one of eight Crotalaria species (C. incana, C. juncea, C. micans, C. ochroleuca, C. pallida, C. paulina, C. spectabilis, and C. vitellina), and tested if adults were preyed upon or released by the orb-weaving spider Nephila clavipes. We found that the protection against the spider was more effective in adults whose larvae fed on seeds, which had a higher PA concentration than leaves. The exceptions were adults from larvae fed on C. paulina, C. spectabilis and C. vitellina leaves, which showed high PA concentrations. With respect to the PA profile, we describe for the first time insect-PAs in U. ornatrix. These PAs, biosynthesized from the necine base retronecine of plant origin, or monocrotaline- and senecionine-type PAs sequestered from host plants, were equally active in moth chemical defense, in a dose-dependent manner. These results are also partially explained by host plant phylogeny, since PAs of the host plants do have a phylogenetic signal (clades with high and low PA concentrations in leaves) which is reflected in the adult defense.

  16. Feeding on Host Plants with Different Concentrations and Structures of Pyrrolizidine Alkaloids Impacts the Chemical-Defense Effectiveness of a Specialist Herbivore.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carlos H Z Martins

    Full Text Available Sequestration of chemical defenses from host plants is a strategy widely used by herbivorous insects to avoid predation. Larvae of the arctiine moth Utetheisa ornatrix feeding on unripe seeds and leaves of many species of Crotalaria (Leguminosae sequester N-oxides of pyrrolizidine alkaloids (PAs from these host plants, and transfer them to adults through the pupal stage. PAs confer protection against predation on all life stages of U. ornatrix. As U. ornatrix also uses other Crotalaria species as host plants, we evaluated whether the PA chemical defense against predation is independent of host plant use. We fed larvae from hatching to pupation with either leaves or seeds of one of eight Crotalaria species (C. incana, C. juncea, C. micans, C. ochroleuca, C. pallida, C. paulina, C. spectabilis, and C. vitellina, and tested if adults were preyed upon or released by the orb-weaving spider Nephila clavipes. We found that the protection against the spider was more effective in adults whose larvae fed on seeds, which had a higher PA concentration than leaves. The exceptions were adults from larvae fed on C. paulina, C. spectabilis and C. vitellina leaves, which showed high PA concentrations. With respect to the PA profile, we describe for the first time insect-PAs in U. ornatrix. These PAs, biosynthesized from the necine base retronecine of plant origin, or monocrotaline- and senecionine-type PAs sequestered from host plants, were equally active in moth chemical defense, in a dose-dependent manner. These results are also partially explained by host plant phylogeny, since PAs of the host plants do have a phylogenetic signal (clades with high and low PA concentrations in leaves which is reflected in the adult defense.

  17. Exclusion of brown lemmings reduces vascular plant cover and biomass in Arctic coastal tundra: resampling of a 50 + year herbivore exclosure experiment near Barrow, Alaska

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Johnson, D R; Lara, M J; Tweedie, C E; Shaver, G R; Batzli, G O; Shaw, J D

    2011-01-01

    To determine the role lemmings play in structuring plant communities and their contribution to the 'greening of the Arctic', we measured plant cover and biomass in 50 + year old lemming exclosures and control plots in the coastal tundra near Barrow, Alaska. The response of plant functional types to herbivore exclusion varied among land cover types. In general, the abundance of lichens and bryophytes increased with the exclusion of lemmings, whereas graminoids decreased, although the magnitude of these responses varied among land cover types. These results suggest that sustained lemming activity promotes a higher biomass of vascular plant functional types than would be expected without their presence and highlights the importance of considering herbivory when interpreting patterns of greening in the Arctic. In light of the rapid environmental change ongoing in the Arctic and the potential regional to global implications of this change, further exploration regarding the long-term influence of arvicoline rodents on ecosystem function (e.g. carbon and energy balance) should be considered a research priority.

  18. Climate change and genetically modified insecticidal plants. Plant-herbivore interactions and secondary chemistry of Bt Cry1Ac-toxin producing oilseed rape (Brassica napus L.) under elevated CO{sub 2} or O{sub 3}

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Himanen, S.

    2008-07-01

    Transgenic insect-resistant plants producing Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) crystalline endotoxins are the first commercial applications of genetically modified crops and their use has steadily expanded over the last ten years. Together with the expanding agricultural use of transgenic crops, climate change is predicted to be among the major factors affecting agriculture in the coming years. Plants, herbivores and insects of higher trophic levels are all predicted to be affected by the current atmospheric climate change. However, only very few studies to date have addressed the sustained use and herbivore interactions of Bt-producing plants under the influence of these abiotic factors. The main objective of this study was to comparatively assess the performance of a Bt Cry1Ac toxin-producing oilseed rape line and its non-transgenic parent line in terms of vegetative growth and allocation to secondary defence compounds (glucosinolates and volatile terpenoids), and the performance of Bt-target and nontarget insect herbivores as well as tritrophic interaction functioning on these lines. For this, several growth chamber experiments with vegetative stage non-Bt and Bt plants facing exposures to doubled atmospheric CO{sub 2} level alone or together with increased temperature and different regimes of elevated O{sub 3} were conducted. The main hypothesis of this work was that Bt-transgenic plants have reduced performance or allocation to secondary compounds due to the cost of producing Bt toxin under changed abiotic environments. The Bt-transgenic oilseed rape line exhibited slightly delayed vegetative growth and had increased nitrogen and reduced carbon content compared to the non-transgenic parent line, but the physiological responses (i.e. biomass gain and photosynthesis) of the plant lines to CO{sub 2} and O{sub 3} enhancements were equal. Two aphid species, non-susceptible to Bt Cry1Ac, showed equal performance and reproduction on both plant lines under elevated CO{sub 2

  19. Effects of elevated temperature and CO2 on aboveground-belowground systems: a case study with plants, their mutualistic bacteria and root / shoot herbivores

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James Michael William Ryalls

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available Interactions between above- and belowground herbivores have been prominent in the field of aboveground-belowground ecology from the outset, although little is known about how climate change affects these organisms when they share the same plant. Additionally, the interactive effects of multiple factors associated with climate change such as elevated temperature (eT and elevated atmospheric carbon dioxide (eCO2 are untested. We investigated how eT and eCO2 affected larval development of the lucerne weevil (Sitona discoideus and colonisation by the pea aphid (Acyrthosiphon pisum, on three cultivars of a common host plant, lucerne (Medicago sativa. Sitona discoideus larvae feed on root nodules housing N2-fixing rhizobial bacteria, allowing us to test the effects of eT and eCO2 on three trophic levels. Moreover, we assessed the influence of these factors on plant growth. eT increased plant growth rate initially (6, 8 and 10 weeks after sowing, with cultivar ‘Sequel’ achieving the greatest height. Inoculation with aphids, however, reduced plant growth at week 14. eT severely reduced root nodulation by 43%, whereas eCO2 promoted nodulation by 56%, but only at ambient temperatures. Weevil presence increased net root biomass and nodulation, by 31 and 45%, respectively, showing an overcompensatory plant growth response. Effects of eT and eCO2 on root nodulation were mirrored by weevil larval development; eT and eCO2 reduced and increased larval development, respectively. Contrary to expectations, aphid colonisation was unaffected by eT or eCO2, but there was a near-significant 10% reduction in colonisation rates on plants with weevils present belowground. The contrasting effects of eT and eCO2 on weevils potentially occurred through changes in root nodulation patterns.

  20. Carnivores of Syria

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marco Masseti

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this research is to outline the local occurrence and recent distribution of carnivores in Syria (Syrian Arab Republic in order to offer a starting point for future studies. The species of large dimensions, such as the Asiatic lion, the Caspian tiger, the Asiatic cheetah, and the Syrian brown bear, became extinct in historical times, the last leopard being reputed to have been killed in 1963 on the Alauwit Mountains (Al Nusyriain Mountains. The checklist of the extant Syrian carnivores amounts to 15 species, which are essentially referable to 4 canids, 5 mustelids, 4 felids – the sand catbeen reported only recently for the first time – one hyaenid, and one herpestid. The occurrence of the Blandford fox has yet to be confirmed. This paper is almost entirely the result of a series of field surveys carried out by the author mainly between 1989 and 1995, integrated by data from several subsequent reports and sightings by other authors.

  1. Natural history-driven, plant-mediated RNAi-based study reveals CYP6B46's role in a nicotine-mediated antipredator herbivore defense.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kumar, Pavan; Pandit, Sagar S; Steppuhn, Anke; Baldwin, Ian T

    2014-01-28

    Manduca sexta (Ms) larvae are known to efficiently excrete ingested nicotine when feeding on their nicotine-producing native hostplant, Nicotiana attenuata. Here we describe how ingested nicotine is co-opted for larval defense by a unique mechanism. Plant-mediated RNAi was used to silence a midgut-expressed, nicotine-induced cytochrome P450 6B46 (CYP6B46) in larvae consuming transgenic N. attenuata plants producing MsCYP6B46 dsRNA. These and transgenic nicotine-deficient plants were planted into native habitats to study the phenotypes of larvae feeding on these plants and the behavior of their predators. The attack-behavior of a native wolf spider (Camptocosa parallela), a major nocturnal predator, provided the key to understanding MsCYP6B46's function: spiders clearly preferred CYP6B46-silenced larvae, just as they had preferred larvae fed nicotine-deficient plants. MsCYP6B46 redirects a small amount (0.65%) of ingested nicotine from the midgut into hemolymph, from which nicotine is exhaled through the spiracles as an antispider signal. CYP6B46-silenced larvae were more susceptible to spider-attack because they exhaled less nicotine because of lower hemolymph nicotine concentrations. CYP6B46-silenced larvae were impaired in distributing ingested nicotine from midgut to hemolymph, but not in the clearing of hemolymph nicotine or in the exhalation of nicotine from hemolymph. MsCYP6B46 could be a component of a previously hypothesized pump that converts nicotine to a short-lived, transportable, metabolite. Other predators, big-eyed bugs, and antlion larvae were insensitive to this defense. Thus, chemical defenses, too toxic to sequester, can be repurposed for defensive functions through respiration as a form of defensive halitosis, and predators can assist the functional elucidation of herbivore genes.

  2. Non-pathogenic rhizobacteria interfere with the attraction of parasitoids to aphid-induced plant volatiles via jasmonic acid signalling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pineda, Ana; Soler, Roxina; Weldegergis, Berhane T; Shimwela, Mpoki M; VAN Loon, Joop J A; Dicke, Marcel

    2013-02-01

    Beneficial soil-borne microbes, such as mycorrhizal fungi or rhizobacteria, can affect the interactions of plants with aboveground insects at several trophic levels. While the mechanisms of interactions with herbivorous insects, that is, the second trophic level, are starting to be understood, it remains unknown how plants mediate the interactions between soil microbes and carnivorous insects, that is, the third trophic level. Using Arabidopsis thaliana Col-0 and the aphid Myzus persicae, we evaluate here the underlying mechanisms involved in the plant-mediated interaction between the non-pathogenic rhizobacterium Pseudomonas fluorescens and the parasitoid Diaeretiella rapae, by combining ecological, chemical and molecular approaches. Rhizobacterial colonization modifies the composition of the blend of herbivore-induced plant volatiles. The volatile blend from rhizobacteria-treated aphid-infested plants is less attractive to an aphid parasitoid, in terms of both olfactory preference behaviour and oviposition, than the volatile blend from aphid-infested plants without rhizobacteria. Importantly, the effect of rhizobacteria on both the emission of herbivore-induced volatiles and parasitoid response to aphid-infested plants is lost in an Arabidopsis mutant (aos/dde2-2) that is impaired in jasmonic acid production. By modifying the blend of herbivore-induced plant volatiles that depend on the jasmonic acid-signalling pathway, root-colonizing microbes interfere with the attraction of parasitoids of leaf herbivores. © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  3. Herbaceous forage and selection patterns by ungulates across varying herbivore assemblages in a South African savanna

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Treydte, A.C.; Baumgartner, S.; Heitkonig, I.M.A.; Grant, C.C.; Getz, W.M.

    2013-01-01

    Herbivores generally have strong structural and compositional effects on vegetation, which in turn determines the plant forage species available. We investigated how selected large mammalian herbivore assemblages use and alter herbaceous vegetation structure and composition in a southern African

  4. The global distribution of diet breadth in insect herbivores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forister, Matthew L; Novotny, Vojtech; Panorska, Anna K; Baje, Leontine; Basset, Yves; Butterill, Philip T; Cizek, Lukas; Coley, Phyllis D; Dem, Francesca; Diniz, Ivone R; Drozd, Pavel; Fox, Mark; Glassmire, Andrea E; Hazen, Rebecca; Hrcek, Jan; Jahner, Joshua P; Kaman, Ondrej; Kozubowski, Tomasz J; Kursar, Thomas A; Lewis, Owen T; Lill, John; Marquis, Robert J; Miller, Scott E; Morais, Helena C; Murakami, Masashi; Nickel, Herbert; Pardikes, Nicholas A; Ricklefs, Robert E; Singer, Michael S; Smilanich, Angela M; Stireman, John O; Villamarín-Cortez, Santiago; Vodka, Stepan; Volf, Martin; Wagner, David L; Walla, Thomas; Weiblen, George D; Dyer, Lee A

    2015-01-13

    Understanding variation in resource specialization is important for progress on issues that include coevolution, community assembly, ecosystem processes, and the latitudinal gradient of species richness. Herbivorous insects are useful models for studying resource specialization, and the interaction between plants and herbivorous insects is one of the most common and consequential ecological associations on the planet. However, uncertainty persists regarding fundamental features of herbivore diet breadth, including its relationship to latitude and plant species richness. Here, we use a global dataset to investigate host range for over 7,500 insect herbivore species covering a wide taxonomic breadth and interacting with more than 2,000 species of plants in 165 families. We ask whether relatively specialized and generalized herbivores represent a dichotomy rather than a continuum from few to many host families and species attacked and whether diet breadth changes with increasing plant species richness toward the tropics. Across geographic regions and taxonomic subsets of the data, we find that the distribution of diet breadth is fit well by a discrete, truncated Pareto power law characterized by the predominance of specialized herbivores and a long, thin tail of more generalized species. Both the taxonomic and phylogenetic distributions of diet breadth shift globally with latitude, consistent with a higher frequency of specialized insects in tropical regions. We also find that more diverse lineages of plants support assemblages of relatively more specialized herbivores and that the global distribution of plant diversity contributes to but does not fully explain the latitudinal gradient in insect herbivore specialization.

  5. Fungal Endophytes: Beyond Herbivore Management

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bamisope S. Bamisile

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available The incorporation of entomopathogenic fungi as biocontrol agents into Integrated Pest Management (IPM programs without doubt, has been highly effective. The ability of these fungal pathogens such as Beauveria bassiana and Metarhizium anisopliae to exist as endophytes in plants and protect their colonized host plants against the primary herbivore pests has widely been reported. Aside this sole role of pest management that has been traditionally ascribed to fungal endophytes, recent findings provided evidence of other possible functions as plant yield promoter, soil nutrient distributor, abiotic stress and drought tolerance enhancer in plants. However, reports on these additional important effects of fungal endophytes on the colonized plants remain scanty. In this review, we discussed the various beneficial effects of endophytic fungi on the host plants and their primary herbivore pests; as well as some negative effects that are relatively unknown. We also highlighted the prospects of our findings in further increasing the acceptance of fungal endophytes as an integral part of pest management programs for optimized crop production.

  6. A novel interaction between plant-beneficial rhizobacteria and roots: colonization induces corn resistance against the root herbivore Diabrotica speciosa.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Franciele Santos

    Full Text Available A number of soil-borne microorganisms, such as mycorrhizal fungi and rhizobacteria, establish mutualistic interactions with plants, which can indirectly affect other organisms. Knowledge of the plant-mediated effects of mutualistic microorganisms is limited to aboveground insects, whereas there is little understanding of what role beneficial soil bacteria may play in plant defense against root herbivory. Here, we establish that colonization by the beneficial rhizobacterium Azospirillum brasilense affects the host selection and performance of the insect Diabrotica speciosa. Root larvae preferentially orient toward the roots of non-inoculated plants versus inoculated roots and gain less weight when feeding on inoculated plants. As inoculation by A. brasilense induces higher emissions of (E-β-caryophyllene compared with non-inoculated plants, it is plausible that the non-preference of D. speciosa for inoculated plants is related to this sesquiterpene, which is well known to mediate belowground insect-plant interactions. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first study showing that a beneficial rhizobacterium inoculant indirectly alters belowground plant-insect interactions. The role of A. brasilense as part of an integrative pest management (IPM program for the protection of corn against the South American corn rootworm, D. speciosa, is considered.

  7. A novel interaction between plant-beneficial rhizobacteria and roots: colonization induces corn resistance against the root herbivore Diabrotica speciosa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santos, Franciele; Peñaflor, Maria Fernanda G V; Paré, Paul W; Sanches, Patrícia A; Kamiya, Aline C; Tonelli, Mateus; Nardi, Cristiane; Bento, José Mauricio S

    2014-01-01

    A number of soil-borne microorganisms, such as mycorrhizal fungi and rhizobacteria, establish mutualistic interactions with plants, which can indirectly affect other organisms. Knowledge of the plant-mediated effects of mutualistic microorganisms is limited to aboveground insects, whereas there is little understanding of what role beneficial soil bacteria may play in plant defense against root herbivory. Here, we establish that colonization by the beneficial rhizobacterium Azospirillum brasilense affects the host selection and performance of the insect Diabrotica speciosa. Root larvae preferentially orient toward the roots of non-inoculated plants versus inoculated roots and gain less weight when feeding on inoculated plants. As inoculation by A. brasilense induces higher emissions of (E)-β-caryophyllene compared with non-inoculated plants, it is plausible that the non-preference of D. speciosa for inoculated plants is related to this sesquiterpene, which is well known to mediate belowground insect-plant interactions. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first study showing that a beneficial rhizobacterium inoculant indirectly alters belowground plant-insect interactions. The role of A. brasilense as part of an integrative pest management (IPM) program for the protection of corn against the South American corn rootworm, D. speciosa, is considered.

  8. Seasonal phenology of interactions involving short-lived annual plants, a multivoltine herbivore and its endoparasitoid wasp

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Fei, Minghui; Gols, R.; Harvey, J.A.

    2014-01-01

    Spatial-temporal realism is often missing in many studies of multitrophic interactions, which are conducted at a single time frame and/or involving interactions between insects with a single species of plant. In this scenario, an underlying assumption is that the host-plant species is ubiquitous

  9. An amino acid substitution inhibits specialist herbivore production of a competitive antagonist effector and recovers insect-induced plant defenses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Plants respond to insect herbivory through the production of biochemicals that function as either direct defenses or indirect defenses via the attraction of natural enemies. Curiously, attack by even closely related insect pests can result in distinctive levels of induced plant defenses. Despite the...

  10. An amino acid substitution inhibits specialist herbivore production of an antagonist effector and recovers insect-induced plant defenses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Plants respond to insect herbivory through the production of biochemicals that function as either direct defenses or indirect defenses via the attraction of natural enemies. Curiously, attack by even closely related insect pests can result in distinctive levels of induced plant defenses. Despite the...

  11. Effects of trophic level and metamorphosis on discrimination of hydrogen isotopes in a plant-herbivore system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peters, Jacob M.; Wolf, Nathan; Stricker, Craig A.; Collier, Timothy R.; Martinez del Rio, Carlos

    2012-01-01

    The use of stable isotopes in ecological studies requires that we know the magnitude of discrimination factors between consumer and element sources. The causes of variation in discrimination factors for carbon and nitrogen have been relatively well studied. In contrast, the discrimination factors for hydrogen have rarely been measured. We grew cabbage looper caterpillars (Trichoplusia ni) on cabbage (Brassica oleracea) plants irrigated with four treatments of deuterium-enriched water (δD = -131, -88, -48, and -2‰, respectively), allowing some of them to reach adulthood as moths. Tissue δD values of plants, caterpillars, and moths were linearly correlated with the isotopic composition of irrigation water. However, the slope of these relationships was less than 1, and hence, discrimination factors depended on the δD value of irrigation water. We hypothesize that this dependence is an artifact of growing plants in an environment with a common atmospheric δD value. Both caterpillars and moths were significantly enriched in deuterium relative to plants by ~45‰ and 23‰ respectively, but the moths had lower tissue to plant discrimination factors than did the caterpillars. If the trophic enrichment documented here is universal, δD values must be accounted for in geographic assignment studies. The isotopic value of carbon was transferred more or less faithfully across trophic levels, but δ15N values increased from plants to insects and we observed significant non-trophic 15N enrichment in the metamorphosis from larvae to adult.

  12. Informed herbivore movement and interplant communication determine the effects of induced resistance in an individual-based model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rubin, Ilan N; Ellner, Stephen P; Kessler, André; Morrell, Kimberly A

    2015-09-01

    1. Plant induced resistance to herbivory affects the spatial distribution of herbivores, as well as their performance. In recent years, theories regarding the benefit to plants of induced resistance have shifted from ideas of optimal resource allocation towards a more eclectic set of theories that consider spatial and temporal plant variability and the spatial distribution of herbivores among plants. However, consensus is lacking on whether induced resistance causes increased herbivore aggregation or increased evenness, as both trends have been experimentally documented. 2. We created a spatial individual-based model that can describe many plant-herbivore systems with induced resistance, in order to analyse how different aspects of induced resistance might affect herbivore distribution, and the total damage to a plant population, during a growing season. 3. We analyse the specific effects on herbivore aggregation of informed herbivore movement (preferential movement to less-damaged plants) and of information transfer between plants about herbivore attacks, in order to identify mechanisms driving both aggregation and evenness. We also investigate how the resulting herbivore distributions affect the total damage to plants and aggregation of damage. 4. Even, random and aggregated herbivore distributions can all occur in our model with induced resistance. Highest levels of aggregation occurred in the models with informed herbivore movement, and the most even distributions occurred when the average number of herbivores per plant was low. With constitutive resistance, only random distributions occur. Damage to plants was spatially correlated, unless plants recover very quickly from damage; herbivore spatial autocorrelation was always weak. 5. Our model and results provide a simple explanation for the apparent conflict between experimental results, indicating that both increased aggregation and increased evenness of herbivores can result from induced resistance. We

  13. Demographic models reveal the shape of density dependence for a specialist insect herbivore on variable host plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Tom E X

    2007-07-01

    1. It is widely accepted that density-dependent processes play an important role in most natural populations. However, persistent challenges in our understanding of density-dependent population dynamics include evaluating the shape of the relationship between density and demographic rates (linear, concave, convex), and identifying extrinsic factors that can mediate this relationship. 2. I studied the population dynamics of the cactus bug Narnia pallidicornis on host plants (Opuntia imbricata) that varied naturally in relative reproductive effort (RRE, the proportion of meristems allocated to reproduction), an important plant quality trait. I manipulated per-plant cactus bug densities, quantified subsequent dynamics, and fit stage-structured models to the experimental data to ask if and how density influences demographic parameters. 3. In the field experiment, I found that populations with variable starting densities quickly converged upon similar growth trajectories. In the model-fitting analyses, the data strongly supported a model that defined the juvenile cactus bug retention parameter (joint probability of surviving and not dispersing) as a nonlinear decreasing function of density. The estimated shape of this relationship shifted from concave to convex with increasing host-plant RRE. 4. The results demonstrate that host-plant traits are critical sources of variation in the strength and shape of density dependence in insects, and highlight the utility of integrated experimental-theoretical approaches for identifying processes underlying patterns of change in natural populations.

  14. Testing local host adaptation and phenotypic plasticity in a herbivore when alternative related host plants occur sympatrically.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lorena Ruiz-Montoya

    Full Text Available Host race formation in phytophagous insects can be an early stage of adaptive speciation. However, the evolution of phenotypic plasticity in host use is another possible outcome. Using a reciprocal transplant experiment we tested the hypothesis of local adaptation in the aphid Brevicoryne brassicae. Aphid genotypes derived from two sympatric host plants, Brassica oleracea and B. campestris, were assessed in order to measure the extent of phenotypic plasticity in morphological and life history traits in relation to the host plants. We obtained an index of phenotypic plasticity for each genotype. Morphological variation of aphids was summarized by principal components analysis. Significant effects of recipient host on morphological variation and life history traits (establishment, age at first reproduction, number of nymphs, and intrinsic growth rate were detected. We did not detected genotype × host plant interaction; in general the genotypes developed better on B. campestris, independent of the host plant species from which they were collected. Therefore, there was no evidence to suggest local adaptation. Regarding plasticity, significant differences among genotypes in the index of plasticity were detected. Furthermore, significant selection on PC1 (general aphid body size on B. campestris, and on PC1 and PC2 (body length relative to body size on B. oleracea was detected. The elevation of the reaction norm of PC1 and the slope of the reaction norm for PC2 (i.e., plasticity were under directional selection. Thus, host plant species constitute distinct selective environments for B. brassicae. Aphid genotypes expressed different phenotypes in response to the host plant with low or nil fitness costs. Phenotypic plasticity and gene flow limits natural selection for host specialization promoting the maintenance of genetic variation in host exploitation.

  15. Balancing of protein and lipid intake by a mammalian carnivore, the mink, Mustela vison

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mayntz, David; Nielsen, Vivi Hunnicke; Sørensen, Allan

    2009-01-01

    Many herbivores and omnivores can balance their intake of macronutrients when faced with nutritionally variable environments. Carnivores, however, are widely believed to optimize their rates of prey capture and energy intake rather than balancing nutrients. We tested nutrient balancing in captive...... target) of the two macronutrients. When given only one food of fixed nutrient composition, mink balanced macronutrient intake relative to the intake target, without showing the excessive energy intake on diets with a low percentage of protein and energy deficit on diets with a high percentage of protein...... previously reported for herbivores and omnivores, including humans. This demonstration of nutrient balancing in a carnivorous mammal indicates that the capacity for nutrient balancing is a more general phenomenon across trophic levels than was hitherto believed to be the case...

  16. Volatile induction of infected and neighbouring uninfected plants potentially influence attraction/repellence of a cereal herbivore

    Science.gov (United States)

    Plant infection by pathogens can induce volatile organic compounds (VOCs). We infected ‘McNeal’ wheat and ‘Harrington’ barley with a Fusarium spp. blend (graminearum, avenaceum, and culmorum). Both cereals had highest VOC induction 14 d after pathogen introduction, significantly slightly lower induc...

  17. Experience-based behavioral and chemosensory changes in the generalist insect herbivore Helicoverpa armigera exposed to two deterrent plant chemicals

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Zhou, D.; Loon, van J.J.A.; Wang, C.Z.

    2010-01-01

    Behavioral and electrophysiological responses of larvae of the polyphagous moth species Helicoverpa armigera to two plant-derived allelochemicals were studied, both in larvae that had been reared on a diet devoid of these compounds and in larvae previously exposed to these compounds. In dual-choice

  18. Herbivory induces systemic production of plant volatiles that attract predators of the herbivore: extraction of endogenous elicitor.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dicke, M.; Baarlen, van P.; Wessels, R.; Dijkman, H.

    1993-01-01

    It was previously shown that in response to infestation by spider mites (Tetranychus urticae), lima bean plants produce a volatile herbivoreinduced synomone that attracts phytoseiid mites (Phytoseiulus persimilis) that are predators of the spider mites. The production of predator-attracting

  19. Climate and vegetation in a semi-arid savanna: Development of a climate–vegetation response model linking plant metabolic performance to climate and the effects on forage availability for large herbivores

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Armin H. Seydack

    2012-02-01

    Developing the climate–vegetation response model involved three main components, namely (1 defining indicators of forage availability to herbivores (nitrogen productivity, nitrogen quality, carbon-nutrient quality, (2 identifying herbivore species guilds of similar nutritional requirements with respect to these indicators [bulk feeders with tolerance to fibrous herbage (buffalo, waterbuck, bulk feeders with preference for high nitrogen quality forage (short grass preference grazers: blue wildebeest and zebra and selective feeders where dietary items of relatively high carbon-nutrient quality represented key forage resources (selective grazers: sable antelope, roan antelope, tsessebe, eland] and (3 developing a process model where the expected effects of plant metabolic responses to climate on key forage resources were made explicit. According to the climate–vegetation response model both shorter-term transient temperature acclimation pulses and longer-term shifts in plant metabolic functionality settings were predicted to have occurred in response to temperature trends over the past century. These temperature acclimation responses were expected to have resulted in transient pulses of increased forage availability (increased nitrogen- and carbon-nutrient quality, as well as the progressive long-term decline of the carbon-nutrient quality of forage. Conservation implications: The climate–vegetation response model represents a research framework for further studies contributing towards the enhanced understanding of landscape-scale functioning of savanna systems with reference to the interplay between climate, vegetation and herbivore population dynamics. Gains in such understanding can support sound conservation management.

  20. Role of tomato lipoxygenase D in wound-induced jasmonate biosynthesis and plant immunity to insect herbivores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yan, Liuhua; Zhai, Qingzhe; Wei, Jianing; Li, Shuyu; Wang, Bao; Huang, Tingting; Du, Minmin; Sun, Jiaqiang; Kang, Le; Li, Chang-Bao; Li, Chuanyou

    2013-01-01

    In response to insect attack and mechanical wounding, plants activate the expression of genes involved in various defense-related processes. A fascinating feature of these inducible defenses is their occurrence both locally at the wounding site and systemically in undamaged leaves throughout the plant. Wound-inducible proteinase inhibitors (PIs) in tomato (Solanum lycopersicum) provide an attractive model to understand the signal transduction events leading from localized injury to the systemic expression of defense-related genes. Among the identified intercellular molecules in regulating systemic wound response of tomato are the peptide signal systemin and the oxylipin signal jasmonic acid (JA). The systemin/JA signaling pathway provides a unique opportunity to investigate, in a single experimental system, the mechanism by which peptide and oxylipin signals interact to coordinate plant systemic immunity. Here we describe the characterization of the tomato suppressor of prosystemin-mediated responses8 (spr8) mutant, which was isolated as a suppressor of (pro)systemin-mediated signaling. spr8 plants exhibit a series of JA-dependent immune deficiencies, including the inability to express wound-responsive genes, abnormal development of glandular trichomes, and severely compromised resistance to cotton bollworm (Helicoverpa armigera) and Botrytis cinerea. Map-based cloning studies demonstrate that the spr8 mutant phenotype results from a point mutation in the catalytic domain of TomLoxD, a chloroplast-localized lipoxygenase involved in JA biosynthesis. We present evidence that overexpression of TomLoxD leads to elevated wound-induced JA biosynthesis, increased expression of wound-responsive genes and, therefore, enhanced resistance to insect herbivory attack and necrotrophic pathogen infection. These results indicate that TomLoxD is involved in wound-induced JA biosynthesis and highlight the application potential of this gene for crop protection against insects and

  1. Role of tomato lipoxygenase D in wound-induced jasmonate biosynthesis and plant immunity to insect herbivores.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Liuhua Yan

    Full Text Available In response to insect attack and mechanical wounding, plants activate the expression of genes involved in various defense-related processes. A fascinating feature of these inducible defenses is their occurrence both locally at the wounding site and systemically in undamaged leaves throughout the plant. Wound-inducible proteinase inhibitors (PIs in tomato (Solanum lycopersicum provide an attractive model to understand the signal transduction events leading from localized injury to the systemic expression of defense-related genes. Among the identified intercellular molecules in regulating systemic wound response of tomato are the peptide signal systemin and the oxylipin signal jasmonic acid (JA. The systemin/JA signaling pathway provides a unique opportunity to investigate, in a single experimental system, the mechanism by which peptide and oxylipin signals interact to coordinate plant systemic immunity. Here we describe the characterization of the tomato suppressor of prosystemin-mediated responses8 (spr8 mutant, which was isolated as a suppressor of (prosystemin-mediated signaling. spr8 plants exhibit a series of JA-dependent immune deficiencies, including the inability to express wound-responsive genes, abnormal development of glandular trichomes, and severely compromised resistance to cotton bollworm (Helicoverpa armigera and Botrytis cinerea. Map-based cloning studies demonstrate that the spr8 mutant phenotype results from a point mutation in the catalytic domain of TomLoxD, a chloroplast-localized lipoxygenase involved in JA biosynthesis. We present evidence that overexpression of TomLoxD leads to elevated wound-induced JA biosynthesis, increased expression of wound-responsive genes and, therefore, enhanced resistance to insect herbivory attack and necrotrophic pathogen infection. These results indicate that TomLoxD is involved in wound-induced JA biosynthesis and highlight the application potential of this gene for crop protection against

  2. Can sacrificial feeding areas protect aquatic plants from herbivore grazing? Using behavioural ecology to inform wildlife management.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kevin A Wood

    Full Text Available Effective wildlife management is needed for conservation, economic and human well-being objectives. However, traditional population control methods are frequently ineffective, unpopular with stakeholders, may affect non-target species, and can be both expensive and impractical to implement. New methods which address these issues and offer effective wildlife management are required. We used an individual-based model to predict the efficacy of a sacrificial feeding area in preventing grazing damage by mute swans (Cygnus olor to adjacent river vegetation of high conservation and economic value. The accuracy of model predictions was assessed by a comparison with observed field data, whilst prediction robustness was evaluated using a sensitivity analysis. We used repeated simulations to evaluate how the efficacy of the sacrificial feeding area was regulated by (i food quantity, (ii food quality, and (iii the functional response of the forager. Our model gave accurate predictions of aquatic plant biomass, carrying capacity, swan mortality, swan foraging effort, and river use. Our model predicted that increased sacrificial feeding area food quantity and quality would prevent the depletion of aquatic plant biomass by swans. When the functional response for vegetation in the sacrificial feeding area was increased, the food quantity and quality in the sacrificial feeding area required to protect adjacent aquatic plants were reduced. Our study demonstrates how the insights of behavioural ecology can be used to inform wildlife management. The principles that underpin our model predictions are likely to be valid across a range of different resource-consumer interactions, emphasising the generality of our approach to the evaluation of strategies for resolving wildlife management problems.

  3. assimilation efficiency in two herbivores, oreochromis niloticus and ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

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    ABSTRACT: The abilities of two herbivorous animals (Oreochromis niloticus and the larva ... improved lyses of algal cells. ... Thus, more studies to understand how these and other factors affect ... as plant cells are surrounded by cell wall, and.

  4. Functional characteristics of traps of aquatic carnivorous Utricularia species

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Adamec, Lubomír

    2011-01-01

    Roč. 95, č. 3 (2011), 226-233 ISSN 0304-3770 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GAP504/11/0783 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516 Keywords : aquatic carnivorous plants * trap thickness measurements * water pumping Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 1.516, year: 2011

  5. Feeding on prey increases photosynthetic efficiency in the carnivorous sundew Drosera capensis

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Pavlovič, A.; Krausko, M.; Libiaková, M.; Adamec, Lubomír

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 113, č. 1 (2014), s. 69-78 ISSN 0305-7364 Institutional support: RVO:67985939 Keywords : carnivorous plants * fruit flies * digestive enzymes Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 3.654, year: 2014

  6. Does methyl salicylate, a component of herbivore-induced plant odour, promote sporulation of the mite-pathogenic fungus Neozygites tanajoae?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hountondji, Fabien C C; Hanna, Rachid; Sabelis, Maurice W

    2006-01-01

    Blends of volatile chemicals emanating from cassava leaves infested by the cassava green mite were found to promote conidiation of Neozygites tanajoae, an entomopathogenic fungus specific to this mite. Methyl salicylate (MeSA) is one compound frequently present in blends of herbivore-induced plant volatiles (HIPV) as well as that of mite-infested cassava. Here, we investigated the effect of methyl salicylate in its pure form on the production of pre-infective spores (conidia), and the germination of these spores into infective spores (capilliconidia), by a Brazilian isolate and a Beninese isolate of N. tanajoae. Mummified mites previously infected by the fungal isolates were screened under optimal abiotic conditions for sporulation inside tightly closed boxes with or without methyl salicylate diffusing from a capillary tube. Production of conidia was consistently higher (37%) when the Beninese isolate was exposed to MeSA than when not exposed to it (305.5 +/- 52.62 and 223.2 +/- 38.13 conidia per mummy with and without MeSA, respectively). MeSA, however, did not promote conidia production by the Brazilian isolate (387.4 +/- 44.74 and 415.8 +/- 57.95 conidia per mummy with and without MeSA, respectively). Germination of the conidia into capilliconidia was not affected by MeSA for either isolate (0.2%, 252.6 +/- 31.80 vs. 253.0 +/- 36.65 for the Beninese isolate and 4.2%, 268.5 +/- 37.90 vs. 280.2 +/- 29.43 for the Brazilian isolate). The effects of MeSA on the production of conidia were similar to those obtained under exposure to the complete blends of HIPV for the case of the Beninese isolate, but dissimilar (no promoting effect of MeSA) for the case of the Brazilian isolate. This shows that MeSA, being one compound out of many HIPV, can be a factor promoting sporulation of N. tanajoae, but it may not be the only factor as its effect varies with the fungal isolate under study.

  7. Host plant selection by a monophagous herbivore is not mediated by quantitative changes in unique plant chemistry : Agonopterix alstroemeriana and Conium maculatum

    OpenAIRE

    Castells, Eva

    2008-01-01

    Host plant selection by ovipositing females is a key process determining the success of phytophagous insects. In oligophagous lepidopterans, host-specific plant secondary chemicals are expected to be dominant factors governing oviposition behavior; distinctive compounds can serve as high-contrast signals that clearly differentiate confamilial hosts from non-hosts increasing the accuracy of host quality evaluation. Agonopterix alstroemeriana (Clerk) (Lepidoptera: Oecophoridae) and Conium macul...

  8. Growth data - Stable isotope analysis as a tool to determine the metabolic fates of dietary carbohydrates from plant-based alternative feed ingredients in the carnivorous sablefish, Anoplopoma fimbria

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Development of specialized feeds for carnivorous species such as sablefish (Anoplopoma fimbria) in which fishmeal and oil from marine sources are replaced by more...

  9. Fish culture data - Stable isotope analysis as a tool to determine the metabolic fates of dietary carbohydrates from plant-based alternative feed ingredients in the carnivorous sablefish, Anoplopoma fimbria

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Development of specialized feeds for carnivorous species such as sablefish (Anoplopoma fimbria) in which fishmeal and oil from marine sources are replaced by more...

  10. Chemical composition of fish and diets - Stable isotope analysis as a tool to determine the metabolic fates of dietary carbohydrates from plant-based alternative feed ingredients in the carnivorous sablefish, Anoplopoma fimbria

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Development of specialized feeds for carnivorous species such as sablefish (Anoplopoma fimbria) in which fishmeal and oil from marine sources are replaced by more...

  11. Dietary patterns of two herbivorous rodents: and Parotomys brantsii ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Frequency of occurrence of plant species in the diets were compared with availability of the plants in the rodents' habitats. Both rodents are generalist herbivores, eating plants species in proportion to the availability in their habitats. Dietary patterns, diversity of diet and degree of overlap between rodent's diets are a function ...

  12. Detecting changes in insect herbivore communities along a pollution gradient

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Eatough Jones, Michele; Paine, Timothy D.

    2006-01-01

    The forests surrounding the urban areas of the Los Angeles basin are impacted by ozone and nitrogen pollutants arising from urban areas. We examined changes in the herbivore communities of three prominent plant species (ponderosa pine, California black oak and bracken fern) at six sites along an air pollution gradient. Insects were extracted from foliage samples collected in spring, as foliage reached full expansion. Community differences were evaluated using total herbivore abundance, richness, Shannon-Weiner diversity, and discriminant function analysis. Even without conspicuous changes in total numbers, diversity or richness of herbivores, herbivore groups showed patterns of change that followed the air pollution gradient that were apparent through discriminant function analysis. For bracken fern and oak, chewing insects were more dominant at high pollution sites. Oak herbivore communities showed the strongest effect. These changes in herbivore communities may affect nutrient cycling in forest systems. - Differences in insect herbivore communities were associated with an ambient air pollution gradient in the mixed conifer forest outside the Los Angeles area

  13. Detecting changes in insect herbivore communities along a pollution gradient

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Eatough Jones, Michele [Department of Entomology, University of California Riverside, Riverside, CA 92521 (United States)]. E-mail: michele.eatough@ucr.edu; Paine, Timothy D. [Department of Entomology, University of California Riverside, Riverside, CA 92521 (United States)]. E-mail: timothy.paine@ucr.edu

    2006-10-15

    The forests surrounding the urban areas of the Los Angeles basin are impacted by ozone and nitrogen pollutants arising from urban areas. We examined changes in the herbivore communities of three prominent plant species (ponderosa pine, California black oak and bracken fern) at six sites along an air pollution gradient. Insects were extracted from foliage samples collected in spring, as foliage reached full expansion. Community differences were evaluated using total herbivore abundance, richness, Shannon-Weiner diversity, and discriminant function analysis. Even without conspicuous changes in total numbers, diversity or richness of herbivores, herbivore groups showed patterns of change that followed the air pollution gradient that were apparent through discriminant function analysis. For bracken fern and oak, chewing insects were more dominant at high pollution sites. Oak herbivore communities showed the strongest effect. These changes in herbivore communities may affect nutrient cycling in forest systems. - Differences in insect herbivore communities were associated with an ambient air pollution gradient in the mixed conifer forest outside the Los Angeles area.

  14. The Carnivore Connection Hypothesis: Revisited

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jennie C. Brand-Miller

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available The “Carnivore Connection” hypothesizes that, during human evolution, a scarcity of dietary carbohydrate in diets with low plant : animal subsistence ratios led to insulin resistance providing a survival and reproductive advantage with selection of genes for insulin resistance. The selection pressure was relaxed at the beginning of the Agricultural Revolution when large quantities of cereals first entered human diets. The “Carnivore Connection” explains the high prevalence of intrinsic insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes in populations that transition rapidly from traditional diets with a low-glycemic load, to high-carbohydrate, high-glycemic index diets that characterize modern diets. Selection pressure has been relaxed longest in European populations, explaining a lower prevalence of insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes, despite recent exposure to famine and food scarcity. Increasing obesity and habitual consumption of high-glycemic-load diets worsens insulin resistance and increases the risk of type 2 diabetes in all populations.

  15. Hunting, Exotic Carnivores, and Habitat Loss: Anthropogenic Effects on a Native Carnivore Community, Madagascar.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zach J Farris

    Full Text Available The wide-ranging, cumulative, negative effects of anthropogenic disturbance, including habitat degradation, exotic species, and hunting, on native wildlife has been well documented across a range of habitats worldwide with carnivores potentially being the most vulnerable due to their more extinction prone characteristics. Investigating the effects of anthropogenic pressures on sympatric carnivores is needed to improve our ability to develop targeted, effective management plans for carnivore conservation worldwide. Utilizing photographic, line-transect, and habitat sampling, as well as landscape analyses and village-based bushmeat hunting surveys, we provide the first investigation of how multiple forms of habitat degradation (fragmentation, exotic carnivores, human encroachment, and hunting affect carnivore occupancy across Madagascar's largest protected area: the Masoala-Makira landscape. We found that as degradation increased, native carnivore occupancy and encounter rates decreased while exotic carnivore occupancy and encounter rates increased. Feral cats (Felis species and domestic dogs (Canis familiaris had higher occupancy than half of the native carnivore species across Madagascar's largest protected landscape. Bird and small mammal encounter rates were negatively associated with exotic carnivore occupancy, but positively associated with the occupancy of four native carnivore species. Spotted fanaloka (Fossa fossana occupancy was constrained by the presence of exotic feral cats and exotic small Indian civet (Viverricula indica. Hunting was intense across the four study sites where hunting was studied, with the highest rates for the small Indian civet (mean=90 individuals consumed/year, the ring-tailed vontsira (Galidia elegans (mean=58 consumed/year, and the fosa (Cryptoprocta ferox (mean=31 consumed/year. Our modeling results suggest hunters target intact forest where carnivore occupancy, abundance, and species richness, are highest

  16. Hunting, Exotic Carnivores, and Habitat Loss: Anthropogenic Effects on a Native Carnivore Community, Madagascar.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farris, Zach J; Golden, Christopher D; Karpanty, Sarah; Murphy, Asia; Stauffer, Dean; Ratelolahy, Felix; Andrianjakarivelo, Vonjy; Holmes, Christopher M; Kelly, Marcella J

    2015-01-01

    The wide-ranging, cumulative, negative effects of anthropogenic disturbance, including habitat degradation, exotic species, and hunting, on native wildlife has been well documented across a range of habitats worldwide with carnivores potentially being the most vulnerable due to their more extinction prone characteristics. Investigating the effects of anthropogenic pressures on sympatric carnivores is needed to improve our ability to develop targeted, effective management plans for carnivore conservation worldwide. Utilizing photographic, line-transect, and habitat sampling, as well as landscape analyses and village-based bushmeat hunting surveys, we provide the first investigation of how multiple forms of habitat degradation (fragmentation, exotic carnivores, human encroachment, and hunting) affect carnivore occupancy across Madagascar's largest protected area: the Masoala-Makira landscape. We found that as degradation increased, native carnivore occupancy and encounter rates decreased while exotic carnivore occupancy and encounter rates increased. Feral cats (Felis species) and domestic dogs (Canis familiaris) had higher occupancy than half of the native carnivore species across Madagascar's largest protected landscape. Bird and small mammal encounter rates were negatively associated with exotic carnivore occupancy, but positively associated with the occupancy of four native carnivore species. Spotted fanaloka (Fossa fossana) occupancy was constrained by the presence of exotic feral cats and exotic small Indian civet (Viverricula indica). Hunting was intense across the four study sites where hunting was studied, with the highest rates for the small Indian civet (mean=90 individuals consumed/year), the ring-tailed vontsira (Galidia elegans) (mean=58 consumed/year), and the fosa (Cryptoprocta ferox) (mean=31 consumed/year). Our modeling results suggest hunters target intact forest where carnivore occupancy, abundance, and species richness, are highest. These various

  17. First record of entodiniomorph ciliates in a carnivore, the maned wolf (Chrysocyon brachyurus), from Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vynne, Carly; Kinsella, John M

    2009-06-01

    The entodiniomorph ciliates (Ciliophora: Entodiniomorphida) are endosymbiotes widely found in the intestines of herbivorous mammals. These commensals commonly occur in the Artiodactyla and Perissodactyla and have also been described in the Proboscidea, Primates, Rodentia, and Diprotodontia. This study reports the first finding of a ciliate in a member of order Carnivora, the maned wolf (Chrysocyon brachyurus). Fecal samples from wild and captive maned wolves were screened using ethyl acetate sedimentation. Prevalence in fecal samples collected from free-ranging maned wolves in Brazil was 40% (6 of 15). Fecal samples from two of four captive individuals from the St. Louis Zoo also had the same species of ciliate. The largely frugivorous diet of the maned wolf likely explains the occurrence of these normally herbivore-associated endosymbiotes in a carnivore.

  18. Selenium hyperaccumulation offers protection from cell disruptor herbivores

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Quinn Colin F

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Hyperaccumulation, the rare capacity of certain plant species to accumulate toxic trace elements to levels several orders of magnitude higher than other species growing on the same site, is thought to be an elemental defense mechanism against herbivores and pathogens. Previous research has shown that selenium (Se hyperaccumulation protects plants from a variety of herbivores and pathogens. Selenium hyperaccumulating plants sequester Se in discrete locations in the leaf periphery, making them potentially more susceptible to some herbivore feeding modes than others. In this study we investigate the protective function of Se in the Se hyperaccumulators Stanleya pinnata and Astragalus bisulcatus against two cell disrupting herbivores, the western flower thrips (Frankliniella occidentalis and the two-spotted spider mite (Tetranychus urticae. Results Astragalus bisulcatus and S. pinnata with high Se concentrations (greater than 650 mg Se kg-1 were less subject to thrips herbivory than plants with low Se levels (less than 150 mg Se kg-1. Furthermore, in plants containing elevated Se levels, leaves with higher concentrations of Se suffered less herbivory than leaves with less Se. Spider mites also preferred to feed on low-Se A. bisulcatus and S. pinnata plants rather than high-Se plants. Spider mite populations on A. bisulcatus decreased after plants were given a higher concentration of Se. Interestingly, spider mites could colonize A. bisulcatus plants containing up to 200 mg Se kg-1 dry weight, concentrations which are toxic to many other herbivores. Selenium distribution and speciation studies using micro-focused X-ray fluorescence (μXRF mapping and Se K-edge X-ray absorption spectroscopy revealed that the spider mites accumulated primarily methylselenocysteine, the relatively non-toxic form of Se that is also the predominant form of Se in hyperaccumulators. Conclusions This is the first reported study investigating the

  19. Are exotic herbivores better competitors? A meta-analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Radville, Laura; Gonda-King, Liahna; Gómez, Sara; Kaplan, Ian; Preisser, Evan L

    2014-01-01

    Competition plays an important role in structuring the community dynamics of phytophagous insects. As the number and impact of biological invasions increase, it has become increasingly important to determine whether competitive differences exist between native and exotic insects. We conducted a meta-analysis to test the hypothesis that native/ exotic status affects the outcome of herbivore competition. Specifically, we used data from 160 published studies to assess plant-mediated competition in phytophagous insects. For each pair of competing herbivores, we determined the native range and coevolutionary history of each herbivore and host plant. Plant-mediated competition occurred frequently, but neither native nor exotic insects were consistently better competitors. Spatial separation reduced competition in native insects but showed little effect on exotics. Temporal separation negatively impacted native insects but did not affect competition in exotics. Insects that coevolved with their host plant were more affected by interspecific competition than herbivores that lacked a coevolutionary history. Insects that have not coevolved with their host plant may be at a competitive advantage if they overcome plant defenses. As native/exotic status does not consistently predict outcomes of competitive interactions, plant-insect coevolutionary history should be considered in studies of competition.

  20. Importancia de la heterogeneidad ambiental en la ecología de plantas carnívoras mediterráneas: implicaciones para la conservación Environmental heterogeneity and the ecology of carnivorous plants: implications for conservation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Regino Zamora

    2002-03-01

    Full Text Available En la cuenca mediterránea, la mayoría de las plantas carnívoras pertenecientes al género Pinguicula habitan las paredes húmedas de montañas calizas. Estos escenarios rocosos condicionan la ecología de las poblaciones situadas en distintos exposiciones (solana versus umbría. Las diferencias temporales en la floración entre plantas que crecen en distintos microhábitats, unido a las diferencias espaciales en la distribución y abundancia de las especies de polinizadores, provocan barreras al flujo genico vía polen entre microhábitats soleados y umbríos. Estos mecanismos ecológicos pueden actuar sinérgicamente con otros factores que limitan el flujo génico, como distancia geográfica y la compleja orografía de las montañas, favoreciendo la diferenciación local. Las poblaciones de Pinguicula vallisneriifolia muestran también diferentes abundancias y estructuras demográficas dependiendo del microhábitat donde crecen las plantas. El carácter perenne y la reproducción asexual de esta planta le permite ralentizar la extinción poblacional, incluso en ausencia de reclutamiento via plántula en los lugares secos y soleados. Sin embargo, con la actual tendencia hacia una mayor aridez, los escasos micrositios adecuados para la germinación y establecimiento de plántulas se desplazan hacia los sectores de las paredes más umbríos y húmedos, pero donde el desarrollo reproductivo está limitado por la escasez de luz. Para la conservación de esta planta carnívora hay que llevar a cabo medidas de manejo para mantener un número mínimo de nichos de regeneración efectivos. La conservación de P. vallisneriifolia pasa por mantener la riqueza de escenarios ecológicos (i.e., mantener poblaciones de sol versus de sombra, como parte de la variabilidad total a conservar, no solo geográfica, sino también de escenario microclimáticoMost carnivorous plants belonging to the Pinguicula genus inhabit mountains in the Mediterranean basin

  1. Population ecology of the endangered aquatic carnivorous macrophyte Aldrovanda vesiculosa at a naturalised site in North America

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Cross, A. T.; Skates, L. M.; Adamec, Lubomír; Hammond, C. M.; Sheridan, P. M.; Dixon, K. W.

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 60, č. 9 (2015), s. 1772-1783 ISSN 0046-5070 Institutional support: RVO:67985939 Keywords : aquatic carnivorous plant * competition * population ecology Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 2.933, year: 2015

  2. Evolution of genome size and chromosome number in the carnivorous plant genus Genlisea (Lentibulariaceae), with a new estimate of the minimum genome size in angiosperms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fleischmann, Andreas; Michael, Todd P.; Rivadavia, Fernando; Sousa, Aretuza; Wang, Wenqin; Temsch, Eva M.; Greilhuber, Johann; Müller, Kai F.; Heubl, Günther

    2014-01-01

    Background and Aims Some species of Genlisea possess ultrasmall nuclear genomes, the smallest known among angiosperms, and some have been found to have chromosomes of diminutive size, which may explain why chromosome numbers and karyotypes are not known for the majority of species of the genus. However, other members of the genus do not possess ultrasmall genomes, nor do most taxa studied in related genera of the family or order. This study therefore examined the evolution of genome sizes and chromosome numbers in Genlisea in a phylogenetic context. The correlations of genome size with chromosome number and size, with the phylogeny of the group and with growth forms and habitats were also examined. Methods Nuclear genome sizes were measured from cultivated plant material for a comprehensive sampling of taxa, including nearly half of all species of Genlisea and representing all major lineages. Flow cytometric measurements were conducted in parallel in two laboratories in order to compare the consistency of different methods and controls. Chromosome counts were performed for the majority of taxa, comparing different staining techniques for the ultrasmall chromosomes. Key Results Genome sizes of 15 taxa of Genlisea are presented and interpreted in a phylogenetic context. A high degree of congruence was found between genome size distribution and the major phylogenetic lineages. Ultrasmall genomes with 1C values of sections of the genus. The smallest known plant genomes were not found in G. margaretae, as previously reported, but in G. tuberosa (1C ≈ 61 Mbp) and some strains of G. aurea (1C ≈ 64 Mbp). Conclusions Genlisea is an ideal candidate model organism for the understanding of genome reduction as the genus includes species with both relatively large (∼1700 Mbp) and ultrasmall (∼61 Mbp) genomes. This comparative, phylogeny-based analysis of genome sizes and karyotypes in Genlisea provides essential data for selection of suitable species for comparative

  3. Environmental RNAi in herbivorous insects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ivashuta, Sergey; Zhang, Yuanji; Wiggins, B Elizabeth; Ramaseshadri, Partha; Segers, Gerrit C; Johnson, Steven; Meyer, Steve E; Kerstetter, Randy A; McNulty, Brian C; Bolognesi, Renata; Heck, Gregory R

    2015-05-01

    Environmental RNAi (eRNAi) is a sequence-specific regulation of endogenous gene expression in a receptive organism by exogenous double-stranded RNA (dsRNA). Although demonstrated under artificial dietary conditions and via transgenic plant presentations in several herbivorous insects, the magnitude and consequence of exogenous dsRNA uptake and the role of eRNAi remains unknown under natural insect living conditions. Our analysis of coleopteran insects sensitive to eRNAi fed on wild-type plants revealed uptake of plant endogenous long dsRNAs, but not small RNAs. Subsequently, the dsRNAs were processed into 21 nt siRNAs by insects and accumulated in high quantities in insect cells. No accumulation of host plant-derived siRNAs was observed in lepidopteran larvae that are recalcitrant to eRNAi. Stability of ingested dsRNA in coleopteran larval gut followed by uptake and transport from the gut to distal tissues appeared to be enabling factors for eRNAi. Although a relatively large number of distinct coleopteran insect-processed plant-derived siRNAs had sequence complementarity to insect transcripts, the vast majority of the siRNAs were present in relatively low abundance, and RNA-seq analysis did not detect a significant effect of plant-derived siRNAs on insect transcriptome. In summary, we observed a broad genome-wide uptake of plant endogenous dsRNA and subsequent processing of ingested dsRNA into 21 nt siRNAs in eRNAi-sensitive insects under natural feeding conditions. In addition to dsRNA stability in gut lumen and uptake, dosage of siRNAs targeting a given insect transcript is likely an important factor in order to achieve measurable eRNAi-based regulation in eRNAi-competent insects that lack an apparent silencing amplification mechanism. © 2015 Ivashuta et al.; Published by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press for the RNA Society.

  4. Challenges in the nutrition and management of herbivores in the temperate zone

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vuuren, van A.M.; Chilibroste, P.

    2013-01-01

    The expected higher global demand for animal proteins and the competition for starch and sugars between food, fuel and feed seem to favour herbivores that convert solar energy captured in fibrous plants into animal products. However, the required higher production level of herbivores questions the

  5. Aboveground and belowground mammalian herbivores regulate the demography of deciduous woody species in conifer forests

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bryan A. Endress; Bridgett J. Naylor; Burak K. Pekin; Michael J. Wisdom

    2016-01-01

    Mammalian herbivory can have profound impacts on plant population and community dynamics. However, our understanding of specific herbivore effects remains limited, even in regions with high densities of domestic and wild herbivores, such as the semiarid conifer forests of western North America. We conducted a seven-year manipulative experiment to evaluate the effects...

  6. The Stoichiometry of Nutrient Release by Terrestrial Herbivores and Its Ecosystem Consequences

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Judith Sitters

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available It is widely recognized that the release of nutrients by herbivores via their waste products strongly impacts nutrient availability for autotrophs. The ratios of nitrogen (N and phosphorus (P recycled through herbivore release (i.e., waste N:P are mainly determined by the stoichiometric composition of the herbivore's food (food N:P and its body nutrient content (body N:P. Waste N:P can in turn impact autotroph nutrient limitation and productivity. Herbivore-driven nutrient recycling based on stoichiometric principles is dominated by theoretical and experimental research in freshwater systems, in particular interactions between algae and invertebrate herbivores. In terrestrial ecosystems, the impact of herbivores on nutrient cycling and availability is often limited to studying carbon (C:N and C:P ratios, while the role of terrestrial herbivores in mediating N:P ratios is also likely to influence herbivore-driven nutrient recycling. In this review, we use rules and predictions on the stoichiometry of nutrient release originating from algal-based aquatic systems to identify the factors that determine the stoichiometry of nutrient release by herbivores. We then explore how these rules can be used to understand the stoichiometry of nutrient release by terrestrial herbivores, ranging from invertebrates to mammals, and its impact on plant nutrient limitation and productivity. Future studies should focus on measuring both N and P when investigating herbivore-driven nutrient recycling in terrestrial ecosystems, while also taking the form of waste product (urine or feces and other pathways by which herbivores change nutrients into account, to be able to quantify the impact of waste stoichiometry on plant communities.

  7. Big cats in our backyards: persistence of large carnivores in a human dominated landscape in India.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vidya Athreya

    Full Text Available Protected areas are extremely important for the long term viability of biodiversity in a densely populated country like India where land is a scarce resource. However, protected areas cover only 5% of the land area in India and in the case of large carnivores that range widely, human use landscapes will function as important habitats required for gene flow to occur between protected areas. In this study, we used photographic capture recapture analysis to assess the density of large carnivores in a human-dominated agricultural landscape with density >300 people/km(2 in western Maharashtra, India. We found evidence of a wide suite of wild carnivores inhabiting a cropland landscape devoid of wilderness and wild herbivore prey. Furthermore, the large carnivores; leopard (Panthera pardus and striped hyaena (Hyaena hyaena occurred at relatively high density of 4.8±1.2 (sd adults/100 km(2 and 5.03±1.3 (sd adults/100 km(2 respectively. This situation has never been reported before where 10 large carnivores/100 km(2 are sharing space with dense human populations in a completely modified landscape. Human attacks by leopards were rare despite a potentially volatile situation considering that the leopard has been involved in serious conflict, including human deaths in adjoining areas. The results of our work push the frontiers of our understanding of the adaptability of both, humans and wildlife to each other's presence. The results also highlight the urgent need to shift from a PA centric to a landscape level conservation approach, where issues are more complex, and the potential for conflict is also very high. It also highlights the need for a serious rethink of conservation policy, law and practice where the current management focus is restricted to wildlife inside Protected Areas.

  8. Effects of large herbivores on grassland arthropod diversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Klink, R; van der Plas, F; van Noordwijk, C G E Toos; WallisDeVries, M F; Olff, H

    2015-05-01

    Both arthropods and large grazing herbivores are important components and drivers of biodiversity in grassland ecosystems, but a synthesis of how arthropod diversity is affected by large herbivores has been largely missing. To fill this gap, we conducted a literature search, which yielded 141 studies on this topic of which 24 simultaneously investigated plant and arthropod diversity. Using the data from these 24 studies, we compared the responses of plant and arthropod diversity to an increase in grazing intensity. This quantitative assessment showed no overall significant effect of increasing grazing intensity on plant diversity, while arthropod diversity was generally negatively affected. To understand these negative effects, we explored the mechanisms by which large herbivores affect arthropod communities: direct effects, changes in vegetation structure, changes in plant community composition, changes in soil conditions, and cascading effects within the arthropod interaction web. We identify three main factors determining the effects of large herbivores on arthropod diversity: (i) unintentional predation and increased disturbance, (ii) decreases in total resource abundance for arthropods (biomass) and (iii) changes in plant diversity, vegetation structure and abiotic conditions. In general, heterogeneity in vegetation structure and abiotic conditions increases at intermediate grazing intensity, but declines at both low and high grazing intensity. We conclude that large herbivores can only increase arthropod diversity if they cause an increase in (a)biotic heterogeneity, and then only if this increase is large enough to compensate for the loss of total resource abundance and the increased mortality rate. This is expected to occur only at low herbivore densities or with spatio-temporal variation in herbivore densities. As we demonstrate that arthropod diversity is often more negatively affected by grazing than plant diversity, we strongly recommend considering the

  9. Mycorrhizae Alter Toxin Sequestration and Performance of Two Specialist Herbivores

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amanda R. Meier

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Multitrophic species interactions are shaped by both top-down and bottom-up factors. Belowground symbionts of plants, such as arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF, can alter the strength of these forces by altering plant phenotype. For example, AMF-mediated changes in foliar toxin and nutrient concentrations may influence herbivore growth and fecundity. In addition, many specialist herbivores sequester toxins from their host plants to resist natural enemies, and the extent of sequestration varies with host plant secondary chemistry. Therefore, by altering plant phenotype, AMF may affect both herbivore performance and their resistance to natural enemies. We examined how inoculation of plants with AMF influences toxin sequestration and performance of two specialist herbivores feeding upon four milkweed species (Asclepias incarnata, A. curassavica, A. latifolia, A. syriaca. We raised aphids (Aphis nerii and caterpillars (Danaus plexippus on plants for 6 days in a fully factorial manipulation of milkweed species and level of AMF inoculation (zero, medium, and high. We then assessed aphid and caterpillar sequestration of toxins (cardenolides and performance, and measured defensive and nutritive traits of control plants. Aphids and caterpillars sequestered higher concentrations of cardenolides from plants inoculated with AMF across all milkweed species. Aphid per capita growth rates and aphid body mass varied non-linearly with increasing AMF inoculum availability; across all milkweed species, aphids had the lowest performance under medium levels of AMF availability and highest performance under high AMF availability. In contrast, caterpillar survival varied strongly with AMF availability in a plant species-specific manner, and caterpillar growth was unaffected by AMF. Inoculation with AMF increased foliar cardenolide concentrations consistently among milkweed species, but altered aboveground biomasses and foliar phosphorous concentrations in a plant

  10. Coupling mammalian demography to climate through satellite time series of plant phenology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stoner, D.; Sexton, J. O.; Nagol, J. R.; Ironside, K.; Choate, D.; Longshore, K.; Edwards, T., Jr.

    2016-12-01

    The seasonality of plant productivity governs the demography of primary and secondary consumers, and in arid ecosystems primary production is constrained by water availability. We relate the behavior, demography, and spatial distribution of large mammalian herbivores and their principal predator to remotely sensed indices of climate and vegetation across the western United States from 2000-2014. Terrain and plant community composition moderate the effects of climatological drought on primary productivity, resulting in spatial variation in ecosystem susceptibility to water stress. Herbivores track these patterns through habitat selection during key periods such as birthing and migration. Across a broad climatological gradient, timing of the start of growing season explains 75% of the variation in herbivore birth timing and 56% of the variation in neonatal survival rates. Initiation of autumn migration corresponds with the end of the growing season. Although indirectly coupled to primary production, carnivore home range size and population density are strongly correlated with plant productivity and growing-season length. Satellite measures of green reflectance during the peak of the growing season explain over 84% of the variation in carnivore home range size and 59% of the variation in density. Climate projections for the western United States predict warming temperatures and shifts in the timing and form of precipitation. Our analyses suggest that increased climatological variability will contribute to fluctuations in the composition and phenology of plant communities. These changes will propagate through consumer trophic levels, manifesting as increased home range area, shifts in the timing of migration, and greater volatility in large mammal populations. Combined with expansion and amplification of human land uses, these changes will likely have economic implications stemming from increased human-wildlife conflict and loss of ecosystem services.

  11. Hunting, Exotic Carnivores, and Habitat Loss: Anthropogenic Effects on a Native Carnivore Community, Madagascar

    OpenAIRE

    Farris, Zach J.; Golden, Christopher D.; Karpanty, Sarah; Murphy, Asia; Stauffer, Dean; Ratelolahy, Felix; Andrianjakarivelo, Vonjy; Holmes, Christopher M.; Kelly, Marcella J.

    2015-01-01

    The wide-ranging, cumulative, negative effects of anthropogenic disturbance, including habitat degradation, exotic species, and hunting, on native wildlife has been well documented across a range of habitats worldwide with carnivores potentially being the most vulnerable due to their more extinction prone characteristics. Investigating the effects of anthropogenic pressures on sympatric carnivores is needed to improve our ability to develop targeted, effective management plans for carnivore c...

  12. Aquatic herbivores facilitate the emission of methane from wetlands

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dingemans, B.J.J.; Bakker, E.S.; Bodelier, P.L.E.

    2011-01-01

    Wetlands are significant sources of atmospheric methane. Methane produced by microbes enters roots and escapes to the atmosphere through the shoots of emergent wetland plants. Herbivorous birds graze on helophytes, but their effect on methane emission remains unknown. We hypothesized that grazing on

  13. Effects of local tree diversity on herbivore communities diminish with increasing forest fragmentation on the landscape scale.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Franziska Peter

    Full Text Available Forest fragmentation and plant diversity have been shown to play a crucial role for herbivorous insects (herbivores, hereafter. In turn, herbivory-induced leaf area loss is known to have direct implications for plant growth and reproduction as well as long-term consequences for ecosystem functioning and forest regeneration. So far, previous studies determined diverging responses of herbivores to forest fragmentation and plant diversity. Those inconsistent results may be owed to complex interactive effects of both co-occurring environmental factors albeit they act on different spatial scales. In this study, we investigated whether forest fragmentation on the landscape scale and tree diversity on the local habitat scale show interactive effects on the herbivore community and leaf area loss in subtropical forests in South Africa. We applied standardized beating samples and a community-based approach to estimate changes in herbivore community composition, herbivore abundance, and the effective number of herbivore species on the tree species-level. We further monitored leaf area loss to link changes in the herbivore community to the associated process of herbivory. Forest fragmentation and tree diversity interactively affected the herbivore community composition, mainly by a species turnover within the family of Curculionidae. Furthermore, herbivore abundance increased and the number of herbivore species decreased with increasing tree diversity in slightly fragmented forests whereas the effects diminished with increasing forest fragmentation. Surprisingly, leaf area loss was neither affected by forest fragmentation or tree diversity, nor by changes in the herbivore community. Our study highlights the need to consider interactive effects of environmental changes across spatial scales in order to draw reliable conclusions for community and interaction patterns. Moreover, forest fragmentation seems to alter the effect of tree diversity on the herbivore

  14. Leaf Colour as a Signal of Chemical Defence to Insect Herbivores in Wild Cabbage (Brassica oleracea.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jonathan P Green

    Full Text Available Leaf colour has been proposed to signal levels of host defence to insect herbivores, but we lack data on herbivory, leaf colour and levels of defence for wild host populations necessary to test this hypothesis. Such a test requires measurements of leaf spectra as they would be sensed by herbivore visual systems, as well as simultaneous measurements of chemical defences and herbivore responses to leaf colour in natural host-herbivore populations. In a large-scale field survey of wild cabbage (Brassica oleracea populations, we show that variation in leaf colour and brightness, measured according to herbivore spectral sensitivities, predicts both levels of chemical defences (glucosinolates and abundance of specialist lepidopteran (Pieris rapae and hemipteran (Brevicoryne brassicae herbivores. In subsequent experiments, P. rapae larvae achieved faster growth and greater pupal mass when feeding on plants with bluer leaves, which contained lower levels of aliphatic glucosinolates. Glucosinolate-mediated effects on larval performance may thus contribute to the association between P. rapae herbivory and leaf colour observed in the field. However, preference tests found no evidence that adult butterflies selected host plants based on leaf coloration. In the field, B. brassicae abundance varied with leaf brightness but greenhouse experiments were unable to identify any effects of brightness on aphid preference or performance. Our findings suggest that although leaf colour reflects both levels of host defences and herbivore abundance in the field, the ability of herbivores to respond to colour signals may be limited, even in species where performance is correlated with leaf colour.

  15. Multi-factor climate change effects on insect herbivore performance

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Scherber, Christoph; Gladbach, David J; Stevnbak, Karen

    2013-01-01

    The impact of climate change on herbivorous insects can have far-reaching consequences for ecosystem processes. However, experiments investigating the combined effects of multiple climate change drivers on herbivorous insects are scarce. We independently manipulated three climate change drivers (CO...... suturalis Thomson), an important herbivore on heather, to ambient versus elevated drought, temperature, and CO2 (plus all combinations) for 5 weeks. Larval weight and survival were highest under ambient conditions and decreased significantly with the number of climate change drivers. Weight was lowest under...... the drought treatment, and there was a three-way interaction between time, CO2, and drought. Survival was lowest when drought, warming, and elevated CO2 were combined. Effects of climate change drivers depended on other co-acting factors and were mediated by changes in plant secondary compounds, nitrogen...

  16. Quantitative effects of cyanogenesis on an adapted herbivore.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ballhorn, D J; Heil, M; Pietrowski, A; Lieberei, R

    2007-12-01

    Plant cyanogenesis means the release of gaseous hydrogen cyanide (HCN) in response to cell damage and is considered as an effective defense against generalist herbivores. In contrast, specialists are generally believed not to be affected negatively by this trait. However, quantitative data on long-term effects of cyanogenesis on specialists are rare. In this study, we used lima bean accessions (Fabaceae: Phaseolus lunatus L.) with high quantitative variability of cyanogenic features comprising cyanogenic potential (HCNp; concentration of cyanogenic precursors) and cyanogenic capacities (HCNc; release of gaseous HCN per unit time). In feeding trials, we analyzed performance of herbivorous Mexican bean beetle (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae: Epilachna varivestis Mulsant) on selected lines characterized by high (HC-plants) and low HCNp (LC-plants). Larval and adult stages of this herbivore feed on a narrow range of legumes and prefer cyanogenic lima bean as host plant. Nevertheless, we found that performance of beetles (larval weight gain per time and body mass of adult beetles) was significantly affected by lima bean HCNp: Body weight decreased and developmental period of larvae and pupae increased on HC-plants during the first generation of beetles and then remained constant for four consecutive generations. In addition, we found continuously decreasing numbers of eggs and larval hatching as inter-generational effects on HC-plants. In contrast to HC-plants, constantly high performance was observed among four generations on LC-plants. Our results demonstrate that Mexican bean beetle, although preferentially feeding on lima bean, is quantitatively affected by the HCNp of its host plant. Effects can only be detected when considering more than one generation. Thus, cyanide-containing precursors can have negative effects even on herbivores adapted to feed on cyanogenic plants.

  17. Latitudinal Gradients in Induced and Constitutive Resistance against Herbivores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anstett, Daniel N; Chen, Wen; Johnson, Marc T J

    2016-08-01

    Plants are hypothesized to evolve increased defense against herbivores at lower latitudes, but an increasing number of studies report evidence that contradicts this hypothesis. Few studies have examined the evolution of constitutive and induced resistance along latitudinal gradients. When induction is not considered, underlying patterns of latitudinal clines in resistance can be obscured because plant resistance represents a combination of induced and constitutive resistance, which may show contrasting patterns with latitude. Here, we asked if there are latitudinal gradients in constitutive versus induced resistance by using genotypes of Oenothera biennis (Onagraceae) sampled along an 18° latitudinal gradient. We conducted two bioassay experiments to compare the resistance of plant genotypes against one generalist (Spodoptera exigua) and one specialist (Acanthoscelidius acephalus) herbivore. These insects were assayed on: i) undamaged control plants, ii) plants that had been induced with jasmonic acid, and iii) plants induced with herbivore damage. Additionally, we examined latitudinal gradients of constitutive and induced chemical resistance by measuring the concentrations of total phenolics, the concentration of oxidized phenolics, and the percentage of phenolics that were oxidized. Spodoptera exigua showed lower performance on plants from lower latitudes, whereas A. acephalus showed no latitudinal pattern. Constitutive total phenolics were greater in plants from lower latitudes, but induced plants showed higher total phenolics at higher latitudes. Oxidative activity was greatest at higher latitudes regardless of induction. Overall, both latitude and induction have an impact on different metrics of plant resistance to herbivory. Further studies should consider the effect of induction and herbivore specialization more explicitly, which may help to resolve the controversy in latitudinal gradients in herbivory and defense.

  18. Managing conflict between large carnivores and livestock.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Eeden, Lily M; Crowther, Mathew S; Dickman, Chris R; Macdonald, David W; Ripple, William J; Ritchie, Euan G; Newsome, Thomas M

    2018-02-01

    Large carnivores are persecuted globally because they threaten human industries and livelihoods. How this conflict is managed has consequences for the conservation of large carnivores and biodiversity more broadly. Mitigating human-predator conflict should be evidence-based and accommodate people's values while protecting carnivores. Despite much research into human and large-carnivore coexistence strategies, there have been few attempts to document the success of conflict-mitigation strategies on a global scale. We conducted a meta-analysis of global research on conflict mitigation related to large carnivores and humans. We focused on conflicts that arise from the threat large carnivores pose to livestock. We first used structured and unstructured searching to identify replicated studies that used before-after or control-impact design to measure change in livestock loss as a result of implementing a management intervention. We then extracted relevant data from these studies to calculate an overall effect size for each intervention type. Research effort and focus varied among continents and aligned with the histories and cultures that shaped livestock production and attitudes toward carnivores. Livestock guardian animals most effectively reduced livestock losses. Lethal control was the second most effective control, although its success varied the most, and guardian animals and lethal control did not differ significantly. Financial incentives have promoted tolerance of large carnivores in some settings and reduced retaliatory killings. We suggest coexistence strategies be location-specific, incorporate cultural values and environmental conditions, and be designed such that return on financial investment can be evaluated. Improved monitoring of mitigation measures is urgently required to promote effective evidence-based policy. © 2017 Society for Conservation Biology.

  19. Hunting, Exotic Carnivores, and Habitat Loss: Anthropogenic Effects on a Native Carnivore Community, Madagascar

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farris, Zach J.; Golden, Christopher D.; Karpanty, Sarah; Murphy, Asia; Stauffer, Dean; Ratelolahy, Felix; Andrianjakarivelo, Vonjy; Holmes, Christopher M.; Kelly, Marcella J.

    2015-01-01

    The wide-ranging, cumulative, negative effects of anthropogenic disturbance, including habitat degradation, exotic species, and hunting, on native wildlife has been well documented across a range of habitats worldwide with carnivores potentially being the most vulnerable due to their more extinction prone characteristics. Investigating the effects of anthropogenic pressures on sympatric carnivores is needed to improve our ability to develop targeted, effective management plans for carnivore conservation worldwide. Utilizing photographic, line-transect, and habitat sampling, as well as landscape analyses and village-based bushmeat hunting surveys, we provide the first investigation of how multiple forms of habitat degradation (fragmentation, exotic carnivores, human encroachment, and hunting) affect carnivore occupancy across Madagascar’s largest protected area: the Masoala-Makira landscape. We found that as degradation increased, native carnivore occupancy and encounter rates decreased while exotic carnivore occupancy and encounter rates increased. Feral cats (Felis species) and domestic dogs (Canis familiaris) had higher occupancy than half of the native carnivore species across Madagascar’s largest protected landscape. Bird and small mammal encounter rates were negatively associated with exotic carnivore occupancy, but positively associated with the occupancy of four native carnivore species. Spotted fanaloka (Fossa fossana) occupancy was constrained by the presence of exotic feral cats and exotic small Indian civet (Viverricula indica). Hunting was intense across the four study sites where hunting was studied, with the highest rates for the small Indian civet (x¯ = 90 individuals consumed/year), the ring-tailed vontsira (Galidia elegans) (x¯ = 58 consumed/year), and the fosa (Cryptoprocta ferox) (x¯ = 31 consumed/year). Our modeling results suggest hunters target intact forest where carnivore occupancy, abundance, and species richness, are

  20. Effects of herbivore exclosures on variation in quality and quantity of ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Effects of herbivore exclosures on variation in quality and quantity of plants among ... commercial and game) and among habitat types (open savanna, rocky and pan) in a semiarid savanna in South Africa. ... AJOL African Journals Online.

  1. NaJAZh Regulates a Subset of Defense Responses against Herbivores and Spontaneous Leaf Necrosis in Nicotiana attenuata Plants[C][W][OA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oh, Youngjoo; Baldwin, Ian T.; Gális, Ivan

    2012-01-01

    The JASMONATE ZIM DOMAIN (JAZ) proteins function as negative regulators of jasmonic acid signaling in plants. We cloned 12 JAZ genes from native tobacco (Nicotiana attenuata), including nine novel JAZs in tobacco, and examined their expression in plants that had leaves elicited by wounding or simulated herbivory. Most JAZ genes showed strong expression in the elicited leaves, but NaJAZg was mainly expressed in roots. Another novel herbivory-elicited gene, NaJAZh, was analyzed in detail. RNA interference suppression of this gene in inverted-repeat (ir)JAZh plants deregulated a specific branch of jasmonic acid-dependent direct and indirect defenses: irJAZh plants showed greater trypsin protease inhibitor activity, 17-hydroxygeranyllinalool diterpene glycosides accumulation, and emission of volatile organic compounds from leaves. Silencing of NaJAZh also revealed a novel cross talk in JAZ-regulated secondary metabolism, as irJAZh plants had significantly reduced nicotine levels. In addition, irJAZh spontaneously developed leaf necrosis during the transition to flowering. Because the lesions closely correlated with the elevated expression of programmed cell death genes and the accumulations of salicylic acid and hydrogen peroxide in the leaves, we propose a novel role of the NaJAZh protein as a repressor of necrosis and/or programmed cell death during plant development. PMID:22496510

  2. Impact of two specialist insect herbivores on reproduction of horse nettle, Solanum carolinense.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wise, Michael J; Sacchi, Christopher F

    1996-10-01

    The frequency of coevolution as a process of strong mutual interaction between a single plant and herbivore species has been questioned in light of more commonly observed, complex relationships between a plant and a suite of herbivore species. Despite recognition of the possibility of diffuse coevolution, relatively few studies have examined ecological responses of plants to herbivores in complex associations. We studied the impact of two specialist herbivores, the horse nettle beetle, Leptinotarsa juncta, and the eggplant flea beetle, Epitrix fuscula, on reproduction of their host, Solanum carolinense. Our study involved field and controlled-environment experimental tests of the impact on sexual and potential asexual reproduction of attack by individuals of the two herbivore species, individually and in combination. Field tests demonstrated that under normal levels of phytophagous insect attack, horse nettle plants experienced a reduction in fruit production of more than 75% compared with plants from which insects were excluded. In controlled-environment experiments using enclosure-exclosure cages, the horse nettle's two principal herbivores, the flea beetle and the horse nettle beetle, caused decreases in sexual reproduction similar to those observed in the field, and a reduction in potential asexual reproduction, represented by root biomass. Attack by each herbivore reduced the numbers of fruits produced, and root growth, when feeding in isolation. When both species were feeding together, fruit production, but not root growth, was lower than when either beetle species fed alone. Ecological interactions between horse nettle and its two primary herbivores necessary for diffuse coevolution to occur were evident from an overall analysis of the statistical interactions between the two herbivores for combined assessment of fruit and vegetative traits. For either of these traits alone, the interactions necessary to promote diffuse coevolution apparently were lacking.

  3. Intra- and interspecific differences in diet quality and composition in a large herbivore community.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claire Redjadj

    Full Text Available Species diversity in large herbivore communities is often explained by niche segregation allowed by differences in body mass and digestive morphophysiological features. Based on large number of gut samples in fall and winter, we analysed the temporal dynamics of diet composition, quality and interspecific overlap of 4 coexisting mountain herbivores. We tested whether the relative consumption of grass and browse differed among species of different rumen types (moose-type and intermediate-type, whether diet was of lower quality for the largest species, whether we could identify plant species which determined diet quality, and whether these plants, which could be "key-food-resources" were similar for all herbivores. Our analyses revealed that (1 body mass and rumen types were overall poor predictors of diet composition and quality, although the roe deer, a species with a moose-type rumen was confirmed as an "obligatory non grazer", while red deer, the largest species, had the most lignified diet; (2 diet overlap among herbivores was well predicted by rumen type (high among species of intermediate types only, when measured over broad plant groups, (3 the relationship between diet composition and quality differed among herbivore species, and the actual plant species used during winter which determined the diet quality, was herbivore species-specific. Even if diets overlapped to a great extent, the species-specific relationships between diet composition and quality suggest that herbivores may select different plant species within similar plant group types, or different plant parts and that this, along with other behavioural mechanisms of ecological niche segregation, may contribute to the coexistence of large herbivores of relatively similar body mass, as observed in mountain ecosystems.

  4. Indirect effects of domestic and wild herbivores on butterflies in an African savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilkerson, Marit L; Roche, Leslie M; Young, Truman P

    2013-10-01

    Indirect interactions driven by livestock and wild herbivores are increasingly recognized as important aspects of community dynamics in savannas and rangelands. Large ungulate herbivores can both directly and indirectly impact the reproductive structures of plants, which in turn can affect the pollinators of those plants. We examined how wild herbivores and cattle each indirectly affect the abundance of a common pollinator butterfly taxon, Colotis spp., at a set of long-term, large herbivore exclosure plots in a semiarid savanna in central Kenya. We also examined effects of herbivore exclusion on the main food plant of Colotis spp., which was also the most common flowering species in our plots: the shrub Cadaba farinosa. The study was conducted in four types of experimental plots: cattle-only, wildlife-only, cattle and wildlife (all large herbivores), and no large herbivores. Across all plots, Colotis spp. abundances were positively correlated with both Cadaba flower numbers (adult food resources) and total Cadaba canopy area (larval food resources). Structural equation modeling (SEM) revealed that floral resources drove the abundance of Colotis butterflies. Excluding browsing wildlife increased the abundances of both Cadaba flowers and Colotis butterflies. However, flower numbers and Colotis spp. abundances were greater in plots with cattle herbivory than in plots that excluded all large herbivores. Our results suggest that wild browsing herbivores can suppress pollinator species whereas well-managed cattle use may benefit important pollinators and the plants that depend on them. This study documents a novel set of ecological interactions that demonstrate how both conservation and livelihood goals can be met in a working landscape with abundant wildlife and livestock.

  5. Herbivore effects on productivity vary by guild: cattle increase mean productivity while wildlife reduce variability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Charles, Grace K; Porensky, Lauren M; Riginos, Corinna; Veblen, Kari E; Young, Truman P

    2017-01-01

    Wild herbivores and livestock share the majority of rangelands worldwide, yet few controlled experiments have addressed their individual, additive, and interactive impacts on ecosystem function. While ungulate herbivores generally reduce standing biomass, their effects on aboveground net primary production (ANPP) can vary by spatial and temporal context, intensity of herbivory, and herbivore identity and species richness. Some evidence indicates that moderate levels of herbivory can stimulate aboveground productivity, but few studies have explicitly tested the relationships among herbivore identity, grazing intensity, and ANPP. We used a long-term exclosure experiment to examine the effects of three groups of wild and domestic ungulate herbivores (megaherbivores, mesoherbivore wildlife, and cattle) on herbaceous productivity in an African savanna. Using both field measurements (productivity cages) and satellite imagery, we measured the effects of different herbivore guilds, separately and in different combinations, on herbaceous productivity across both space and time. Results from both productivity cage measurements and satellite normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) demonstrated a positive relationship between mean productivity and total ungulate herbivore pressure, driven in particular by the presence of cattle. In contrast, we found that variation in herbaceous productivity across space and time was driven by the presence of wild herbivores (primarily mesoherbivore wildlife), which significantly reduced heterogeneity in ANPP and NDVI across both space and time. Our results indicate that replacing wildlife with cattle (at moderate densities) could lead to similarly productive but more heterogeneous herbaceous plant communities in rangelands. © 2016 by the Ecological Society of America.

  6. Crop resistance traits modify the effects of an aboveground herbivore, brown planthopper, on soil microbial biomass and nematode community via changes to plant performance.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Huang, J.; Liu, M.; Chen, F.; Griffiths, B.S.; Chen, X.; Johnson, S.N.; Hu, F.

    2012-01-01

    Plant-mediated effects of aboveground herbivory on the belowground ecosystem are well documented, but less attention has been paid to agro-ecosystems and in particular how crop cultivars with different traits (i.e. resistance to pests) shape such interactions. A fully factorial experiment was

  7. Below-ground plant parts emit herbivore-induced volatiles: olfactory responses of a predatory mite to tulip bulbs infested by rust mites

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Aratchige, N.S.; Lesna, I.; Sabelis, M.W.

    2004-01-01

    Although odour-mediated interactions among plants, spider mites and predatory mites have been extensively studied above-ground, belowground studies are in their infancy. In this paper, we investigate whether feeding by rust mites (Aceria tulipae) cause tulip bulbs to produce odours that attract

  8. Protection against herbivores

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Howe, Gregg A.; Chen, Hui

    2017-10-25

    The present invention relates to genes, proteins and methods comprising molecules that alter amino acid levels. In one embodiment, the present invention relates to altering guanidino substrate hydrolysis activities in plants, arthropods and microorganisms using molecules within the arginase family and other molecules that alter an amino acid levels. In ones embodiment, the present invention relates to altering threonine substrate deamination and dehydration activities in plants, arthropods and microorganisms using molecules within the threonine deaminase family and other molecules that alter amino acid levels. In one embodiment, the present invention relates to using genes, proteins and methods comprising arginase or threonine deaminase for altering the pathophysiology of plants, arthropods and microorganisms. In a preferred embodiment, the present invention relates to altering guanidino substrate hydrolysis activity in plants, arthropods, and microorganisms using arginase. In another preferred embodiment, the invention relates to altering threonine substrated deamination and dehydration activity in plants, arthropods, and microorganisms using threonine deaminase. In some embodiments, the invention related to overexpression and increased activity of arginase, threonine deaminase and a proteinase inhibitor.

  9. Do herbivores eavesdrop on ant chemical communication to avoid predation?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David J Gonthier

    Full Text Available Strong effects of predator chemical cues on prey are common in aquatic and marine ecosystems, but are thought to be rare in terrestrial systems and specifically for arthropods. For ants, herbivores are hypothesized to eavesdrop on ant chemical communication and thereby avoid predation or confrontation. Here I tested the effect of ant chemical cues on herbivore choice and herbivory. Using Margaridisa sp. flea beetles and leaves from the host tree (Conostegia xalapensis, I performed paired-leaf choice feeding experiments. Coating leaves with crushed ant liquids (Azteca instabilis, exposing leaves to ant patrolling prior to choice tests (A. instabilis and Camponotus textor and comparing leaves from trees with and without A. instabilis nests resulted in more herbivores and herbivory on control (no ant-treatment relative to ant-treatment leaves. In contrast to A. instabilis and C. textor, leaves previously patrolled by Solenopsis geminata had no difference in beetle number and damage compared to control leaves. Altering the time A. instabilis patrolled treatment leaves prior to choice tests (0-, 5-, 30-, 90-, 180-min. revealed treatment effects were only statistically significant after 90- and 180-min. of prior leaf exposure. This study suggests, for two ecologically important and taxonomically diverse genera (Azteca and Camponotus, ant chemical cues have important effects on herbivores and that these effects may be widespread across the ant family. It suggests that the effect of chemical cues on herbivores may only appear after substantial previous ant activity has occurred on plant tissues. Furthermore, it supports the hypothesis that herbivores use ant chemical communication to avoid predation or confrontation with ants.

  10. Chemical defences against herbivores

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pavia, Henrik; Baumgartner, Finn; Cervin, Gunnar

    2012-01-01

    This chapter focuses on the recent and emerging research involving chemical defences against herbivory in aquatic primary producers. It provides an overview of plant chemical defence theories and highlights recent research on aquatic primary producers addressing a number of aspects...... of these theories, concluding with new chemical approaches to tackle the questions and suggestions for future research directions. It explains that aquatic primary producers are a taxonomically and functionally diverse group of organisms that includes macroalgae, microalgae, and vascular plants. It also states...... that despite the fact that aquatic primary producers constitute a large and diverse group of organisms that vary in their evolutionary histories, selection for chemical defences to resist or reduce grazing are commonplace across the phylogenetic boundaries....

  11. Large herbivores maintain termite-caused differences in herbaceous species diversity patterns.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Okullo, Paul; Moe, Stein R

    2012-09-01

    Termites and large herbivores affect African savanna plant communities. Both functional groups are also important for nutrient redistribution across the landscape. We conducted an experiment to study how termites and large herbivores, alone and in combination, affect herbaceous species diversity patterns in an African savanna. Herbaceous vegetation on large vegetated Macrotermes mounds (with and without large herbivores) and on adjacent savanna areas (with and without large herbivores) was monitored over three years in Lake Mburo National Park, Uganda. We found substantial differences in species richness, alpha diversity, evenness, and stability between termite mound herbaceous vegetation and adjacent savanna vegetation. Within months of fencing, levels of species richness, evenness, and stability were no longer significantly different between savanna and mounds. However, fencing reduced the cumulative number of species, particularly for forbs, of which 48% of the species were lost. Fencing increased the beta diversity (dissimilarity among plots) on the resource-poor (in terms of both nutrients and soil moisture) savanna areas, while it did not significantly affect beta diversity on the resource-rich termite mounds. While termites cause substantial heterogeneity in savanna vegetation, large herbivores further amplify these differences by reducing beta diversity on the savanna areas. Large herbivores are, however, responsible for the maintenance of a large number of forbs at the landscape level. These findings suggest that the mechanisms underlying the effects of termites and large herbivores on savanna plant communities scale up to shape community structure and dynamics at a landscape level.

  12. The effect of nitrogen additions on bracken fern and its insect herbivores at sites with high and low atmospheric pollution

    Science.gov (United States)

    M.E. Jones; M.E. Fenn; T.D. Paine

    2011-01-01

    The impact of atmospheric pollution, including nitrogen deposition, on bracken fern herbivores has never been studied. Bracken fern is globally distributed and has a high potential to accumulate nitrogen in plant tissue. We examined the response of bracken fern and its herbivores to N fertilization at a high and low pollution site in forests downwind of Los Angeles,...

  13. Satellite- versus temperature-derived green wave indices for predicting the timing of spring migration of avian herbivores

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Shariati Najafabadi, M.; Najafabadi, M.S.; Darvishzadeh, R.; Skidmore, A.K.; Kölzsch, Andrea; Vrieling, A.; Nolet, Bart A.; Exo, Klaus-Michael; Meratnia, Nirvana; Havinga, Paul J.M.; Stahl, Julia; Toxopeus, A.G.

    2015-01-01

    According to the green wave hypothesis, herbivores follow the flush of spring growth of forage plants during their spring migration to northern breeding grounds. In this study we compared two green wave indices for predicting the timing of the spring migration of avian herbivores: the

  14. Assessing the role of large herbivores in the structuring and functioning of freshwater and marine angiosperm ecosystems

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bakker, Elisabeth S.; Pagès, Jordi F.; Arthur, Rohan; Alcoverro, Teresa

    2016-01-01

    While large herbivores can have strong impacts on terrestrial ecosystems, much less is known of their role in aquatic systems. We reviewed the literature to determine: (1) which large herbivores (>10 kg) have a (semi-)aquatic lifestyle and are important consumers of submerged vascular plants, (2)

  15. Below-ground plant parts emit herbivore-induced volatiles: olfactory responses of a predatory mite to tulip bulbs infested by rust mites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aratchige, N S; Lesna, I; Sabelis, M W

    2004-01-01

    Although odour-mediated interactions among plants, spider mites and predatory mites have been extensively studied above-ground, belowground studies are in their infancy. In this paper, we investigate whether feeding by rust mites (Aceria tulipae) cause tulip bulbs to produce odours that attract predatory mites (Neoseiulus cucumeris). Since our aim was to demonstrate such odours and not their relevance under soil conditions, the experiments were carried out using a classic Y-tube olfactometer in which the predators moved on a Y-shaped wire in open air. We found that food-deprived female predators can discriminate between odours from infested bulbs and odours from uninfested bulbs or artificially wounded bulbs. No significant difference in attractiveness to predators was found between clean bulbs and bulbs either wounded 30 min or 3 h before the experiment. These results indicate that it may not be simply the wounding of the bulbs, but rather the feeding by rust mites, which causes the bulb to release odours that attract N. cucumeris. Since bulbs are belowground plant structures, the olfactometer results demonstrate the potential for odour-mediated interactions in the soil. However, their importance in the actual soil medium remains to be demonstrated.

  16. ASSESSING OF HERBIVOROUS AND BENEFICIAL INSECTS ON SWITCHGRASS IN UKRAINE.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stefanovska, T; Kucherovska, S; Pisdlisnyuk, V

    2014-01-01

    A perennial switchgrass, (Panicum virgatum L.), (C4) that is native to North America has good potential for biomass production because of its wide geographic distribution and adaptability to diverse environmental conditions. Insects can significantly impact the yield and quality of biofuel crops. If switchgrass are to be grown on marginally arable land or in monoculture, it are likely to be plagued with herbivore pests and plant diseases at a rate that exceeds what would be expected if the plants were not stressed in this manner. This biofuel crop has been under evaluation for commercial growing in Ukraine for eight years. However, insect diversity and the potential impact of pests on biomass production of this feedstock have not been accessed yet. The objective of our study, started in 2011, is a survey of switch grass insects by trophic groups and determine species that have pest status at two sites in the Central part of Ukraine (Kiev and Poltava regions). In Poltava site we investigated the effect of nine varieties of switchgrass (lowland and upland) to insects' diversity. We assessed changes over time in the densities of major insects' trophic groups, identifying potential pests and natural enemies. Obtained results indicates that different life stages of herbivorous insects from Hymenoptera, Homoptera, Diptera and Coleoptera orders were present on switchgrass during the growing season. Our study results suggests that choice of variety has an impact on trophic groups' structure and number of insects from different orders on swicthgrass. Herbivores and beneficial insects were the only groups that showed significant differences across sampling dates. The highest population of herbivores insects we recorded on 'Alamo' variety for studied years, although herbivore diversity tended to increase on 'Shelter', 'Alamo' and 'Cave-in-Rock' during 2012 and 2013. 'Dacotah', 'Nebraska', 'Sunburst', 'Forestburg' and 'Carthage' showed the highest level of beneficial insects

  17. Les Néandertaliens étaient-ils essentiellement carnivores ? Résultats préliminaires sur les teneurs en Sr et en Ba de la paléobiocénose mammalienne de Saint-CésaireWere Neandertalians essentially carnivores? Sr and Ba preliminary results of the mammalian palaeobiocoenosis of Saint-Césaire

    Science.gov (United States)

    Balter, Vincent; Person, Alain; Labourdette, Nathalie; Drucker, Dorothée; Renard, Maurice; Vandermeersch, Bernard

    2001-01-01

    Strontium-calcium (Sr/Ca) and barium-calcium (Ba/Ca) ratios are reduced constantly between diet and bioapatite in mammal organisms. This phenomenon leads to a reduction in the Sr/Ca and Ba/Ca ratios at higher trophic level in predator-prey mammalian communities, and is applied here to the reconstruction of a castelperronian food web, which includes a Neanderthal specimen. Adapted chemical pretreatment allows to isolate bioapatite from diagenetic compounds for analysis of Ca, Sr and Ba. Sr/Ca and Ba/Ca results of the fauna are consistent with trophic predictions. Initial results for the Neandertal suggest that he was mostly carnivorous. Distribution of Ba/Ca values of bones of herbivorous taxa reveals that ruminant animals can be distinguished from non-ruminants. The biosegregation model predicts that the diet of the Neandertal was composed by about 97 % in weight of meat with a weak contribution of vegetable or fish, and that the association of fish and plant is excluded in any proportion.

  18. Ecosystem Responses To Plant Phenology Across Scales And Trophic Levels

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stoner, D.; Sexton, J. O.; Nagol, J. R.; Ironside, K.; Choate, D.; Longshore, K.; Edwards, T., Jr.

    2015-12-01

    Plant phenology in arid and semi-arid ecoregions is constrained by water availability and governs the life history characteristics of primary and secondary consumers. We related the behavior, demography, and distribution of mammalian herbivores and their principal predator to remotely sensed vegetation and climatological indices across the western United States for the period 2000-2014. Across scales, terrain and topographic position moderates the effects of climatological drought on primary productivity, resulting in differential susceptibility among plant functional types to water stress. At broad scales, herbivores tie parturition to moist sites during the period of maximum increase in local forage production. Consequently, juvenile mortality is highest in regions of extreme phenological variability. Although decoupled from primary production by one or more trophic levels, carnivore home range size and density is negatively correlated to plant productivity and growing season length. At the finest scales, predation influences the behavior of herbivore prey through compromised habitat selection, in which maternal females trade nutritional benefits of high plant biomass for reduced mortality risk associated with increased visibility. Climate projections for the western United States predict warming combined with shifts in the timing and form of precipitation. Our analyses suggest that these changes will propagate through trophic levels as increased phenological variability and shifts in plant distributions, larger consumer home ranges, altered migration behavior, and generally higher volatility in wildlife populations. Combined with expansion and intensification of human land use across the region, these changes will likely have economic implications stemming from increased human-wildlife conflict (e.g., crop damage, vehicle collisions) and changes in wildlife-related tourism.

  19. Experimental evidence shows no fractionation of strontium isotopes ((87)Sr/(86)Sr) among soil, plants, and herbivores: implications for tracking wildlife and forensic science.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flockhart, D T Tyler; Kyser, T Kurt; Chipley, Don; Miller, Nathan G; Norris, D Ryan

    2015-01-01

    Strontium isotopes ((87)Sr/(86)Sr) can be useful biological markers for a wide range of forensic science applications, including wildlife tracking. However, one of the main advantages of using (87)Sr/(86)Sr values, that there is no fractionation from geological bedrock sources through the food web, also happens to be a critical assumption that has never been tested experimentally. We test this assumption by measuring (87)Sr/(86)Sr values across three trophic levels in a controlled greenhouse experiment. Adult monarch butterflies were raised on obligate larval host milkweed plants that were, in turn, grown on seven different soil types collected across Canada. We found no significant differences between (87)Sr/(86)Sr values in leachable Sr from soil minerals, organic soil, milkweed leaves, and monarch butterfly wings. Our results suggest that strontium isoscapes developed from (87)Sr/(86)Sr values in bedrock or soil may serve as a reliable biological marker in forensic science for a range of taxa and across large geographic areas.

  20. Time-scale effects in the interaction between a large and a small herbivore

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kuijper, D. P. J.; Beek, P.; van Wieren, S.E.; Bakker, J. P.

    2008-01-01

    In the short term, grazing will mainly affect plant biomass and forage quality. However, grazing can affect plant species composition by accelerating or retarding succession at longer time-scales. Few studies concerning interactions among herbivores have taken the change in plant species composition

  1. Interactions Between a Belowground Herbivore and Primary and Secondary Root Metabolites in Wild Cabbage

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Van Geem, Moniek; Harvey, J.A.; Cortesero, A.M.; Raaijmakers, C.E.; Gols, R.

    2015-01-01

    Plants are attacked by both above- and belowground herbivores. Toxic secondary compounds are part of the chemical defense arsenal of plants against a range of antagonists, and are subject to genetic variation. Plants also produce primary metabolites (amino acids, nutrients, sugars) that function as

  2. Patterns of Livestock Predation by Carnivores: Human-Wildlife Conflict in Northwest Yunnan, China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Xueyou; Buzzard, Paul; Chen, Yongchun; Jiang, Xuelong

    2013-12-01

    Alleviating human-carnivore conflict is central to large carnivore conservation and is often of economic importance, where people coexist with carnivores. In this article, we report on the patterns of predation and economic losses from wild carnivores preying on livestock in three villages of northern Baima Xueshan Nature Reserve, northwest Yunnan during a 2-year period between January 2010 and December 2011. We analyzed claims from 149 households that 258 head of livestock were predated. Wolves ( Canis lupus) were responsible for 79.1 % of livestock predation; Asiatic black bears ( Selenarctos thibetanus) and dholes ( Cuon alpinus) were the other predators responsible. Predation frequency varied between livestock species. The majority of livestock killed were yak-cattle hybrids or dzo (40.3 %). Wolves killed fewer cattle than expected, and more donkeys and horses than expected. Wolves and bears killed more adult female and fewer adult male livestock than expected. Intensified predation in wet season coincided with livestock being left to graze unattended in alpine meadows far away from villages. On average, carnivore attacks claimed 2.1 % of range stock annually. This predation represented an economic loss of 17 % (SD = 14 %) of the annual household income. Despite this loss and a perceived increase in carnivore conflict, a majority of the herders (66 %) still supported the reserve. This support is primarily due to the benefits from the collection of nontimber resources such as mushrooms and medicinal plants. Our study also suggested that improvement of husbandry techniques and facilities will reduce conflicts and contribute to improved conservation of these threatened predators.

  3. Early Cretaceous Archaeamphora is not a carnivorous angiosperm

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    William Oki Wong

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Archaeamphora longicervia H.Q.Li was described as an herbaceous, Sarraceniaceae-like pitcher plant from the mid Early Cretaceous Yixian Formation of Liaoning Province, northeastern China. Here, a re-investigation of A. longicervia specimens from the Yixian Formation provides new insights into its identity and the morphology of pitcher plants claimed by Li. We demonstrate that putative pitchers of Archaeamphora are insect-induced leaf galls that consist of three components: (1 an innermost larval chamber with a distinctive outer wall; (2 an intermediate zone of nutritive tissue; and (3 an outermost zone of sclerenchyma. Archaeamphora is not a carnivorous, Sarraceniaceae-like angiosperm, but represents insect-galled leaves of the formerly reported gymnosperm Liaoningocladus boii G.Sun et al. from the Yixian Formation.

  4. Triggering a false alarm: Wounding mimics prey capture in the carnivorous venus flytrap (dionaea muscipula)

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Pavlovič, A.; Jakšová, Jana; Novák, Ondřej

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 216, č. 3 (2017), s. 927-938 ISSN 0028-646X R&D Projects: GA MŠk(CZ) LO1204 Institutional support: RVO:61389030 Keywords : Action potential * Carnivorous plant * Defence * Digestive enzyme * Electrical signal * Jasmonic acid (JA) * Systemic response * Venus flytrap Subject RIV: EB - Genetics ; Molecular Biology OBOR OECD: Plant sciences, botany Impact factor: 7.330, year: 2016

  5. Impacts of human recreation on carnivores in protected areas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baker, Angela Darnell; Leberg, Paul L

    2018-01-01

    Mammalian carnivores can be particularly sensitive to human disturbance, even within protected areas (PAs). Our objective was to understand how human disturbance affects carnivore communities in southern Arizona, USA by studying habitat occupancy based on data collected using non-invasive methods in three PAs with different levels of human disturbance. Carnivore occupancy varied based on human disturbance variables (i.e., roads, trails, etc.). Common carnivore species (coyotes, gray foxes, and bobcats) had high occupancy probability in highly disturbed sites, while all other carnivore species had a higher probability of occupancy in low disturbance protected areas. Additionally, overall carnivore diversity was higher in PAs with low human disturbance. Edges of PAs appeared to negatively impact occupancy of nearly all carnivore species. We also found the presence of roads and trails, and not necessarily how much they are used, had a significant negative impact on the occupancy of most carnivore species. Furthermore, the overall level of disturbance within a PA influenced how sensitive carnivores were to human disturbance variables. Carnivores were more sensitive in PAs with higher levels of disturbance and were relatively unaffected by disturbance variables in a PA with low base levels of disturbance. Increased visitation to PAs, expected with the region's high level of population growth, is likely to cause shifts in the carnivore communities favoring species that are less sensitive to disturbance.

  6. Social interactions in a solitary carnivore

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    L.Mark ELBROCH; Howard QUIGLEY

    2017-01-01

    In total,177 of 245 terrestrial carnivores are described as solitary,and much of carnivore ecology is built on the assumptions that interactions between adult solitary carnivores are rare.We employed Global Positioning System (GPS) technology and motion-triggered cameras to test predictions of land-tenure territoriality and the resource dispersion hypothesis in a territorial carnivore,the puma Puma concolor.We documented 89 independent GPS interactions,60% of which occurred at puma kills (n=53),59 camera interactions,11 (17%) of which captured courtship behaviors,and 5 other interactions (1 F-F,3 M-F,and 1 M-M).Mean minimum weekly contact rates were 5.5 times higher in winter,the season when elk Cervus elaphus were aggregated at lower elevations and during which puma courtship primarily occurred.In winter,contacts rates were 0.6± 0.3 (standard deviation (SD)) interactions/week vs.0.1 ± 0.1 (SD) interactions/week during summer.The preponderance of interactions at food sources supported the resource dispersion hypothesis,which predicts that resource fluxes can explain temporary social behaviors that do not result in any apparent benefits for the individuals involved.Conspecific tolerance is logical when a prey is so large that the predator that killed it cannot consume it entirely,and thus,the costs of tolerating a conspecific sharing the kill are less than the potential costs associated with defending it and being injured.Puma aggregations at kills numbered as high as 9,emphasizing the need for future research on what explains tolerance among solitary carnivores.

  7. Conservation endocrinology: A noninvasive tool to understand relationships between carnivore colonization and ecological carrying capacity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berger, J.; Testa, J.W.; Roffe, T.; Monfort, S.L.

    1999-01-01

    Reproductive technology, especially the diagnosis of pregnancy by radioimmunoassay of fecal steroid metabolites, is an important component of captive propagation, but its role in our understanding of ecological interactions and in situ biological restoration has been more limited. Where large herbivores have been 'released' from predation by the extirpation of carnivores, controversy often exists about possible detrimental effects at the ecosystem level A related concern is that the reestablishment of large carnivores may decrease the availability of prey populations for human subsistence. We suggest that pregnancy assays can be a valuable tool to help distinguish between the roles of predation versus food-imposed limitations on population size and their effects on juvenile recruitment in wild species. We explored this issue through analyses of fecal progestagen concentration (FPC) levels to document pregnancy in moose (Alces alces) in the southern Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem, a site where wolves (Canis lupus) and grizzly bears (Ursus arctos) are recolonizing former habitats after an absence of more than 60 years. Pregnancy was clearly discernible (mean FPC for pregnant and nonpregnant females, respectively: 10.60 vs. 2.57 ??g/g; p endocrinology can be applied to issues involving reproductive events within an ecological context. They also affirm that noninvasive and generally inexpensive endocrinological procedures will be applicable to understanding interactions between recolonizing predators and prey, an issue that will continue to arise because of global restoration efforts, and to the study of rare ungulates in remote systems where data on reproductive events are difficult to obtain.

  8. Feeding niches of four large herbivores in the Hluhluwe Game ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Feeding niches of four large herbivores in the Hluhluwe Game Reserve, Natal. ... equus burchelli burchelli; feeding; grass; grasses; habitat; herbivores; hluhluwe game reserve; kwazulu-natal; large herbivores; ... AJOL African Journals Online.

  9. Migratory herbivorous waterfowl track satellite-derived green wave index.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mitra Shariatinajafabadi

    Full Text Available Many migrating herbivores rely on plant biomass to fuel their life cycles and have adapted to following changes in plant quality through time. The green wave hypothesis predicts that herbivorous waterfowl will follow the wave of food availability and quality during their spring migration. However, testing this hypothesis is hampered by the large geographical range these birds cover. The satellite-derived normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI time series is an ideal proxy indicator for the development of plant biomass and quality across a broad spatial area. A derived index, the green wave index (GWI, has been successfully used to link altitudinal and latitudinal migration of mammals to spatio-temporal variations in food quality and quantity. To date, this index has not been used to test the green wave hypothesis for individual avian herbivores. Here, we use the satellite-derived GWI to examine the green wave hypothesis with respect to GPS-tracked individual barnacle geese from three flyway populations (Russian n = 12, Svalbard n = 8, and Greenland n = 7. Data were collected over three years (2008-2010. Our results showed that the Russian and Svalbard barnacle geese followed the middle stage of the green wave (GWI 40-60%, while the Greenland geese followed an earlier stage (GWI 20-40%. Despite these differences among geese populations, the phase of vegetation greenness encountered by the GPS-tracked geese was close to the 50% GWI (i.e. the assumed date of peak nitrogen concentration, thereby implying that barnacle geese track high quality food during their spring migration. To our knowledge, this is the first time that the migration of individual avian herbivores has been successfully studied with respect to vegetation phenology using the satellite-derived GWI. Our results offer further support for the green wave hypothesis applying to long-distance migrants on a larger scale.

  10. Induced Jasmonate Signaling Leads to Contrasting Effects on Root Damage and Herbivore Performance1

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lu, Jing; Robert, Christelle Aurélie Maud; Riemann, Michael; Cosme, Marco; Mène-Saffrané, Laurent; Massana, Josep; Stout, Michael Joseph; Lou, Yonggen; Gershenzon, Jonathan; Erb, Matthias

    2015-01-01

    Induced defenses play a key role in plant resistance against leaf feeders. However, very little is known about the signals that are involved in defending plants against root feeders and how they are influenced by abiotic factors. We investigated these aspects for the interaction between rice (Oryza sativa) and two root-feeding insects: the generalist cucumber beetle (Diabrotica balteata) and the more specialized rice water weevil (Lissorhoptrus oryzophilus). Rice plants responded to root attack by increasing the production of jasmonic acid (JA) and abscisic acid, whereas in contrast to in herbivore-attacked leaves, salicylic acid and ethylene levels remained unchanged. The JA response was decoupled from flooding and remained constant over different soil moisture levels. Exogenous application of methyl JA to the roots markedly decreased the performance of both root herbivores, whereas abscisic acid and the ethylene precursor 1-aminocyclopropane-1-carboxylic acid did not have any effect. JA-deficient antisense 13-lipoxygenase (asLOX) and mutant allene oxide cyclase hebiba plants lost more root biomass under attack from both root herbivores. Surprisingly, herbivore weight gain was decreased markedly in asLOX but not hebiba mutant plants, despite the higher root biomass removal. This effect was correlated with a herbivore-induced reduction of sucrose pools in asLOX roots. Taken together, our experiments show that jasmonates are induced signals that protect rice roots from herbivores under varying abiotic conditions and that boosting jasmonate responses can strongly enhance rice resistance against root pests. Furthermore, we show that a rice 13-lipoxygenase regulates root primary metabolites and specifically improves root herbivore growth. PMID:25627217

  11. Utility of stable isotope analysis in studying foraging ecology of herbivores: Examples from moose and caribou

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ben-David, Merav; Shochat, Einav; Adams, Layne G.

    2001-01-01

    Recently, researchers emphasized that patterns of stable isotope ratios observed at the individual level are a result of an interaction between ecological, physiological, and biochemical processes. Isotopic models for herbivores provide additional complications because those mammals consume foods that have high variability in nitrogen concentrations. In addition, distribution of amino acids in plants may differ greatly from that required by a herbivore. At northern latitudes, where the growing season of vegetation is short, isotope ratios in herbivore tissues are expected to differ between seasons. Summer ratios likely reflect diet composition, whereas winter ratios would reflect diet and nutrient recycling by the animals. We tested this hypothesis using data collected from blood samples of caribou (Rangifer tarandus) and moose (Alces alces) in Denali National Park and Preserve, Alaska, USA. Stable isotope ratios of moose and caribou were significantly different from each other in late summer-autumn and winter. Also, late summer-autumn and winter ratios differed significantly between seasons in both species. Nonetheless, we were unable to evaluate whether differences in seasonal isotopic ratios were a result of diet selection or a response to nutrient recycling. We believe that additional studies on plant isotopic ratios as related to ecological factors in conjunction with investigations of diet selection by the herbivores will enhance our understanding of those interactions. Also, controlled studies investigating the relation between diet and physiological responses in herbivores will increase the utility of isotopic analysis in studying foraging ecology of herbivores.

  12. Termites, vertebrate herbivores, and the fruiting success of Acacia drepanolobium.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brody, Alison K; Palmer, Todd M; Fox-Dobbs, Kena; Doak, Dan F

    2010-02-01

    In African savannas, vertebrate herbivores are often identified as key determinants of plant growth, survivorship, and reproduction. However, plant reproduction is likely to be the product of responses to a suite of abiotic and biotic factors, including nutrient availability and interactions with antagonists and mutualists. In a relatively simple system, we examined the role of termites (which act as ecosystem engineers--modifying physical habitat and creating islands of high soil fertility), vertebrate herbivores, and symbiotic ants, on the fruiting success of a dominant plant, Acacia drepanolobium, in East African savannas. Using observational data, large-scale experimental manipulations, and analysis of foliar N, we found that Acacia drepanolobium trees growing at the edge of termite mounds were more likely to reproduce than those growing farther away, in off-mound soils. Although vertebrate herbivores preferentially used termite mounds as demonstrated by dung deposits, long-term exclusion of mammalian grazers did not significantly reduce A. drepanolobium fruit production. Leaf N was significantly greater in trees growing next to mounds than in those growing farther away, and this pattern was unaffected by exclusion of vertebrates. Thus, soil enrichment by termites, rather than through dung and urine deposition by large herbivores, is of primary importance to fruit production near mounds. Across all mound-herbivore treatment combinations, trees that harbored Crematogaster sjostedti were more likely to fruit than those that harbored one of the other three ant species. Although C. sjostedti is less aggressive than the other ants, it tends to inhabit large, old trees near termite mounds which are more likely to fruit than smaller ones. Termites play a key role in generating patches of nutrient-rich habitat important to the reproductive success of A. drepanolobium in East African savannas. Enhanced nutrient acquisition from termite mounds appears to allow plants to

  13. OsWRKY53, a versatile switch in regulating herbivore-induced defense responses in rice

    OpenAIRE

    Hu, Lingfei; Ye, Meng; Li, Ran; Lou, Yonggen

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT WRKY proteins, which belong to a large family of plant-specific transcription factors, play important roles in plant defenses against pathogens and herbivores by regulating defense-related signaling pathways. Recently, a rice WRKY transcription factor OsWRKY53 has been reported to function as a negative feedback modulator of OsMPK3/OsMPK6 and thereby to control the size of the investment a rice plant makes to defend against a chewing herbivore, the striped stem borer Chilo suppressal...

  14. Asian Eden : large herbivore ecology in India

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ahrestani, F.S.

    2009-01-01

    The study of large mammalian herbivore ecology has a strong allometric tradition. The
    majority of studies that have helped better understand how body mass affects large herbivore
    ecology in the tropics, from a biological, functional, and ecological perspective, are from
    Africa.

  15. Chemical ecology of insects and tritrophic interactions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ahmad, F.; Aslam, M.; Razaq, M.

    2004-01-01

    This paper reviews the chemical ecology of insects to explain the role of semiochemicals in plant-herbivore, herbivore-carnivore and plant-carnivore interactions. The semiochemical, mediating tritrophic interactions may be produced by plants, herbivores or their natural enemies (carnivores). Some semiochemicals attract the herbivores and carnivores and mediate interaction among them, while on the other hand some repel them. The semiochemicals are used by heribivores, parasites and predators as cues to locate food, host or prey. The same chemicals are also used for defensive purpose by some herbivores against their natural enemies as they are sequestered through their bodies. (author)

  16. Global climate change and above- belowground insect herbivore interactions.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Scott Wesley McKenzie

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Predicted changes to the Earth’s climate are likely to affect above-belowground interactions. Our understanding is limited, however, by past focus on two-species aboveground interactions mostly ignoring belowground influences. Despite their importance to ecosystem processes, there remains a dearth of empirical evidence showing how climate change will affect above-belowground interactions. The responses of above- and belowground organisms to climate change are likely to differ given the fundamentally different niches they inhabit. Yet there are few studies that address the biological and ecological reactions of belowground herbivores to environmental conditions in current and future climates. Even fewer studies investigate the consequences of climate change for above-belowground interactions between herbivores and other organisms; those that do provide no evidence of a directed response. This paper highlights the importance of considering the belowground fauna when making predictions on the effects of climate change on plant-mediated interspecific interactions.

  17. Does herbivorous fish protection really improve coral reef resilience? A case study from new caledonia (South Pacific).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carassou, Laure; Léopold, Marc; Guillemot, Nicolas; Wantiez, Laurent; Kulbicki, Michel

    2013-01-01

    Parts of coral reefs from New Caledonia (South Pacific) were registered at the UNESCO World Heritage list in 2008. Management strategies aiming at preserving the exceptional ecological value of these reefs in the context of climate change are currently being considered. This study evaluates the appropriateness of an exclusive fishing ban of herbivorous fish as a strategy to enhance coral reef resilience to hurricanes and bleaching in the UNESCO-registered areas of New Caledonia. A two-phase approach was developed: 1) coral, macroalgal, and herbivorous fish communities were examined in four biotopes from 14 reefs submitted to different fishing pressures in New Caledonia, and 2) results from these analyses were challenged in the context of a global synthesis of the relationship between herbivorous fish protection, coral recovery and relative macroalgal development after hurricanes and bleaching. Analyses of New Caledonia data indicated that 1) current fishing pressure only slightly affected herbivorous fish communities in the country, and 2) coral and macroalgal covers remained unrelated, and macroalgal cover was not related to the biomass, density or diversity of macroalgae feeders, whatever the biotope or level of fishing pressure considered. At a global scale, we found no relationship between reef protection status, coral recovery and relative macroalgal development after major climatic events. These results suggest that an exclusive protection of herbivorous fish in New Caledonia is unlikely to improve coral reef resilience to large-scale climatic disturbances, especially in the lightly fished UNESCO-registered areas. More efforts towards the survey and regulation of major chronic stress factors such as mining are rather recommended. In the most heavily fished areas of the country, carnivorous fish and large targeted herbivores may however be monitored as part of a precautionary approach.

  18. Are Tree Species Diversity and Genotypic Diversity Effects on Insect Herbivores Mediated by Ants?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    María José Campos-Navarrete

    Full Text Available Plant diversity can influence predators and omnivores and such effects may in turn influence herbivores and plants. However, evidence for these ecological feedbacks is rare. We evaluated if the effects of tree species (SD and genotypic diversity (GD on the abundance of different guilds of insect herbivores associated with big-leaf mahogany (Swietenia macrophylla were contingent upon the protective effects of ants tending extra-floral nectaries of this species. This study was conducted within a larger experiment consisting of mahogany monocultures and species polycultures of four species and -within each of these two plot types- mahogany was represented by either one or four maternal families. We selected 24 plots spanning these treatment combinations, 10 mahogany plants/plot, and within each plot experimentally reduced ant abundance on half of the selected plants, and surveyed ant and herbivore abundance. There were positive effects of SD on generalist leaf-chewers and sap-feeders, but for the latter group this effect depended on the ant reduction treatment: SD positively influenced sap-feeders under ambient ant abundance but had no effect when ant abundance was reduced; at the same time, ants had negative effects on sap feeders in monoculture but no effect in polyculture. In contrast, SD did not influence specialist stem-borers or leaf-miners and this effect was not contingent upon ant reduction. Finally, GD did not influence any of the herbivore guilds studied, and such effects did not depend on the ant treatment. Overall, we show that tree species diversity influenced interactions between a focal plant species (mahogany and ants, and that such effects in turn mediated plant diversity effects on some (sap-feeders but not all the herbivores guilds studied. Our results suggest that the observed patterns are dependent on the combined effects of herbivore identity, diet breadth, and the source of plant diversity.

  19. Moisture and nutrients determine the distribution and richness of India's large herbivore species assemblage

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ahrestani, F.S.; Heitkonig, I.M.A.; Langevelde, van F.; Vaidyanathan, S.; Madhusudan, M.D.; Prins, H.H.T.

    2011-01-01

    The goal of this study was to test whether body-mass based foraging principles, guided by plant available moisture (PAM) and plant available nutrients (PAN), could explain large mammalian herbivore species distribution and richness in India. We tested (1) whether the occurrence of larger-bodied

  20. Strategy of nitrogen acquisition and utilization by carnivorous Dionaea muscipula.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kruse, Jörg; Gao, Peng; Honsel, Anne; Kreuzwieser, Jürgen; Burzlaff, Tim; Alfarraj, Saleh; Hedrich, Rainer; Rennenberg, Heinz

    2014-03-01

    Plant carnivory represents an exceptional means to acquire N. Snap traps of Dionaea muscipula serve two functions, and provide both N and photosynthate. Using (13)C/(15)N-labelled insect powder, we performed feeding experiments with Dionaea plants that differed in physiological state and N status (spring vs. autumn plants). We measured the effects of (15)N uptake on light-saturated photosynthesis (A(max)), dark respiration (R(D)) and growth. Depending on N status, insect capture briefly altered the dynamics of R(D)/A(max), reflecting high energy demand during insect digestion and nutrient uptake, followed by enhanced photosynthesis and growth. Organic N acquired from insect prey was immediately redistributed, in order to support swift renewal of traps and thereby enhance probability of prey capture. Respiratory costs associated with permanent maintenance of the photosynthetic machinery were thereby minimized. Dionaea's strategy of N utilization is commensurate with the random capture of large prey, occasionally transferring a high load of organic nutrients to the plant. Our results suggest that physiological adaptations to unpredictable resource availability are essential for Dionaea's success with regards to a carnivorous life style.

  1. Herbivores rescue diversity in warming tundra by modulating trait-dependent species losses and gains.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaarlejärvi, Elina; Eskelinen, Anu; Olofsson, Johan

    2017-09-04

    Climate warming is altering the diversity of plant communities but it remains unknown which species will be lost or gained under warming, especially considering interactions with other factors such as herbivory and nutrient availability. Here, we experimentally test effects of warming, mammalian herbivory and fertilization on tundra species richness and investigate how plant functional traits affect losses and gains. We show that herbivory reverses the impact of warming on diversity: in the presence of herbivores warming increases species richness through higher species gains and lower losses, while in the absence of herbivores warming causes higher species losses and thus decreases species richness. Herbivores promote gains of short-statured species under warming, while herbivore removal and fertilization increase losses of short-statured and resource-conservative species through light limitation. Our results demonstrate that both rarity and traits forecast species losses and gains, and mammalian herbivores are essential for preventing trait-dependent extinctions and mitigate diversity loss under warming and eutrophication.Warming can reduce plant diversity but it is unclear which species will be lost or gained under interacting global changes. Kaarlejärvi et al. manipulate temperature, herbivory and nutrients in a tundra system and find that herbivory maintains diversity under warming by reducing species losses and promoting gains.

  2. Large herbivores surf waves of green-up during spring

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merkle, Jerod A.; Monteith, Kevin L.; Aikens, Ellen O.; Hayes, Matthew M.; Hersey, Kent R.; Middleton, Arthur D.; Oates, Brendan A.; Sawyer, Hall; Scurlock, Brandon M.; Kauffman, Matthew J.

    2016-01-01

    The green wave hypothesis (GWH) states that migrating animals should track or ‘surf’ high-quality forage at the leading edge of spring green-up. To index such high-quality forage, recent work proposed the instantaneous rate of green-up (IRG), i.e. rate of change in the normalized difference vegetation index over time. Despite this important advancement, no study has tested the assumption that herbivores select habitat patches at peak IRG. We evaluated this assumption using step selection functions parametrized with movement data during the green-up period from two populations each of bighorn sheep, mule deer, elk, moose and bison, totalling 463 individuals monitored 1–3 years from 2004 to 2014. Accounting for variables that typically influence habitat selection for each species, we found seven of 10 populations selected patches exhibiting high IRG—supporting the GWH. Nonetheless, large herbivores selected for the leading edge, trailing edge and crest of the IRG wave, indicating that other mechanisms (e.g. ruminant physiology) or measurement error inherent with satellite data affect selection for IRG. Our evaluation indicates that IRG is a useful tool for linking herbivore movement with plant phenology, paving the way for significant advancements in understanding how animals track resource quality that varies both spatially and temporally.

  3. Firing and Resetting Characteristics of Carnivorous Utricularia reflexa Traps: Physiological or only Physical Regulation of Trap Triggering?

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Adamec, Lubomír

    Roč. 52, č. 2 ( 2012 ), 281-290 ISSN 0079-2047 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GAP504/11/0783 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516 Institutional support: RVO:67985939 Keywords : aquatic carnivorous plants * water flow * ether Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 0.435, year: 2012

  4. Toxicity of a furanocoumarin to armyworms: a case of biosynthetic escape from insect herbivores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berenbaum, M

    1978-08-11

    When the linear furanocoumarin xanthotoxin, found in many plants of the families Rutaceae and Umbelliferae, was administered to larvae of Spodoptera eridania, a generalist insect herbivore, it displayed toxic properties lacking in its biosynthetic precursor umbelliferone. Reduced toxicity observed in the absence of ultraviolet light is consistent with the known mechanism of photoinactivation of DNA by furanocoumarins through ultraviolet-catalyzed cross-linkage of strands. Thus, the ability of a plant to convert umbelliferone to linear furanocoumarins appears to confer broader protection against insect herbivores.

  5. Density-dependent reduction and induction of milkweed cardenolides by a sucking insect herbivore.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martel, John W; Malcolm, Stephen B

    2004-03-01

    The effect of aphid population size on host-plant chemical defense expression and the effect of plant defense on aphid population dynamics were investigated in a milkweed-specialist herbivore system. Density effects of the aposematic oleander aphid, Aphis nerii, on cardenolide expression were measured in two milkweed species, Asclepias curassavica and A. incarnata. These plants vary in constitutive chemical investment with high mean cardenolide concentration in A. curassavica and low to zero in A. incarnata. The second objective was to determine whether cardenolide expression in these two host plants impacts mean A. nerii colony biomass (mg) and density. Cardenolide concentration (microgram/g) of A. curassavica in both aphid-treated leaves and opposite, herbivore-free leaves decreased initially in comparison with aphid-free controls, and then increased significantly with A. nerii density. Thus, A. curassavica responds to aphid herbivory initially with density-dependent phytochemical reduction, followed by induction of cardenolides to concentrations above aphid-free controls. In addition, mean cardenolide concentration of aphid-treated leaves was significantly higher than that of opposite, herbivore-free leaves. Therefore, A. curassavica induction is strongest in herbivore-damage tissue. Conversely, A. incarnata exhibited no such chemical response to aphid herbivory. Furthermore, neither host plant responded chemically to herbivore feeding duration time (days) or to the interaction between herbivore initial density and feeding duration time. There were also no significant differences in mean colony biomass or population density of A. nerii reared on high cardenolide (A. curassavica) and low cardenolide (A. incarnata) hosts.

  6. Combined influence of Bt rice and rice dwarf virus on biological parameters of a non-target herbivore, Nephotettix cincticeps (Uhler) (Hemiptera: Cicadellidae)

    Science.gov (United States)

    The advent of genetically modified (GM) Bt rice creates the possibility of interactions among Bt crops, crop pathogens and non-target herbivores. In particular, information on how pathogen-infected Bt-expressing plants will influence non-target herbivores is necessary to predict the sustainability o...

  7. OsWRKY53, a versatile switch in regulating herbivore-induced defense responses in rice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Lingfei; Ye, Meng; Li, Ran; Lou, Yonggen

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT WRKY proteins, which belong to a large family of plant-specific transcription factors, play important roles in plant defenses against pathogens and herbivores by regulating defense-related signaling pathways. Recently, a rice WRKY transcription factor OsWRKY53 has been reported to function as a negative feedback modulator of OsMPK3/OsMPK6 and thereby to control the size of the investment a rice plant makes to defend against a chewing herbivore, the striped stem borer Chilo suppressalis. We investigated the performance of a piecing-sucking herbivore, the brown planthopper (BPH) Nilaparvata lugens, on transgenic plants that silence or overexpress OsWRKY53, and found that OsWRKY53 activates rice defenses against BPH by activating an H2O2 burst and suppressing ethylene biosynthesis. These findings suggest that OsWRKY53 functions not only as a regulator of plants' investment in specific defenses, but also as a switch to initiate new defenses against other stresses, highlighting the versatility and importance of OsWRKY53 in herbivore-induced plant defenses. PMID:27031005

  8. Limited dietary overlap amongst resident Arctic herbivores in winter: complementary insights from complementary methods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmidt, Niels M; Mosbacher, Jesper B; Vesterinen, Eero J; Roslin, Tomas; Michelsen, Anders

    2018-04-26

    Snow may prevent Arctic herbivores from accessing their forage in winter, forcing them to aggregate in the few patches with limited snow. In High Arctic Greenland, Arctic hare and rock ptarmigan often forage in muskox feeding craters. We therefore hypothesized that due to limited availability of forage, the dietary niches of these resident herbivores overlap considerably, and that the overlap increases as winter progresses. To test this, we analyzed fecal samples collected in early and late winter. We used molecular analysis to identify the plant taxa consumed, and stable isotope ratios of carbon and nitrogen to quantify the dietary niche breadth and dietary overlap. The plant taxa found indicated only limited dietary differentiation between the herbivores. As expected, dietary niches exhibited a strong contraction from early to late winter, especially for rock ptarmigan. This may indicate increasing reliance on particular plant resources as winter progresses. In early winter, the diet of rock ptarmigan overlapped slightly with that of muskox and Arctic hare. Contrary to our expectations, no inter-specific dietary niche overlap was observed in late winter. This overall pattern was specifically revealed by combined analysis of molecular data and stable isotope contents. Hence, despite foraging in the same areas and generally feeding on the same plant taxa, the quantitative dietary overlap between the three herbivores was limited. This may be attributable to species-specific consumption rates of plant taxa. Yet, Arctic hare and rock ptarmigan may benefit from muskox opening up the snow pack, thereby allowing them to access the plants.

  9. Herbivores sculpt leaf traits differently in grasslands depending on life form and land-use histories.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Firn, Jennifer; Schütz, Martin; Nguyen, Huong; Risch, Anita C

    2017-01-01

    Vertebrate and invertebrate herbivores alter plant communities directly by selectively consuming plant species; and indirectly by inducing morphological and physiological changes to plant traits that provide competitive or survivorship advantages to some life forms over others. Progressively excluding aboveground herbivore communities (ungulates, medium and small sized mammals, invertebrates) over five growing seasons, we explored how leaf morphology (specific leaf area or SLA) and nutrition (nitrogen, carbon, phosphorous, potassium, sodium, and calcium) of different plant life forms (forbs, legumes, grasses, sedges) correlated with their dominance. We experimented in two subalpine grassland types with different land-use histories: (1) heavily grazed, nutrient-rich, short-grass vegetation and (2) lightly grazed, lower nutrient tall-grass vegetation. We found differences in leaf traits between treatments where either all herbivores were excluded or all herbivores were present, showing the importance of considering the impacts of both vertebrates and invertebrates on the leaf traits of plant species. Life forms responses to the progressive exclusion of herbivores were captured by six possible combinations: (1) increased leaf size and resource use efficiency (leaf area/nutrients) where lower nutrient levels are invested in leaf construction, but a reduction in the number of leaves, for example, forbs in both vegetation types, (2) increased leaf size and resource use efficiency, for example, legumes in short grass, (3) increased leaf size but a reduction in the number of leaves, for example, legumes in the tall grass, (4) increased number of leaves produced and increased resource use efficiency, for example, grasses in the short grass, (5) increased resource use efficiency of leaves only, for example, grasses and sedges in the tall grass, and (6) no response in terms of leaf construction or dominance, for example, sedges in the short grass. Although we found multiple

  10. Variation in plant-mediated interactions between rhizobacteria and caterpillars: potential role of soil composition

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pangesti, N.P.D.; Pineda Gomez, A.M.; Dicke, M.; Loon, van J.J.A.

    2015-01-01

    Selected strains of non-pathogenic rhizobacteria can trigger induced systemic resistance (ISR) in plants against aboveground insect herbivores. However, the underlying mechanisms of plant-mediated interactions between rhizobacteria and herbivorous insects are still poorly understood. Using

  11. Do multiple herbivores maintain chemical diversity of Scots pine monoterpenes?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iason, Glenn R.; O'Reilly-Wapstra, Julianne M.; Brewer, Mark J.; Summers, Ron W.; Moore, Ben D.

    2011-01-01

    A central issue in our understanding of the evolution of the diversity of plant secondary metabolites (PSMs) is whether or not compounds are functional, conferring an advantage to the plant, or non-functional. We examine the hypothesis that the diversity of monoterpene PSMs within a plant species (Scots pine Pinus sylvestris) may be explained by different compounds acting as defences against high-impact herbivores operating at different life stages. We also hypothesize that pairwise coevolution, with uncorrelated interactions, is more likely to result in greater PSM diversity, than diffuse coevolution. We tested whether up to 13 different monoterpenes in Scots pine were inhibitory to herbivory by slugs (Arion ater), bank voles (Clethrionomys glareolus), red deer (Cervus elaphus) and capercaillie (Tetrao urogallus), each of which attack trees at a different life stage. Plants containing more α-pinene were avoided by both slugs and capercaillie, which may act as reinforcing selective agents for this dominant defensive compound. Herbivory by red deer and capercaillie were, respectively, weakly negatively associated with δ3-carene, and strongly negatively correlated with the minor compound β-ocimene. Three of the four herbivores are probably contributory selective agents on some of the terpenes, and thus maintain some, but by no means all, of the phytochemical diversity in the species. The correlated defensive function of α-pinene against slugs and capercaillie is consistent with diffuse coevolutionary processes. PMID:21444308

  12. Wild carnivores (Mammalia) as hosts for ticks (Ixodida) in Panama

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bermudez, S.E.; Esser, H.J.; Miranda, R.; Moreno, R.S.

    2015-01-01

    This study reports ticks collected from wild carnivores from different habitat types in Panama. We examined 94 individual wild carnivores and we found 87 parasitized by ticks: seven coyotes, six crab-eating foxes, 54 coatis, four raccoons, five ocelots, two pumas, two gray foxes, two skunks, and one

  13. Human behaviour can trigger large carnivore attacks in developed countries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Penteriani, Vincenzo; Delgado, María del Mar; Pinchera, Francesco; Naves, Javier; Fernández-Gil, Alberto; Kojola, Ilpo; Härkönen, Sauli; Norberg, Harri; Frank, Jens; Fedriani, José María; Sahlén, Veronica; Støen, Ole-Gunnar; Swenson, Jon E; Wabakken, Petter; Pellegrini, Mario; Herrero, Stephen; López-Bao, José Vicente

    2016-02-03

    The media and scientific literature are increasingly reporting an escalation of large carnivore attacks on humans in North America and Europe. Although rare compared to human fatalities by other wildlife, the media often overplay large carnivore attacks on humans, causing increased fear and negative attitudes towards coexisting with and conserving these species. Although large carnivore populations are generally increasing in developed countries, increased numbers are not solely responsible for the observed rise in the number of attacks by large carnivores. Here we show that an increasing number of people are involved in outdoor activities and, when doing so, some people engage in risk-enhancing behaviour that can increase the probability of a risky encounter and a potential attack. About half of the well-documented reported attacks have involved risk-enhancing human behaviours, the most common of which is leaving children unattended. Our study provides unique insight into the causes, and as a result the prevention, of large carnivore attacks on people. Prevention and information that can encourage appropriate human behaviour when sharing the landscape with large carnivores are of paramount importance to reduce both potentially fatal human-carnivore encounters and their consequences to large carnivores.

  14. Large herbivore population performance and climate in a South African semi-arid savanna

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Armin H. Seydack

    2012-02-01

    Interpretation according to a climate–vegetation response model suggested that acclimation of forage plants to increasing temperature had resulted in temperature-enhanced plant productivity, initially increasing food availability and supporting transient synchronous increases in population abundance of both blue wildebeest and zebra, and selective grazers. As acclimation of plants to concurrently rising minimum (nocturnal temperature (Tmin took effect, adjustments in metabolic functionality occurred involving accelerated growth activity at the cost of storage-based metabolism. Growth-linked nitrogen dilution and reduced carbon-nutrient quality of forage then resulted in phases of subsequently declining herbivore populations. Over the long term (1910–2010, progressive plant functionality shifts towards accelerated metabolic growth rather than storage priority occurred in response to Tmin rising faster than maximum temperature (Tmax, thereby cumulatively compromising the carbon-nutrient quality of forage, a key resource for selective grazers. The results of analyses thus revealed consistency between herbivore population trends and levels of forage quantity and quality congruent with expected plant metabolic responses to climate effects. Thus, according to the climate-vegetation response model, climate effects were implicated as the ultimate cause of large herbivore population performance in space and over time. Conservation implications: In its broadest sense, the objective of this study was to contribute towards the enhanced understanding of landscape-scale functioning of savanna systems with regard to the interplay between climate, vegetation and herbivore population dynamics.

  15. Review - Host specificity of insect herbivores in tropical forests

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Novotný, Vojtěch; Basset, Y.

    2005-01-01

    Roč. 272, č. 1568 (2005), s. 1083-1090 ISSN 0962-8452 R&D Projects: GA AV ČR(CZ) IAA6007106; GA ČR(CZ) GD206/03/H034; GA ČR(CZ) GA206/04/0725; GA MŠk(CZ) ME 646 Grant - others:US Nationals Science Foundation(US) DEB-02-11591; Darwin Initiative for the Survival of Species(US) 162/10/030 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50070508 Keywords : food web * herbivore guild * host plant range Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 3.510, year: 2005

  16. Cats and Carbohydrates: The Carnivore Fantasy?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adronie Verbrugghe

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available The domestic cat’s wild ancestors are obligate carnivores that consume prey containing only minimal amounts of carbohydrates. Evolutionary events adapted the cat’s metabolism and physiology to this diet strictly composed of animal tissues and led to unique digestive and metabolic peculiarities of carbohydrate metabolism. The domestic cat still closely resembles its wild ancestor. Although the carnivore connection of domestic cats is well recognised, little is known about the precise nutrient profile to which the digestive physiology and metabolism of the cat have adapted throughout evolution. Moreover, studies show that domestic cats balance macronutrient intake by selecting low-carbohydrate foods. The fact that cats evolved consuming low-carbohydrate prey has led to speculations that high-carbohydrate diets could be detrimental for a cat’s health. More specifically, it has been suggested that excess carbohydrates could lead to feline obesity and diabetes mellitus. Additionally, the chances for remission of diabetes mellitus are higher in cats that consume a low-carbohydrate diet. This literature review will summarise current carbohydrate knowledge pertaining to digestion, absorption and metabolism of carbohydrates, food selection and macronutrient balancing in healthy, obese and diabetic cats, as well as the role of carbohydrates in prevention and treatment of obesity and diabetes mellitus.

  17. The evolution of intelligence in mammalian carnivores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holekamp, Kay E; Benson-Amram, Sarah

    2017-06-06

    Although intelligence should theoretically evolve to help animals solve specific types of problems posed by the environment, it is unclear which environmental challenges favour enhanced cognition, or how general intelligence evolves along with domain-specific cognitive abilities. The social intelligence hypothesis posits that big brains and great intelligence have evolved to cope with the labile behaviour of group mates. We have exploited the remarkable convergence in social complexity between cercopithecine primates and spotted hyaenas to test predictions of the social intelligence hypothesis in regard to both cognition and brain size. Behavioural data indicate that there has been considerable convergence between primates and hyaenas with respect to their social cognitive abilities. Moreover, compared with other hyaena species, spotted hyaenas have larger brains and expanded frontal cortex, as predicted by the social intelligence hypothesis. However, broader comparative study suggests that domain-general intelligence in carnivores probably did not evolve in response to selection pressures imposed specifically in the social domain. The cognitive buffer hypothesis, which suggests that general intelligence evolves to help animals cope with novel or changing environments, appears to offer a more robust explanation for general intelligence in carnivores than any hypothesis invoking selection pressures imposed strictly by sociality or foraging demands.

  18. Cardenolides, induced responses, and interactions between above- and belowground herbivores of milkweed (Asclepias spp.).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rasmann, Sergio; Agrawal, Anurag A; Cook, Susan C; Erwin, Alexis C

    2009-09-01

    Theory has long predicted allocation patterns for plant defense against herbivory, but only recently have both above- and belowground plant defenses been considered simultaneously. Milkweeds in the genus Asclepias are a classic chemically defended clade of plants with toxic cardenolides (cardiac glycosides) and pressurized latex employed as anti-herbivore weapons. Here we combine a comparative approach to investigate broadscale patterns in allocation to root vs. shoot defenses across species with a species-specific experimental approach to identify the consequences of defense allocational shifts on a specialist herbivore. Our results show phylogenetic conservatism for inducibility of shoot cardenolides by an aboveground herbivore, with only four closely related tropical species showing significant induction; the eight temperate species examined were not inducible. Allocation to root and shoot cardenolides was positively correlated across species, and this relationship was maintained after accounting for phylogenetic nonindependence. In contrast to long-standing theoretical predictions, we found no evidence for a trade-off between constitutive and induced cardenolides;