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Sample records for wild african herbivores

  1. 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.

  2. Variation in faecal water content may confound estimates of gastro-intestinal parasite intensity in wild African herbivores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turner, W C; Cizauskas, C A; Getz, W M

    2010-03-01

    Estimates of parasite intensity within host populations are essential for many studies of host-parasite relationships. Here we evaluated the seasonal, age- and sex-related variability in faecal water content for two wild ungulate species, springbok (Antidorcas marsupialis) and plains zebra (Equus quagga). We then assessed whether or not faecal water content biased conclusions regarding differences in strongyle infection rates by season, age or sex. There was evidence of significant variation in faecal water content by season and age for both species, and by sex in springbok. Analyses of faecal egg counts demonstrated that sex was a near-significant factor in explaining variation in strongyle parasite infection rates in zebra (P = 0.055) and springbok (P = 0.052) using wet-weight faecal samples. However, once these intensity estimates were re-scaled by the percent of dry matter in the faeces, sex was no longer a significant factor (zebra, P = 0.268; springbok, P = 0.234). These results demonstrate that variation in faecal water content may confound analyses and could produce spurious conclusions, as was the case with host sex as a factor in the analysis. We thus recommend that researchers assess whether water variation could be a confounding factor when designing and performing research using faecal indices of parasite intensity.

  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. 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.

  5. Recovery of African wild dogs suppresses prey but does not trigger a trophic cascade

    Science.gov (United States)

    Large carnivores can powerfully shape ecosystems by directly suppressing herbivores, thereby indirectly benefitting plants in a process known as a trophic cascade. In 2002, after a 20-year absence, African wild dogs (Lycaon pictus) recolonized the Laikipia Plateau in central Kenya. We hypothesized t...

  6. Habitat Heterogeneity Variably Influences Habitat Selection by Wild Herbivores in a Semi-Arid Tropical Savanna Ecosystem.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Victor K Muposhi

    Full Text Available An understanding of the habitat selection patterns by wild herbivores is critical for adaptive management, particularly towards ecosystem management and wildlife conservation in semi arid savanna ecosystems. We tested the following predictions: (i surface water availability, habitat quality and human presence have a strong influence on the spatial distribution of wild herbivores in the dry season, (ii habitat suitability for large herbivores would be higher compared to medium-sized herbivores in the dry season, and (iii spatial extent of suitable habitats for wild herbivores will be different between years, i.e., 2006 and 2010, in Matetsi Safari Area, Zimbabwe. MaxEnt modeling was done to determine the habitat suitability of large herbivores and medium-sized herbivores. MaxEnt modeling of habitat suitability for large herbivores using the environmental variables was successful for the selected species in 2006 and 2010, except for elephant (Loxodonta africana for the year 2010. Overall, large herbivores probability of occurrence was mostly influenced by distance from rivers. Distance from roads influenced much of the variability in the probability of occurrence of medium-sized herbivores. The overall predicted area for large and medium-sized herbivores was not different. Large herbivores may not necessarily utilize larger habitat patches over medium-sized herbivores due to the habitat homogenizing effect of water provisioning. Effect of surface water availability, proximity to riverine ecosystems and roads on habitat suitability of large and medium-sized herbivores in the dry season was highly variable thus could change from one year to another. We recommend adaptive management initiatives aimed at ensuring dynamic water supply in protected areas through temporal closure and or opening of water points to promote heterogeneity of wildlife habitats.

  7. Intrinsic and extrinsic factors influencing large African herbivore movements

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Venter, J.A.; Prins, H.H.T.; Mashanova, A.; Boer, de W.F.; Slotow, R.

    2015-01-01

    Understanding environmental as well as anthropogenic factors that influence large herbivore ecological patterns and processes should underpin their conservation and management. We assessed the influence of intrinsic, extrinsic environmental and extrinsic anthropogenic factors on movement behaviour

  8. Behavioral adjustments of African herbivores to predation risk by lions: spatiotemporal variations influence habitat use.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valeix, M; Loveridge, A J; Chamaillé-Jammes, S; Davidson, Z; Murindagomo, F; Fritz, H; Macdonald, D W

    2009-01-01

    Predators may influence their prey populations not only through direct lethal effects, but also through indirect behavioral changes. Here, we combined spatiotemporal fine-scale data from GPS radio collars on lions with habitat use information on 11 African herbivores in Hwange National Park (Zimbabwe) to test whether the risk of predation by lions influenced the distribution of herbivores in the landscape. Effects of long-term risk of predation (likelihood of lion presence calculated over four months) and short-term risk of predation (actual presence of lions in the vicinity in the preceding 24 hours) were contrasted. The long-term risk of predation by lions appeared to influence the distributions of all browsers across the landscape, but not of grazers. This result strongly suggests that browsers and grazers, which face different ecological constraints, are influenced at different spatial and temporal scales in the variation of the risk of predation by lions. The results also show that all herbivores tend to use more open habitats preferentially when lions are in their vicinity, probably an effective anti-predator behavior against such an ambush predator. Behaviorally induced effects of lions may therefore contribute significantly to structuring African herbivore communities, and hence possibly their effects on savanna ecosystems.

  9. Diversity of Mammomonogamus (Nematoda: Syngamidae) in large African herbivores

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Červená, B.; Hrazdilová, K.; Vallo, Peter; Pafčo, B.; Fenyková, T.; Petrželková, Klára Judita; Todd, A.; Tagg, N.; Wangue, N.; Lux Hoppe, E. G.; Duarte Moraes, M. F.; Lapera, I. M.; Souza Pollo, A.; Albuquerque, A. C. A.; Modrý, D.

    2018-01-01

    Roč. 117, č. 4 (2018), s. 1013-1024 ISSN 0932-0113 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA15-05180S Institutional support: RVO:68081766 Keywords : gorilla-gorilla-gorilla * du-petit-loango * mitochondrial DNA * genetic diversity * host-specificity * forest * populations * sequence * endoparasites * strongylida * Mammomonogamus * Gorilla * African forest elephant * African forest buffalo * Parasite sharing * Host specificity Subject RIV: EG - Zoology OBOR OECD: Zoology Impact factor: 2.329, year: 2016

  10. Termites and large herbivores influence seed removal rates in an African savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Acanakwo, Erik Francis; Sheil, Douglas; Moe, Stein R

    2017-12-01

    Seed removal can influence plant community dynamics, composition, and resulting vegetation characteristics. In the African savanna, termites and large herbivores influence vegetation in various ways, likely including indirect effects on seed predators and secondary dispersers. However, the intensity and variation of seed removal rates in African savannas has seldom been studied. We experimentally investigated whether termites and large herbivores were important factors in the mechanisms contributing to observed patterns in tree species composition on and off mounds, in Lake Mburo National Park, Uganda. Within fenced (excluding large herbivores) and unfenced termite mound and adjacent savanna plots, we placed seeds of nine native tree species within small open "cages," accessed by all animals, roofed cages that only allowed access to small vertebrates and invertebrates, and closed cages that permitted access by smaller invertebrates only (5 mm wire mesh). We found that mean seed removal rate was high (up to 87.3% per 3 d). Mound habitats experienced significantly higher removal rates than off-mound habitats. The mean removal rate of native seeds from closed cages was 11.1% per 3 d compared with 19.4% and 23.3% removed per 3 d in the roofed and open cages, respectively. Smaller seeds experienced higher removal rates than larger seeds. Large herbivore exclusion on mounds reduced native seed removal rates by a mean of 8.8% in the open cages, but increased removal rates by 1.7% in the open cages when off-mound habitats were fenced. While removal rates from open cages were higher on active mounds (30.9%) than on inactive mounds (26.7%), the removal rates from closed cages were lower on active vs. inactive mounds (6.1% vs. 11.6%, respectively). Thus, we conclude that large herbivores and Macrotermes mounds influence seed removal rates, though these effects appear indirect. © 2017 by the Ecological Society of America.

  11. Impact of wild herbivorous mammals and birds on the altitudinal and northern treeline ecotones

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Friedrich-Karl Holtmeier

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Wild herbivorous mammals may damage treeline vegetation an cause soil erosion at a local scale. In many high mountain areas of Europe and North America, large numbers of red deer have become a threat to the maintenance of high-elevation forests and attempts to restore the climatic treeline. In northern Fennoscandia, overgrazing by reindeer in combination with mass outbreaks of the autumnal moth are influencing treeline dynamics. Moose are also increasingly involved damaging treeline forest. In the Alps, the re-introduction of ibex is causing local damage to subalpine forests and tree establishment above the forest limit as well as aggravating soil erosion. High-elevation forests and treeline in Europe are susceptible to the deleterious impact of wild ungulate populations because of former extensive pastoral use. Rodents may damage tree seedlings and saplings by girdling, root cutting, bark stripping and burrowing. Hares damage young trees by gnawing. Large numbers of small rodents may occasionally impede tree regeneration by depleting the seed sources. Rodents do not contribute to forest expansion beyond the current treeline. Among birds, nutcrackers are highly effective in influencing tree distribution patterns and treeline dynamics. Without the nutcracker caching of stone pine seeds any upward advance of the trees in response to climatic warming would be impossible. Some bird species such as black grouse, willow grouse and ptarmigan can impair tree growth by feeding on buds, catkins and fresh terminal shoots.

  12. Isolation of fungi from dung of wild herbivores for application in bioethanol production.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Makhuvele, Rhulani; Ncube, Ignatious; Jansen van Rensburg, Elbert Lukas; La Grange, Daniël Coenrad

    Producing biofuels such as ethanol from non-food plant material has the potential to meet transportation fuel requirements in many African countries without impacting directly on food security. The current shortcomings in biomass processing are inefficient fermentation of plant sugars, such as xylose, especially at high temperatures, lack of fermenting microbes that are able to resist inhibitors associated with pre-treated plant material and lack of effective lignocellulolytic enzymes for complete hydrolysis of plant polysaccharides. Due to the presence of residual partially degraded lignocellulose in the gut, the dung of herbivores can be considered as a natural source of pre-treated lignocellulose. A total of 101 fungi were isolated (36 yeast and 65 mould isolates). Six yeast isolates produced ethanol during growth on xylose while three were able to grow at 42°C. This is a desirable growth temperature as it is closer to that which is used during the cellulose hydrolysis process. From the yeast isolates, six isolates were able to tolerate 2g/L acetic acid and one tolerated 2g/L furfural in the growth media. These inhibitors are normally generated during the pre-treatment step. When grown on pre-treated thatch grass, Aspergillus species were dominant in secretion of endo-glucanase, xylanase and mannanase. Copyright © 2017 Sociedade Brasileira de Microbiologia. Published by Elsevier Editora Ltda. All rights reserved.

  13. 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

  14. DUST-BATHING BEHAVIORS OF AFRICAN HERBIVORES AND THE POTENTIAL RISK OF INHALATIONAL ANTHRAX.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barandongo, Zoe R; Mfune, John K E; Turner, Wendy C

    2018-01-01

    :  Anthrax in herbivorous wildlife and livestock is generally assumed to be transmitted via ingestion or inhalation of Bacillus anthracis spores. Although recent studies have highlighted the importance of the ingestion route for anthrax transmission, little is known about the inhalational route in natural systems. Dust bathing could aerosolize soilborne pathogens such as B. anthracis, exposing dust-bathing individuals to inhalational infections. We investigated the potential role of dust bathing in the transmission of inhalational anthrax to herbivorous wildlife in Etosha National Park, Namibia, an area with endemic seasonal anthrax outbreaks. We 1) cultured soils from dust-bathing sites for the presence and concentration of B. anthracis spores, 2) monitored anthrax carcass sites, the locations with the highest B. anthracis concentrations, for evidence of dust bathing, including a site where a zebra died of anthrax on a large dust bath, and 3) characterized the ecology and seasonality of dust bathing in plains zebra ( Equus quagga), blue wildebeest ( Connochaetes taurinus), and African savanna elephant ( Loxodonta africana) using a combination of motion-sensing camera traps and direct observations. Only two out of 83 dust-bath soils were positive for B. anthracis, both with low spore concentrations (≤20 colony-forming units per gram). We also detected no evidence of dust baths occurring at anthrax carcass sites, perhaps due to carcass-induced changes in soil composition that may deter dust bathing. Finally, despite observing some seasonal variation in dust bathing, preliminary evidence suggests that the seasonality of dust bathing and anthrax mortalities are not correlated. Thus, although dust bathing creates a dramatic cloud of aerosolized soil around an individual, our microbiologic, ecologic, and behavioral results in concert demonstrate that dust bathing is highly unlikely to transmit inhalational anthrax infections.

  15. Distemper outbreak and its effect on African wild dog conservation.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    M.W.G. van de Bildt (Marco); T. Kuiken (Thijs); A.M. Visee; S. Lema; A.R. Fitzjohn; A.D.M.E. Osterhaus (Albert)

    2002-01-01

    textabstractIn December 2000, an infectious disease spread through a captive breeding group of African wild dogs (Lycaon pictus) in Tanzania, killing 49 of 52 animals within 2 months. The causative agent was identified as Canine distemper virus (CDV) by means of histologic examination, virus

  16. Short communications : Are wild African lungfish obligate air ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Laboratory studies have resulted in classification of the marbled African lungfish, Protopterus aethiopicus, as an obligate air-breather. However, there have been no investigations of the extent of dependence on aerial respiration by this species in the wild. We used radio telemetry to obtain quantitative information on the ...

  17. The importance of herbivore interactions for the dynamics of African savanna woodlands : an hypothesis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Van de Koppel, J; Prins, HHT

    Current hypotheses to explain dynamic transitions between savanna grasslands and woodlands in Africa focus on grazing by elephant or the influence of fire. Using a simple mathematical model, this paper argues that interactions between small herbivores such as impala or buffalo and large herbivores

  18. Distemper Outbreak and Its Effect on African Wild Dog Conservation

    Science.gov (United States)

    van de Bildt, Marco W.G.; Kuiken, Thijs; Visee, Aart M.; Lema, Sangito; Fitzjohn, Tony R.

    2002-01-01

    In December 2000, an infectious disease spread through a captive breeding group of African wild dogs (Lycaon pictus) in Tanzania, killing 49 of 52 animals within 2 months. The causative agent was identified as Canine distemper virus (CDV) by means of histologic examination, virus isolation, reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction analysis, and nucleotide sequencing. This report emphasizes the importance of adequate protection against infectious diseases for the successful outcome of captive breeding programs of endangered species. PMID:11897078

  19. Forage patch use by grazing herbivores in a South African grazing ecosystem

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Venter, J.A.; Nabe-Nielsen, J.; Prins, H.H.T.; Slotow, R.

    2014-01-01

    Understanding how different herbivores make forage patch use choices explains how they maintain an adequate nutritional status, which is important for effective conservation management of grazing ecosystems. Using telemetry data, we investigated nonruminant zebra (Equus burchelli) and ruminant red

  20. Plutonium and other alpha-emitters in bones of wild, herbivorous animals from north-eastern Poland

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mietelski, J.W. E-mail: mietelsk@alf.ifj.edu.pl; Gaca, P.; Jasinska, M

    2000-07-15

    The results of the investigation of {sup 239+240}Pu, {sup 241}Am and thorium isotope activity concentrations in bones of wild herbivorous animals (deer, roe-deer, boars, elks) from north-eastern Poland are presented. The area on which the animals were living had relatively high Chernobyl plutonium fallout. Possible traces of plutonium were seen only in four samples, but only for one it was it 3{sigma} above background, at 6.2 {+-} 2.4 mBq/kg (ash). The {sup 241}Am activity concentration was below the detection limits in all samples. The maximum {sup 228}Th concentration in the samples was 7.81 {+-} 0.44 Bq/kg (ash), calculated under the assumption of 100% thorium recovery. This isotope seems to originate in bones not from direct incorporation but from the decay of {sup 228}Ra. Large variations in activity concentration was observed, as well as some differences between boars and the chewing animals.

  1. Caesium concentration factors in wild herbivores and the fox (Vulpes vulpes L.)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lowe, V.P.W.; Horrill, A.D.

    1991-01-01

    A selection of wild animals was sampled in the winter of 1986/87. The sites chosen for sampling were based on information obtained from surveys carried out by The Institute of Terrestrial Ecology in the spring and autumn of 1986. Animals included deer, grouse, hares and rabbits, and foxes which were collected as a top carnivore in the food chain. Variation in concentration of caesium between species from the same area was unpredictable; rabbits never exceeded 200 Bq kg -1 (fresh wt) of 137 Cs in their flesh, even when adjacent to deer forests with over 1000 Bq kg -1 in the venison. The greatest complication arose from areas of peaty uplands where the pre-Chernobyl 137 Cs from weapons-testing was much higher than expected. This pre-Chernobyl contribution amounted to 630 Bq kg -1 in a red grouse from the Pennines, and 650 Bq kg -1 in a roe deer from near the Borders, being c. 60% of the total. Significant differences in concentration factors were found depending on species, food, sex, breeding condition and age. Contrasting the decrease of the two caesium isotopes in roe deer from forestry on peat with those from woodlands on mineral soils, it appeared that after an initial fall in concentration, the only decrease thereafter occurred on the mineral soils. Nowhere were radiocaesium concentrations high enough to cause concern amongst consumers of game and other wild animals, even when levels exceed 3000 Bq kg -1 (fresh wt) as they did in red deer, red grouse and the blue hare. (author)

  2. 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.

  3. Cross-modal individual recognition in wild African lions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gilfillan, Geoffrey; Vitale, Jessica; McNutt, John Weldon; McComb, Karen

    2016-08-01

    Individual recognition is considered to have been fundamental in the evolution of complex social systems and is thought to be a widespread ability throughout the animal kingdom. Although robust evidence for individual recognition remains limited, recent experimental paradigms that examine cross-modal processing have demonstrated individual recognition in a range of captive non-human animals. It is now highly relevant to test whether cross-modal individual recognition exists within wild populations and thus examine how it is employed during natural social interactions. We address this question by testing audio-visual cross-modal individual recognition in wild African lions (Panthera leo) using an expectancy-violation paradigm. When presented with a scenario where the playback of a loud-call (roaring) broadcast from behind a visual block is incongruent with the conspecific previously seen there, subjects responded more strongly than during the congruent scenario where the call and individual matched. These findings suggest that lions are capable of audio-visual cross-modal individual recognition and provide a useful method for studying this ability in wild populations. © 2016 The Author(s).

  4. Satisfying giant appetites : mechanisms of small scale foraging by large African herbivores

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pretorius, Y.

    2009-01-01

    Variation in body mass allows for resource partitioning and co-existence of different species. Body mass is also seen as the main factor governing nutrient requirements in herbivores as metabolic rate and requirements have often been found to scale to ¾ power of body mass. Although the consequences

  5. 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.

  6. Identification of Wild Boar-Habitat Epidemiologic Cycle in African Swine Fever Epizootic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chenais, Erika; Ståhl, Karl; Guberti, Vittorio; Depner, Klaus

    2018-04-01

    The African swine fever epizootic in central and eastern European Union member states has a newly identified component involving virus transmission by wild boar and virus survival in the environment. Insights led to an update of the 3 accepted African swine fever transmission models to include a fourth cycle: wild boar-habitat.

  7. Identification of Wild Boar–Habitat Epidemiologic Cycle in African Swine Fever Epizootic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ståhl, Karl; Guberti, Vittorio; Depner, Klaus

    2018-01-01

    The African swine fever epizootic in central and eastern European Union member states has a newly identified component involving virus transmission by wild boar and virus survival in the environment. Insights led to an update of the 3 accepted African swine fever transmission models to include a fourth cycle: wild boar–habitat. PMID:29553337

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. Large-scale assessment of commensalistic–mutualistic associations between African birds and herbivorous mammals using internet photos

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hadrava, Jiří; Albrecht, Tomáš; Tryjanowski, Piotr

    2018-01-01

    Birds sitting or feeding on live large African herbivorous mammals are a visible, yet quite neglected, type of commensalistic–mutualistic association. Here, we investigate general patterns in such relationships at large spatial and taxonomic scales. To obtain large-scale data, an extensive internet-based search for photos was carried out on Google Images. To characterize patterns of the structural organization of commensalistic–mutualistic associations between African birds and herbivorous mammals, we used a network analysis approach. We then employed phylogenetically-informed comparative analysis to explore whether features of bird visitation of mammals, i.e., their mean number, mass and species richness per mammal species, are shaped by a combination of host mammal (body mass and herd size) and environmental (habitat openness) characteristics. We found that the association web structure was only weakly nested for commensalistic as well as for mutualistic birds (oxpeckers Buphagus spp.) and African mammals. Moreover, except for oxpeckers, nestedness did not differ significantly from a null model indicating that birds do not prefer mammal species which are visited by a large number of bird species. In oxpeckers, however, a nested structure suggests a non-random assignment of birds to their mammal hosts. We also identified some new or rare associations between birds and mammals, but we failed to find several previously described associations. Furthermore, we found that mammal body mass positively influenced the number and mass of birds observed sitting on them in the full set of species (i.e., taking oxpeckers together with other bird species). We also found a positive correlation between mammal body mass and mass of non-oxpecker species as well as oxpeckers. Mammal herd size was associated with a higher mass of birds in the full set of species as well as in non-oxpecker species, and mammal species living in larger herds also attracted more bird species in the

  12. Energy cost and return for hunting in African wild dogs and cheetahs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hubel, Tatjana Y; Myatt, Julia P; Jordan, Neil R; Dewhirst, Oliver P; McNutt, J Weldon; Wilson, Alan M

    2016-03-29

    African wild dogs (Lycaon pictus) are reported to hunt with energetically costly long chase distances. We used high-resolution GPS and inertial technology to record 1,119 high-speed chases of all members of a pack of six adult African wild dogs in northern Botswana. Dogs performed multiple short, high-speed, mostly unsuccessful chases to capture prey, while cheetahs (Acinonyx jubatus) undertook even shorter, higher-speed hunts. We used an energy balance model to show that the energy return from group hunting and feeding substantially outweighs the cost of multiple short chases, which indicates that African wild dogs are more energetically robust than previously believed. Comparison with cheetah illustrates the trade-off between sheer athleticism and high individual kill rate characteristic of cheetahs, and the energetic robustness of frequent opportunistic group hunting and feeding by African wild dogs.

  13. Energy cost and return for hunting in African wild dogs and cheetahs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hubel, Tatjana Y.; Myatt, Julia P.; Jordan, Neil R.; Dewhirst, Oliver P.; McNutt, J. Weldon; Wilson, Alan M.

    2016-01-01

    African wild dogs (Lycaon pictus) are reported to hunt with energetically costly long chase distances. We used high-resolution GPS and inertial technology to record 1,119 high-speed chases of all members of a pack of six adult African wild dogs in northern Botswana. Dogs performed multiple short, high-speed, mostly unsuccessful chases to capture prey, while cheetahs (Acinonyx jubatus) undertook even shorter, higher-speed hunts. We used an energy balance model to show that the energy return from group hunting and feeding substantially outweighs the cost of multiple short chases, which indicates that African wild dogs are more energetically robust than previously believed. Comparison with cheetah illustrates the trade-off between sheer athleticism and high individual kill rate characteristic of cheetahs, and the energetic robustness of frequent opportunistic group hunting and feeding by African wild dogs. PMID:27023457

  14. Recovery of rangelands : the functioning of soil seed banks in a semi-arid African savanna

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tessema, Z.K.

    2011-01-01

    Rangelands in Africa provide important forage resources for herbivores; particularly perennial grasses provide grazing for domestic and wild herbivores. However, semi-arid African rangelands experience severe vegetation and soil degradation due to heavy grazing, causing negative impacts

  15. Haemoglobin polymorphism in wild and cultured African catfish ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Haemoglobin polymorphism, haemoglobin concentration, blood group and genotypes of wild and cultured Clarias gariepinus were investigated. Blood samples of Clarias gariepinus collected from Lake Alau (wild) and Dalori fish farm (cultured) were subjected to cellulose acetate electrophoresis to reveal the activities of ...

  16. Detecting predators and locating competitors while foraging: an experimental study of a medium-sized herbivore in an African savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pays, Olivier; Blanchard, Pierrick; Valeix, Marion; Chamaillé-Jammes, Simon; Duncan, Patrick; Périquet, Stéphanie; Lombard, Marion; Ncube, Gugulethu; Tarakini, Tawanda; Makuwe, Edwin; Fritz, Hervé

    2012-06-01

    Vigilance allows individuals to escape from predators, but it also reduces time for other activities which determine fitness, in particular resource acquisition. The principles determining how prey trade time between the detection of predators and food acquisition are not fully understood, particularly in herbivores because of many potential confounding factors (such as group size), and the ability of these animals to be vigilant while handling food. We designed a fertilization experiment to manipulate the quality of resources, and compared awareness (distinguishing apprehensive foraging and vigilance) of wild impalas (Aepyceros melampus) foraging on patches of different grass height and quality in a wilderness area with a full community of predators. While handling food, these animals can allocate time to other functions. The impalas were aware of their environment less often when on good food patches and when the grass was short. The animals spent more time in apprehensive foraging when grass was tall, and no other variable affected apprehensive behavior. The probability of exhibiting a vigilance posture decreased with group size. The interaction between grass height and patch enrichment also affected the time spent in vigilance, suggesting that resource quality was the main driver when visibility is good, and the risk of predation the main driver when the risk is high. We discuss various possible mechanisms underlying the perception of predation risk: foraging strategy, opportunities for scrounging, and inter-individual interference. Overall, this experiment shows that improving patch quality modifies the trade-off between vigilance and foraging in favor of feeding, but vigilance remains ultimately driven by the visibility of predators by foragers within their feeding patches.

  17. Energy cost and return for hunting in African wild dogs and cheetahs

    OpenAIRE

    Hubel, Tatjana Y.; Myatt, Julia P.; Jordan, Neil R.; Dewhirst, Oliver P.; McNutt, J. Weldon; Wilson, Alan M.

    2016-01-01

    African wild dogs (Lycaon pictus) are reported to hunt with energetically costly long chase distances. We used high-resolution GPS and inertial technology to record 1,119 high-speed chases of all members of a pack of six adult African wild dogs in northern Botswana. Dogs performed multiple short, high-speed, mostly unsuccessful chases to capture prey, while cheetahs (Acinonyx jubatus) undertook even shorter, higher-speed hunts. We used an energy balance model to show that the energy return fr...

  18. Farmer–African wild dog (Lycaon pictus relations in the eastern Kalahari region of Botswana

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Valli-Laurente Fraser-Celin

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available African wild dogs (Lycaon pictus are the most endangered large carnivores in southern Africa. Direct and indirect persecution by farmers causes significant conservation challenges. Farmer– wild dog conflict in Botswana commonly occurs as a result of cattle and stocked game depredation by wild dogs, affecting farmer livelihood and causing economic and emotional distress. Although wild dogs predate livestock at lower levels than other carnivores, they continue to be killed both indiscriminately and in retaliation for incidents of depredation. Investigating farmer–wild dog conflict is a necessary step towards establishing appropriate conflict mitigation strategies. Eighty livestock and game farmers were interviewed in order to examine farmers’ value of, perceptions of and experiences with wild dogs as well as their insights on wild dog impacts and conservation in the eastern Kalahari region of Botswana. Interviews were semi-structured and used open-ended questions to capture complexities surrounding farmer–wild dog relations. This research contributes baseline data on wild dogs in understudied tribal land and commercial livestock and game farms in eastern Kalahari. It confirms the presence of wild dogs, livestock and stocked game depredation by wild dogs and negative perspectives amongst farmers towards wild dogs and their conservation. Mean losses were 0.85 livestock per subsistence farmer, 1.25 livestock per commercial livestock farmer, while game farmers lost 95.88 game animals per farmer during January 2012 through June 2013. Proportionally, more subsistence farmers than commercial livestock farmers and game farmers held negative perspectives of wild dogs (χ ² = 9.63, df = 2, p < 0.05. Farmer type, education level, socioeconomic status and land tenure, as well as positive wild dog characteristics should be considered when planning and operationalising conflict mitigation strategies. As such, conservation approaches should focus on

  19. Space use of African wild dogs in relation to other large carnivores.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Angela M Darnell

    Full Text Available Interaction among species through competition is a principle process structuring ecological communities, affecting behavior, distribution, and ultimately the population dynamics of species. High competition among large African carnivores, associated with extensive diet overlap, manifests in interactions between subordinate African wild dogs (Lycaon pictus and dominant lions (Panthera leo and spotted hyenas (Crocuta crocuta. Using locations of large carnivores in Hluhluwe-iMfolozi Park, South Africa, we found different responses from wild dogs to their two main competitors. Wild dogs avoided lions, particularly during denning, through a combination of spatial and temporal avoidance. However, wild dogs did not exhibit spatial or temporal avoidance of spotted hyenas, likely because wild dog pack sizes were large enough to adequately defend their kills. Understanding that larger carnivores affect the movements and space use of other carnivores is important for managing current small and fragmented carnivore populations, especially as reintroductions and translocations are essential tools used for the survival of endangered species, as with African wild dogs.

  20. The predicament of the African wild dog, Lycaon pictus, is less precarious than claimed

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Koetsier, T.; Jongeling, Tjeerd B.

    2014-01-01

    In a paper published fifteen years ago, Gorman et al. (Nature 391, 479–481) made precise claims about how sensitive the African wild dog is to kleptoparasitism by spotted hyaenas Crocuta crocuta and lions Panthera leo. These claims are regularly referred to in the literature, and so far, they have

  1. Isoflurane anaesthesia in an African wild dog, Lycaon pictus : short communication

    OpenAIRE

    G.F. Stegmann

    2000-01-01

    Anaesthesia was required in a captive female African wild dog (Lycaon pictus) for surgical wound treatment. After it was immobilised with a medetomidine-ketamine combination, bradycardia, hypothermia, systolic hypertension and metabolic acidosis were observed. Surgical anaesthesia was maintained with a 1 %end-tidal isoflurane concentration. A decrease in the arterial blood pressure, rectal temperature and pHoccurred during maintenance of anaesthesia.

  2. 77 FR 33100 - Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Technical Correction for African Wild Ass

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-06-05

    ... telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD), call the Federal Information Relay Service (FIRS) at 800-877-8339... recognizes the African wild ass as Equus asinus (CITES Resolution Conf. 12.11 (Rev. CoP15), Standard... the problems it created for enforcement officials, the Parties agreed to deviate from Wilson and...

  3. Study on the macrometry of gastrointestinal tract of wild west African ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    ... and those in domestication end up in animal units of schools and houses of the wealthy individuals. The wild African Senegal parrot population is at risk of extinction due to its high popularity with urban dweller. Despite their high popularity, there is scanty documentation of the anatomical features of its gastrointestinal tract ...

  4. Heading for the hills: risk avoidance drives den site selection in African wild dogs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jackson, Craig R; Power, R John; Groom, Rosemary J; Masenga, Emmanuel H; Mjingo, Ernest E; Fyumagwa, Robert D; Røskaft, Eivin; Davies-Mostert, Harriet

    2014-01-01

    Compared to their main competitors, African wild dogs (Lycaon pictus) have inferior competitive abilities and interspecific competition is a serious fitness-limiting factor. Lions (Panthera leo) are the dominant large carnivore in African savannah ecosystems and wild dogs avoid them both spatially and temporally. Wild dog young are particularly vulnerable and suffer high rates of mortality from lions. Since lions do not utilize all parts of the landscape with an equal intensity, spatial variation in lion densities can be exploited by wild dogs both during their general ranging behaviour, but more specifically when they are confined to a den with vulnerable young. Since patches of rugged terrain are associated with lower lion densities, we hypothesized that these comparatively safe habitats should be selected by wild dogs for denning. We investigated the relationship between the distribution of 100 wild dog den sites and the occurrence of rugged terrain in four wild dog populations located in Tanzania, Zimbabwe and South Africa. A terrain ruggedness index was derived from a 90 m digital elevation model and used to map terrain ruggedness at each site. We compared characteristics of actual and potential (random) den sites to determine how wild dogs select den sites. The distributions of wild dog dens were strongly associated with rugged terrain and wild dogs actively selected terrain that was more rugged than that available on average. The likelihood of encountering lions is reduced in these habitats, minimizing the risk to both adults and pups. Our findings have important implications for the conservation management of the species, especially when assessing habitat suitability for potential reintroductions. The simple technique used to assess terrain ruggedness may be useful to investigate habitat suitability, and even predict highly suitable denning areas, across large landscapes.

  5. Heading for the hills: risk avoidance drives den site selection in African wild dogs.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Craig R Jackson

    Full Text Available Compared to their main competitors, African wild dogs (Lycaon pictus have inferior competitive abilities and interspecific competition is a serious fitness-limiting factor. Lions (Panthera leo are the dominant large carnivore in African savannah ecosystems and wild dogs avoid them both spatially and temporally. Wild dog young are particularly vulnerable and suffer high rates of mortality from lions. Since lions do not utilize all parts of the landscape with an equal intensity, spatial variation in lion densities can be exploited by wild dogs both during their general ranging behaviour, but more specifically when they are confined to a den with vulnerable young. Since patches of rugged terrain are associated with lower lion densities, we hypothesized that these comparatively safe habitats should be selected by wild dogs for denning. We investigated the relationship between the distribution of 100 wild dog den sites and the occurrence of rugged terrain in four wild dog populations located in Tanzania, Zimbabwe and South Africa. A terrain ruggedness index was derived from a 90 m digital elevation model and used to map terrain ruggedness at each site. We compared characteristics of actual and potential (random den sites to determine how wild dogs select den sites. The distributions of wild dog dens were strongly associated with rugged terrain and wild dogs actively selected terrain that was more rugged than that available on average. The likelihood of encountering lions is reduced in these habitats, minimizing the risk to both adults and pups. Our findings have important implications for the conservation management of the species, especially when assessing habitat suitability for potential reintroductions. The simple technique used to assess terrain ruggedness may be useful to investigate habitat suitability, and even predict highly suitable denning areas, across large landscapes.

  6. Analysis of the Spatial Relationship between Cattle and Wild Ungulates across Different Land-Use Systems in a Tropical Savanna Landscape

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Geoffrey W. Kinga

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available In many African savanna landscapes, domestic and wild herbivores cooccur across different land-use systems, but the role of land-use in shaping their spatial relationship is poorly understood. We evaluated the spatial relationship between cattle and wild herbivores categorized by body sizes and feeding habits across different land-use types, namely, private ranches (PR, transitional lands (TRL, and pastoral grazing areas (PGA, in Laikipia County, Kenya. Cattle and wild herbivores spatial distribution data were obtained from Kenya’s Department of Resources Survey and Remote Sensing (DRSRS. Spatial relationships between cattle and different wild herbivore guilds were analyzed using Ripley’s bivariate K12 function. In PR, wild herbivore guilds showed significant attraction to cattle at short distances. In TRL, wild grazers, mixed feeders, megaherbivores, and medium-sized ungulates exhibited significant attraction to cattle. Additionally, repulsion was observed between cattle and browsers at short distances under this land-use system. In PGA, wild grazers, mixed feeders, and megaherbivores repelled strongly with cattle at short distances while browsers and medium-sized ungulates were significantly attracted to cattle. Cattle and wild herbivores were more randomly and independently distributed in PR than in TRL and PGA. These spatial relationships imply better coexistence between cattle and wild herbivores in PR than in TRL and PGA.

  7. Assessing the Risk of African Swine Fever Introduction into the European Union by Wild Boar.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De la Torre, A; Bosch, J; Iglesias, I; Muñoz, M J; Mur, L; Martínez-López, B; Martínez, M; Sánchez-Vizcaíno, J M

    2015-06-01

    The presence of African swine fever (ASF) in the Caucasus region and Russian Federation has increased concerns that wild boars may introduce the ASF virus into the European Union (EU). This study describes a semi-quantitative approach for evaluating the risk of ASF introduction into the EU by wild boar movements based on the following risk estimators: the susceptible population of (1) wild boars and (2) domestic pigs in the country of origin; the outbreak density in (3) wild boars and (4) domestic pigs in the countries of origin, the (5) suitable habitat for wild boars along the EU border; and the distance between the EU border and the nearest ASF outbreak in (6) wild boars or (7) domestic pigs. Sensitivity analysis was performed to identify the most influential risk estimators. The highest risk was found to be concentrated in Finland, Romania, Latvia and Poland, and wild boar habitat and outbreak density were the two most important risk estimators. Animal health authorities in at-risk countries should be aware of these risk estimators and should communicate closely with wild boar hunters and pig farmers to rapidly detect and control ASF. © 2013 Blackwell Verlag GmbH.

  8. Contact with Domestic Dogs Increases Pathogen Exposure in Endangered African Wild Dogs (Lycaon pictus)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woodroffe, Rosie; Prager, Katherine C.; Conrad, Patricia A.; Dubovi, Edward J.; Mazet, Jonna A. K.

    2012-01-01

    Background Infectious diseases have contributed to the decline and local extinction of several wildlife species, including African wild dogs (Lycaon pictus). Mitigating such disease threats is challenging, partly because uncertainty about disease dynamics makes it difficult to identify the best management approaches. Serious impacts on susceptible populations most frequently occur when generalist pathogens are maintained within populations of abundant (often domestic) “reservoir” hosts, and spill over into less abundant host species. If this is the case, disease control directed at the reservoir host might be most appropriate. However, pathogen transmission within threatened host populations may also be important, and may not be controllable by managing another host species. Methodology/Principal Findings We investigated interspecific and intraspecific transmission routes, by comparing African wild dogs' exposure to six canine pathogens with behavioural measures of their opportunities for contact with domestic dogs and with other wild dogs. Domestic dog contact was associated with exposure to canine parvovirus, Ehrlichia canis, Neospora caninum and perhaps rabies virus, but not with exposure to canine distemper virus or canine coronavirus. Contact with other wild dogs appeared not to increase the risk of exposure to any of the pathogens. Conclusions/Significance These findings, combined with other data, suggest that management directed at domestic dogs might help to protect wild dog populations from rabies virus, but not from canine distemper virus. However, further analyses are needed to determine the management approaches – including no intervention – which are most appropriate for each pathogen. PMID:22238695

  9. Contact with domestic dogs increases pathogen exposure in endangered African wild dogs (Lycaon pictus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rosie Woodroffe

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Infectious diseases have contributed to the decline and local extinction of several wildlife species, including African wild dogs (Lycaon pictus. Mitigating such disease threats is challenging, partly because uncertainty about disease dynamics makes it difficult to identify the best management approaches. Serious impacts on susceptible populations most frequently occur when generalist pathogens are maintained within populations of abundant (often domestic "reservoir" hosts, and spill over into less abundant host species. If this is the case, disease control directed at the reservoir host might be most appropriate. However, pathogen transmission within threatened host populations may also be important, and may not be controllable by managing another host species. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We investigated interspecific and intraspecific transmission routes, by comparing African wild dogs' exposure to six canine pathogens with behavioural measures of their opportunities for contact with domestic dogs and with other wild dogs. Domestic dog contact was associated with exposure to canine parvovirus, Ehrlichia canis, Neospora caninum and perhaps rabies virus, but not with exposure to canine distemper virus or canine coronavirus. Contact with other wild dogs appeared not to increase the risk of exposure to any of the pathogens. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: These findings, combined with other data, suggest that management directed at domestic dogs might help to protect wild dog populations from rabies virus, but not from canine distemper virus. However, further analyses are needed to determine the management approaches--including no intervention--which are most appropriate for each pathogen.

  10. Large-scale assessment of commensalistic-mutualistic associations between African birds and herbivorous mammals using internet photos

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Mikula, P.; Hadrava, Jiří; Albrecht, Tomáš; Tryjanowski, P.

    2018-01-01

    Roč. 6, č. 3 (2018), č. článku e4520. ISSN 2167-8359 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GB14-36098G Institutional support: RVO:60077344 ; RVO:68081766 Keywords : herbivores * commensalism * web network analyses Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour; EG - Zoology (UBO-W) OBOR OECD: Ecology; Zoology (UBO-W) Impact factor: 2.177, year: 2016 https://peerj.com/articles/4520/

  11. Isoflurane anaesthesia in an African wild dog, Lycaon pictus : short communication

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G.F. Stegmann

    2000-07-01

    Full Text Available Anaesthesia was required in a captive female African wild dog (Lycaon pictus for surgical wound treatment. After it was immobilised with a medetomidine-ketamine combination, bradycardia, hypothermia, systolic hypertension and metabolic acidosis were observed. Surgical anaesthesia was maintained with a 1 %end-tidal isoflurane concentration. A decrease in the arterial blood pressure, rectal temperature and pHoccurred during maintenance of anaesthesia.

  12. [Rapeseed poisoning of wild herbivores].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmid, A; Schmid, H

    1992-06-01

    Beginning with the simultaneous occurrence of the first extensive sowing of 00-rape and local increased losses among hares and roe deer in Western Germany and Austria at the end of 1986, the clinical and morphological symptoms of rape poisoning are discussed. They consist of damage to endo- and epithelium, cell membranes, blood, liver and in the so called "rape-blindness". Subsequently, the most important toxic agents of rape including their metabolites are presented. They consist in alkenyl- and indolyl-glucosinolates, leading to isothiocyanates (mustard oils), thiocyanates or thiocyanate ions resp., nitriles and antithyroid agents (e.g. goitrin) as well as S-methylcysteine sulphoxide and its metabolites, particularly dimethyl disulphide. Finally, the activity spectrum of the toxic agents or the metabolites and the clinical picture of the affected wildlife in 1986 are compared with the result that the losses of that period are most likely to be traced back to rape poisoning and that the rape-blindness mentioned is to be interpreted as a thiocyanate-psychosis.

  13. Genome sequence, population history, and pelage genetics of the endangered African wild dog (Lycaon pictus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campana, Michael G; Parker, Lillian D; Hawkins, Melissa T R; Young, Hillary S; Helgen, Kristofer M; Szykman Gunther, Micaela; Woodroffe, Rosie; Maldonado, Jesús E; Fleischer, Robert C

    2016-12-09

    The African wild dog (Lycaon pictus) is an endangered African canid threatened by severe habitat fragmentation, human-wildlife conflict, and infectious disease. A highly specialized carnivore, it is distinguished by its social structure, dental morphology, absence of dewclaws, and colorful pelage. We sequenced the genomes of two individuals from populations representing two distinct ecological histories (Laikipia County, Kenya and KwaZulu-Natal Province, South Africa). We reconstructed population demographic histories for the two individuals and scanned the genomes for evidence of selection. We show that the African wild dog has undergone at least two effective population size reductions in the last 1,000,000 years. We found evidence of Lycaon individual-specific regions of low diversity, suggestive of inbreeding or population-specific selection. Further research is needed to clarify whether these population reductions and low diversity regions are characteristic of the species as a whole. We documented positive selection on the Lycaon mitochondrial genome. Finally, we identified several candidate genes (ASIP, MITF, MLPH, PMEL) that may play a role in the characteristic Lycaon pelage.

  14. Strategic management of livestock to improve biodiversity conservation in African savannahs: A conceptual basis for wildlife-livestock coexistence

    Science.gov (United States)

    African savannas are complex socio-ecological systems with diverse wild and domestic herbivore assemblages, which utilize functional heterogeneity of habitats to adapt to intra- and inter-annual variation in forage quantity and quality, predation and disease risks. As African savannas become increas...

  15. Fatal canine distemper infection in a pack of African wild dogs in the Serengeti ecosystem, Tanzania.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goller, Katja V; Fyumagwa, Robert D; Nikolin, Veljko; East, Marion L; Kilewo, Morris; Speck, Stephanie; Müller, Thomas; Matzke, Martina; Wibbelt, Gudrun

    2010-12-15

    In 2007, disease related mortality occurred in one African wild dog (Lycaon pictus) pack close to the north-eastern boundary of the Serengeti National Park, Tanzania. Histopathological examination of tissues from six animals revealed that the main pathologic changes comprised interstitial pneumonia and suppurative to necrotizing bronchopneumonia. Respiratory epithelial cells contained numerous eosinophilic intracytoplasmic inclusion bodies and multiple syncytial cells were found throughout the parenchymal tissue, both reacting clearly positive with antibodies against canine distemper virus (CDV) antigen. Phylogenetic analysis based on a 388 nucleotide (nt) fragment of the CDV phosphoprotein (P) gene revealed that the pack was infected with a CDV variant most closely related to Tanzanian variants, including those obtained in 1994 during a CDV epidemic in the Serengeti National Park and from captive African wild dogs in the Mkomazi Game Reserve in 2000. Phylogenetic analysis of a 335-nt fragment of the fusion (F) gene confirmed that the pack in 2007 was infected with a variant most closely related to one variant from 1994 during the epidemic in the Serengeti National Park from which a comparable fragment is available. Screening of tissue samples for concurrent infections revealed evidence of canine parvovirus, Streptococcus equi subsp. ruminatorum and Hepatozoon sp. No evidence of infection with Babesia sp. or rabies virus was found. Possible implications of concurrent infections are discussed. This is the first molecular characterisation of CDV in free-ranging African wild dogs and only the third confirmed case of fatal CDV infection in a free-ranging pack. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. SOLVING FLOWSHOP SCHEDULING PROBLEMS USING A DISCRETE AFRICAN WILD DOG ALGORITHM

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. K. Marichelvam

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available The problem of m-machine permutation flowshop scheduling is considered in this paper. The objective is to minimize the makespan. The flowshop scheduling problem is a typical combinatorial optimization problem and has been proved to be strongly NP-hard. Hence, several heuristics and meta-heuristics were addressed by the researchers. In this paper, a discrete African wild dog algorithm is applied for solving the flowshop scheduling problems. Computational results using benchmark problems show that the proposed algorithm outperforms many other algorithms addressed in the literature.

  17. Periaortic haemangiosarcoma in an African wild dog (Lycaon pictus : clinical communication

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Newell-Fugate

    2009-05-01

    Full Text Available A 9-year-old apparently healthy male African wild dog (Lycaon pictus was found dead in its enclosure at the De Wildt Cheetah and Wildlife Centre. Necropsy revealed a pericardium distended by approximately 250mℓ of thick blood. A soft, red, lobulated mass was attached to the periaortic fat between the level of the aortic valves and the pericardial reflection. Histologically, the mass was consistent with a haemangiosarcoma. Other findings in the heart included mild to moderate ventricular hypertrophy and moderate, acute perivascular myocardial necrosis. Sudden death was attributed to acute heart failure precipitated by cardiac tamponade.

  18. Inbreeding avoidance influences the viability of reintroduced populations of African wild dogs (Lycaon pictus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Penny A Becker

    Full Text Available The conservation of many fragmented and small populations of endangered African wild dogs (Lycaon pictus relies on understanding the natural processes affecting genetic diversity, demographics, and future viability. We used extensive behavioural, life-history, and genetic data from reintroduced African wild dogs in South Africa to (1 test for inbreeding avoidance via mate selection and (2 model the potential consequences of avoidance on population persistence. Results suggested that wild dogs avoided mating with kin. Inbreeding was rare in natal packs, after reproductive vacancies, and between sibling cohorts (observed on 0.8%, 12.5%, and 3.8% of occasions, respectively. Only one of the six (16.7% breeding pairs confirmed as third-order (or closer kin consisted of animals that were familiar with each other, while no other paired individuals had any prior association. Computer-simulated populations allowed to experience inbreeding had only a 1.6% probability of extinction within 100 years, whereas all populations avoiding incestuous matings became extinct due to the absence of unrelated mates. Populations that avoided mating with first-order relatives became extinct after 63 years compared with persistence of 37 and 19 years for those also prevented from second-order and third-order matings, respectively. Although stronger inbreeding avoidance maintains significantly more genetic variation, our results demonstrate the potentially severe demographic impacts of reduced numbers of suitable mates on the future viability of small, isolated wild dog populations. The rapid rate of population decline suggests that extinction may occur before inbreeding depression is observed.

  19. Discrepancies in the occurrence of Balantidium coli between wild and captive African great apes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pomajbíková, Kateřina; Petrželková, Klára J; Profousová, Ilona; Petrášová, Jana; Modrý, David

    2010-12-01

    Balantidium coli is a ciliate reported in many mammalian species, including African great apes. In the former, asymptomatic infections as well as clinical balantidiasis have been reported in captivity. We carried out a cross-sectional study of B. coli in African great apes (chimpanzees, bonobos, and both species of gorillas) and examined 1,161 fecal samples from 28 captive facilities in Europe, plus 2 sanctuaries and 11 wild sites in Africa. Samples were analyzed with the use of Sheather's flotation and merthiolate-iodine-formaldehyde (MIFC) sedimentation. MIFC sedimentation was the more sensitive technique for diagnostics of B. coli in apes. Although not detected in any wild-ape populations, B. coli was diagnosed in 52.6% of captive individuals. Surprisingly, in the apes' feces, trophozoites of B. coli were commonly detected, in contrast with other animals, e.g., Old World monkeys, pigs, etc. Most likely reservoirs for B. coli in captive apes include synantropic rats. High starch diets in captive apes are likely to exacerbate the occurrence of balantidiasis in captive apes.

  20. Additive opportunistic capture explains group hunting benefits in African wild dogs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hubel, Tatjana Y; Myatt, Julia P; Jordan, Neil R; Dewhirst, Oliver P; McNutt, J Weldon; Wilson, Alan M

    2016-03-29

    African wild dogs (Lycaon pictus) are described as highly collaborative endurance pursuit hunters based on observations derived primarily from the grass plains of East Africa. However, the remaining population of this endangered species mainly occupies mixed woodland savannah where hunting strategies appear to differ from those previously described. We used high-resolution GPS and inertial technology to record fine-scale movement of all members of a single pack of six adult African wild dogs in northern Botswana. The dogs used multiple short-distance hunting attempts with a low individual kill rate (15.5%), but high group feeding rate due to the sharing of prey. Use of high-level cooperative chase strategies (coordination and collaboration) was not recorded. In the mixed woodland habitats typical of their current range, simultaneous, opportunistic, short-distance chasing by dogs pursuing multiple prey (rather than long collaborative pursuits of single prey by multiple individuals) could be the key to their relative success in these habitats.

  1. Cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma presenting as a wound with discharging sinus tracts in a wild African lion (Panthera leo).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mwase, M; Mumba, C; Square, D; Kawarai, S; Madarame, H

    2013-11-01

    A female wild African lion (Panthera leo) was presented with an 8-month history of a wound with multiple discharging sinus tracts on the left paw. Microscopical examination revealed squamous cell carcinoma (SCC). To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report of cutaneous SCC in an African lion. Cutaneous SCC presenting as discharging sinus tracts lined by neoplastic squamous cells has not been reported previously in animals. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Large herbivores that strive mightily but eat and drink as friends

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Boer, de W.F.; Prins, H.H.T.

    1990-01-01

    Grazing in patches of Cynodon dactylon and of Sporobolus spicatus by four large herbivores, and the interaction between these sedentary herbivores was studied in Lake Manyara National Park, northern Tanzania. The herbivores were the African buffalo, Syncerus caffer; the African elephan, Loxodonta

  3. Molecular characterization of Babesia and Cytauxzoon species in wild South-African meerkats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leclaire, Sarah; Menard, Sandie; Berry, Antoine

    2015-04-01

    Piroplasms, including Babesia, Cytauxzoon and Theileria species, frequently infect domestic and wild mammals. At present, there is no information on the occurrence and molecular identity of these tick-borne blood parasites in the meerkat, one of South Africa's most endearing wildlife celebrities. Meerkats live in territorial groups, which may occur on ranchland in close proximity to humans, pets and livestock. Blood collected from 46 healthy meerkats living in the South-African Kalahari desert was screened by microscopy and molecular methods, using PCR and DNA sequencing of 18S rRNA and ITS1 genes. We found that meerkats were infected by 2 species: one species related to Babesia sp. and one species related to Cytauxzoon sp. Ninety one percent of the meerkats were infected by the Cytauxzoon and/or the Babesia species. Co-infection occurred in 46% of meerkats. The pathogenicity and vectors of these two piroplasm species remains to be determined.

  4. Behavioral correlates between daily activity and sociality in wild and captive origin African lions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunston, Emma J; Abell, Jackie; Freire, Rafael

    2016-01-01

    Study of behavioral correlations within and across populations has long been of interest to ethologists. An exploration of behavioral correlations between sociality and behavior of African lions ( Panthera leo ) was undertaken to examine if this approach is better able to reveal important aspects of lion behavior not easily discernible by looking at these behaviors separately. Resting behavior and received play interactions were correlated in 2 captive-origin prides and one wild pride, attributable to the involvement of cubs and sub-adults. Direct and exploratory movement was negatively correlated with groom centrality in 2 of the 3 prides, due to adults engaging in high levels of both of these activities. Exploration of these behavioral correlations highlighted the differences between age-groups in activity and sociality, facilitating the understanding of the complex behavior and interactions of lions. In addition, the finding of similar behavioral correlations between captive-origin and the wild prides provides confidence in the suitability if captive-origin candidates for ex-situ release. This is imperative to ensure the success of sub-groups and prides under an ex-situ reintroduction program.

  5. Indicators for wild animal offtake: methods and case study for African mammals and birds

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel J. Ingram

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Unsustainable exploitation of wild animals is one of the greatest threats to biodiversity and to millions of people depending on wild meat for food and income. The international conservation and development community has committed to implementing plans for sustainable use of natural resources and has requested development of monitoring systems of bushmeat offtake and trade. Although offtake monitoring systems and indicators for marine species are more developed, information on harvesting terrestrial species is limited. Building on approaches developed to monitor exploitation of fisheries and population trends, we have proposed two novel indicators for harvested terrestrial species: the mean body mass indicator (MBMI assessing whether hunters are relying increasingly on smaller species over time, as a measure of defaunation, by tracking body mass composition of harvested species within samples across various sites and dates; and the offtake pressure indicator (OPI as a measure of harvesting pressure on groups of wild animals within a region by combining multiple time series of the number of harvested individuals across species. We applied these two indicators to recently compiled data for West and Central African mammals and birds. Our exploratory analyses show that the MBMI of harvested mammals decreased but that of birds rose between 1966/1975 and 2010. For both mammals and birds the OPI increased substantially during the observed time period. Given our results, time-series data and information collated from multiple sources are useful to investigate trends in body mass of hunted species and offtake volumes. In the absence of comprehensive monitoring systems, we suggest that the two indicators developed in our study are adequate proxies of wildlife offtake, which together with additional data can inform conservation policies and actions at regional and global scales.

  6. An Infectious Disease and Mortality Survey in a Population of Free-Ranging African Wild Dogs and Sympatric Domestic Dogs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. Flacke

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Disease can cause declines in wildlife populations and significantly threaten their survival. Recent expansion of human and domestic animal populations has made wildlife more susceptible to transmission of pathogens from domestic animal hosts. We conducted a pathogen surveillance and mortality survey for the population of African wild dogs (Lycaon pictus in KwaZulu-Natal (KZN, South Africa, from January 2006–February 2007. Samples were obtained from 24 wild dogs for canine distemper virus (CDV and canine parvovirus (CPV serological testing. Data were collected on the presence of CDV, CPV, and rabies virus in the KZN domestic dog (Canis familiaris population from 2004–06. The presence of these pathogens was confirmed in domestic dogs throughout KZN. Wild dogs exhibited 0% and 4.2% prevalence for CDV and CPV antibodies, respectively. In 2006 the largest wild dog pack in KZN was reduced from 26 individuals to a single animal; disease due to rabies virus was considered the most probable cause. This study provides evidence that CDV, CPV and rabies are potential threats to African wild dog conservation in KZN. The most economical and practical way to protect wild dogs from canine pathogens may be via vaccination of sympatric domestic dogs; however, such programmes are currently limited.

  7. Reproduction in the endangered African wild dog: basic physiology, reproductive suppression and possible benefits of artificial insemination.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van den Berghe, F; Paris, D B B P; Van Soom, A; Rijsselaere, T; Van der Weyde, L; Bertschinger, H J; Paris, M C J

    2012-07-01

    The African wild dog (Lycaon pictus) is an endangered exotic canid with less than 5500 animals remaining in the wild. Despite numerous strategies to conserve this species, numbers of free-living animals are in decline. It is a highly social species with a complex pack structure: separate male and female dominant hierarchies with, typically, participation of subdominant adults in the rearing of the dominant breeding pairs' pups. Basic reproductive knowledge is largely missing in this species, with only limited information available on the profile of reproductive hormones, based on non-invasive endocrine monitoring. The dominant or alpha male and female are reproductively active and the subdominants are generally reproductively suppressed. However, the occasional production of litters by subdominant females and evidence of multiple paternity within litters suggests that fertility of subordinates is not completely inhibited. In this respect, there are still considerable gaps in our knowledge about the mechanisms governing reproduction and reproductive suppression in African wild dogs, particularly the influence of dominance and pack structure on both male and female fertility. Given concerns over the long-term survival of this species, further research in this area is essential to provide valuable information for their captive breeding and conservation. Reproductive information can also be applied to the development of Assisted Reproductive Techniques for this species; the utility of which in African wild dog conservation is also discussed. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  8. Structure, Composition, and Properties of Silk from the African Wild Silkmoth, (Boisduval (Lepidoptera: Thaumetopoeidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Addis T. Kebede

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Silk cocoon nests, as well as the fiber structure, compositions, and properties of the African wild silkmoth, Anaphe panda , collected from Kakamega tropical rainforest (western Kenya were studied using scanning electron microscopy, high-pressureliquid chromatography, tensile tests, and thermogravmetric analysis, and they were compared with the industrial standard, Bombyx mori. Cocoon nests are complex structures made up of inner, middle, and outer layers. The inner hard parchment was found to protect a mass of (20–200 individual soft flossy cocoons that enclose the pupae. The outer surface of the cocoon nests was covered with a mass of hair-like bristles. Fibers contained crescent-shaped and globular cross-sections with nods at regular intervals. Alanine (34% and glycine (28% were the dominant fibroin amino acids observed. Total weight loss after degumming the cocoon nest was 25.6%. Degummed fibers showed higher moisture regain of 9% when compared with cocoon nests (8%. The fibers had 0.4 GPa breaking stress and 15.4% breaking strain. Total weight loss values after thermogravimetric analysis were 86% and 90% for degummed fibers and cocoon shells, respectively.

  9. The social and ecological integration of captive-raised adolescent male African elephants (Loxodonta africana into a wild population.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kate Evans

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: A rapid rise in the number of captive African elephants (Loxodonta africana used in the tourism industry in southern Africa and orphaned elephants in human care has led to concerns about their long-term management, particularly males. One solution is to release them into the wild at adolescence, when young males naturally leave their herd. However, this raises significant welfare concerns: little is known about how well released elephants integrate into wild populations and whether they pose a greater threat to humans than wild elephants. We document the release of three captive-raised adolescent male African elephants in the Okavango Delta, Botswana. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Despite having been part of a herd of working elephants for at least eight years, the three males progressively integrated into the complex fission-fusion society of wild bull elephants. In the three years following release, they showed no tendency to be closer to human habitation, and there were no significant differences between wild and captive-raised adolescent males in the total number of social interactions, size of ranges and habitat use. However, the captive-raised elephants sparred less and vocalised more, and spent more time alone and in smaller social groups. Thereafter the released elephants continued to expand their ranges and interact with both mixed-sex herds and males. One male was shot by farmers 94 months after release, along with ten wild elephants, on a ranch outside the protected area. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: We show that captive-raised adolescent male elephants can integrate into a wild population. Long-term studies are required to determine the longevity, breeding success, and eventual fate of released male elephants, but we identified no significant short-term welfare problems for the released elephants or recipient population. Release of captive-raised mammals with complex social systems is a husbandry option that should be

  10. Successful snakebite treatment in three juvenile African wild dogs (Lycaon pictus with polyvalent antivenom: A Namibian case report

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Florian J. Weise

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available This article reports the first documented treatment of venomous snakebite with a polyvalent snake antivenom from the South African Institute for Medical Research in endangered African wild dogs (Lycaon pictus. Three juvenile male animals (6.5 months of age showed clinical signs after being bitten by an unidentified venomous snake. The signs included loss of appetite, disorientation, impaired locomotion, excessive facial swelling, profuse salivation, reduced respiratory effort and an apparent depressed mental state. Intravenous treatment with isotonic Ringer lactate solution, hetastarch 6% and dexamethazone, subcutaneous administration of procaine benzylpenicillin and benzathine benzylpenicillin, and ultimately intravenous administration of the polyvalent snake antivenom resulted in the complete recovery of all three wild dogs.

  11. Response of different-sized herbivores to fire history

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hagenah, N.; Cromsigt, J.P.G.M.; Olff, H.; Prins, H.H.T.

    2006-01-01

    Retrieve original file from: http://edepot.wur.nl/121801 High herbivore densities and re-occurring fires are natural phenomenons that determine the structure and functioning of African savannas. Traditional burning practices have been intensified over the past years due to increased herbivore

  12. Trophy Hunting and Sustainability: Temporal Dynamics in Trophy Quality and Harvesting Patterns of Wild Herbivores in a Tropical Semi-Arid Savanna Ecosystem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muposhi, Victor K; Gandiwa, Edson; Bartels, Paul; Makuza, Stanley M; Madiri, Tinaapi H

    2016-01-01

    The selective nature of trophy hunting may cause changes in desirable phenotypic traits in harvested species. A decline in trophy size of preferred species may reduce hunting destination competitiveness thus compromising the sustainability of trophy hunting as a conservation tool. We explored the trophy quality and trends in harvesting patterns (i.e., 2004-2015) of Cape buffalo (Syncerus caffer), African elephant (Loxodonta africana), greater kudu (Tragelaphus strepsiceros) and sable (Hippotragus niger) in Matetsi Safari Area, northwest Zimbabwe. We used long-term data on horn and tusk size, age, quota size allocation and offtake levels of selected species. To analyse the effect of year, area and age on the trophy size, quota size and offtake levels, we used linear mixed models. One sample t-test was used to compare observed trophy size with Safari Club International (SCI) minimum score. Trophy sizes for Cape buffalo and African elephant were below the SCI minimum score. Greater kudu trophy sizes were within the minimum score threshold whereas sable trophy sizes were above the SCI minimum score between 2004 and 2015. Age at harvest for Cape buffalo, kudu and sable increased whilst that of elephant remained constant between 2004 and 2015. Quota size allocated for buffalo and the corresponding offtake levels declined over time. Offtake levels of African elephant and Greater kudu declined whilst the quota size did not change between 2004 and 2015. The quota size for sable increased whilst the offtake levels fluctuated without changing for the period 2004-2015. The trophy size and harvesting patterns in these species pose a conservation and management dilemma on the sustainability of trophy hunting in this area. We recommend: (1) temporal and spatial rotational resting of hunting areas to create refuge to improve trophy quality and maintenance of genetic diversity, and (2) introduction of variable trophy fee pricing system based on trophy size.

  13. Trophy Hunting and Sustainability: Temporal Dynamics in Trophy Quality and Harvesting Patterns of Wild Herbivores in a Tropical Semi-Arid Savanna Ecosystem.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Victor K Muposhi

    Full Text Available The selective nature of trophy hunting may cause changes in desirable phenotypic traits in harvested species. A decline in trophy size of preferred species may reduce hunting destination competitiveness thus compromising the sustainability of trophy hunting as a conservation tool. We explored the trophy quality and trends in harvesting patterns (i.e., 2004-2015 of Cape buffalo (Syncerus caffer, African elephant (Loxodonta africana, greater kudu (Tragelaphus strepsiceros and sable (Hippotragus niger in Matetsi Safari Area, northwest Zimbabwe. We used long-term data on horn and tusk size, age, quota size allocation and offtake levels of selected species. To analyse the effect of year, area and age on the trophy size, quota size and offtake levels, we used linear mixed models. One sample t-test was used to compare observed trophy size with Safari Club International (SCI minimum score. Trophy sizes for Cape buffalo and African elephant were below the SCI minimum score. Greater kudu trophy sizes were within the minimum score threshold whereas sable trophy sizes were above the SCI minimum score between 2004 and 2015. Age at harvest for Cape buffalo, kudu and sable increased whilst that of elephant remained constant between 2004 and 2015. Quota size allocated for buffalo and the corresponding offtake levels declined over time. Offtake levels of African elephant and Greater kudu declined whilst the quota size did not change between 2004 and 2015. The quota size for sable increased whilst the offtake levels fluctuated without changing for the period 2004-2015. The trophy size and harvesting patterns in these species pose a conservation and management dilemma on the sustainability of trophy hunting in this area. We recommend: (1 temporal and spatial rotational resting of hunting areas to create refuge to improve trophy quality and maintenance of genetic diversity, and (2 introduction of variable trophy fee pricing system based on trophy size.

  14. Evaluation of the Applicability of Different Age Determination Methods for Estimating Age of the Endangered African Wild Dog (Lycaon Pictus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Moreangels M Mbizah

    Full Text Available African wild dogs (Lycaon pictus are endangered and their population continues to decline throughout their range. Given their conservation status, more research focused on their population dynamics, population growth and age specific mortality is needed and this requires reliable estimates of age and age of mortality. Various age determination methods from teeth and skull measurements have been applied in numerous studies and it is fundamental to test the validity of these methods and their applicability to different species. In this study we assessed the accuracy of estimating chronological age and age class of African wild dogs, from dental age measured by (i counting cementum annuli (ii pulp cavity/tooth width ratio, (iii tooth wear (measured by tooth crown height (iv tooth wear (measured by tooth crown width/crown height ratio (v tooth weight and (vi skull measurements (length, width and height. A sample of 29 African wild dog skulls, from opportunistically located carcasses was analysed. Linear and ordinal regression analysis was done to investigate the performance of each of the six age determination methods in predicting wild dog chronological age and age class. Counting cementum annuli was the most accurate method for estimating chronological age of wild dogs with a 79% predictive capacity, while pulp cavity/tooth width ratio was also a reliable method with a 68% predictive capacity. Counting cementum annuli and pulp cavity/tooth width ratio were again the most accurate methods for separating wild dogs into three age classes (6-24 months; 25-60 months and > 60 months, with a McFadden's Pseudo-R2 of 0.705 and 0.412 respectively. The use of the cementum annuli method is recommended when estimating age of wild dogs since it is the most reliable method. However, its use is limited as it requires tooth extraction and shipping, is time consuming and expensive, and is not applicable to living individuals. Pulp cavity/tooth width ratio is a

  15. The biosynthesis, structure and gelatinization properties of starches from wild and cultivated African rice species (Oryza barthii and Oryza glaberrima).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Kai; Wambugu, Peterson W; Zhang, Bin; Wu, Alex Chi; Henry, Robert J; Gilbert, Robert G

    2015-09-20

    The molecular structure and gelatinization properties of starches from domesticated African rice (Oryza glaberrima) and its wild progenitor (Oryza barthii) are determined and comparison made with Asian domesticated rice (Oryza sativa), the commonest commercial rice. This suggests possible enzymatic processes contributing to the unique traits of the African varieties. These have similar starch structures, including smaller amylose molecules, but larger amounts of amylose chains across the whole amylose chain-length distribution, and higher amylose contents, than O. sativa. They also show a higher proportion of two- and three-lamellae spanning amylopectin branch chains (degree of polymerization 34-100) than O. sativa, which contributes to their higher gelatinization temperatures. Fitting amylopectin chain-length distribution with a biosynthesis-based mathematical model suggests that the reason for this difference might be because O. glaberrima and O. barthii have more active SSIIIa and/or less active SBEIIb enzymes. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Conservation challenge: human-herbivore conflict in Chebera Churchura National Park, Ethiopia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Datiko, Demeke; Bekele, Afework

    2013-12-01

    An investigation on human-herbivore conflict was carried out in CCNP between 2011 and 2012 in seven randomly selected villages (Chebera, Serri, Yora, Shita, Delba, Chuchra, Chewda) around the Park. A total of 312 household samples were identified for interview. Group discussion and field observation were also carried out. Among the respondents, the majority (83.9%) faced crop damage. African elephant (Loxodonta africana), Hippopotamus (Hippopotamus amphibious), African buffalo (Syncerus caffer), Desert warthog (Phacochoerus aethiopicus), Wild pig (Sus scrofa), Porcupine (Hystrix cristata), Vervet monkey (Cercopithecus aethiops) and Anubis baboon (Papio anubis) were identified as the most problematic animals in the area. However, buffalo, monkey and warthog were considered as the notorious pest. Crop damage and threats to human safety were the major problems encountered resulting in conflict between human and wildlife. Most respondents had a negative attitude towards the problem-posing animals. This will lead to a change in public attitude from one that supports wildlife conservation to sees wild herbivores as a threat and a potential negative consequence for wildlife conservation. Active measures have to be implemented to solve the problems and safeguard the future of the wildlife management in the park.

  17. Comparative value of wild and domestic plants in home gardens of a South African rural village

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    High, C

    2000-03-01

    Full Text Available Rural inhabitants make considerable use of wild resources from communal areas around their settlements, as well as from arable and residential plots. These wild resources compete with the main crops planted in arable plots and home gardens, but play...

  18. Monitoring stress in captive and free-ranging African wild dogs (Lycaon pictus) using faecal glucocorticoid metabolites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van der Weyde, L K; Martin, G B; Paris, M C J

    2016-01-15

    An understanding of stress physiology is important for species management because high levels of stress can hamper reproduction and affect an individual's ability to cope with threats to their survival, such as disease and human-wildlife conflict. A commonly used indicator of stress, faecal concentrations of cortisol metabolites (FCM), can be used to assess the impact of social, biological and environmental factors. Measurements of FCM are particularly valuable for endangered species that are logistically challenging to study and where non-invasive techniques are preferred. As the second most endangered canid in Africa, the African wild dog (Lycaon pictus) has been the focus of considerable conservation research, yet there is still little understanding of factors associated with stress, in either captive or free-ranging populations. The present study therefore aimed to determine whether stress levels differ between captive and free-ranging populations, and to detect social, biological and environmental factors that are stressful in these populations. Faecal samples were collected from 20 captive and 62 free-ranging animals. Within free-ranging populations, the sexes differed significantly, but there was no effect of social status, age or breeding period for either sex. Captive females had higher FCM concentrations than free-ranging females. In captive populations, FCM concentrations differed among zoos and with reproductive status in females, but were not related to age class or group-housing structure. In conclusion, FCM is a useful indicator of stress and should be considered an integrative aspect of management, for both in situ and ex situ African wild dog populations. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. A case of inbreeding in the African Wild Dog Lycaon pictus in the Kruger National Park

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Reich

    1978-09-01

    Full Text Available An observed case of inbreeding in a pack ot wild dogs Lycaon pictus in the Kruger National Park, Republic of South Africa, provides evidence for the phenomenon of dominance reversal in this species. This is believed to be the first recorded instance of inbreeding in Lycaon. Emigration of subordinate females from established packs of wild dogs has been documented in the Serengeti National Park and Ngorongoro Conservation Area in northern Tanzania, as well as in the Kruger National Park. However, the newly subordinate (ex-dominant female in the pack in which inbreeding has occurred has not emigrated in the 16 months since the change in her status. A possible explanation for this behaviour is given. As a result of this reversal, the pack contains at least two females capable of breeding, the subordinate of which is at least two years older than the dominant. This is considered the first record of such a breeding structure in Lycaon.

  20. The ties that bind: genetic relatedness predicts the fission and fusion of social groups in wild African elephants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Archie, Elizabeth A; Moss, Cynthia J; Alberts, Susan C

    2006-03-07

    Many social animals live in stable groups. In contrast, African savannah elephants (Loxodonta africana) live in unusually fluid, fission-fusion societies. That is, 'core' social groups are composed of predictable sets of individuals; however, over the course of hours or days, these groups may temporarily divide and reunite, or they may fuse with other social groups to form much larger social units. Here, we test the hypothesis that genetic relatedness predicts patterns of group fission and fusion among wild, female African elephants. Our study of a single Kenyan population spans 236 individuals in 45 core social groups, genotyped at 11 microsatellite and one mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) locus. We found that genetic relatedness predicted group fission; adult females remained with their first order maternal relatives when core groups fissioned temporarily. Relatedness also predicted temporary fusion between social groups; core groups were more likely to fuse with each other when the oldest females in each group were genetic relatives. Groups that shared mtDNA haplotypes were also significantly more likely to fuse than groups that did not share mtDNA. Our results suggest that associations between core social groups persist for decades after the original maternal kin have died. We discuss these results in the context of kin selection and its possible role in the evolution of elephant sociality.

  1. Intestinal Parasites and Anthelmintic Treatments in a Laboratory Colony of Wild-caught African Pouched Rats (Cricetomys ansorgei)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cullin, Cassandra O; Sellers, Matthew S; Rogers, Erin R; Scott, Kathleen E; Lee, Danielle N; Ophir, Alexander G; Jackson, Todd A

    2017-01-01

    African giant pouched rats (Cricetomys spp.) are large rodents native to subSaharan Africa. Wild-caught pouched rats identified as Cricetomys ansorgei (n = 49) were imported from Tanzania. A survey of gastrointestinal parasitism by fecal flotation revealed the presence of multiple parasites, including Nippostrongylus spp., Heterakis spp., Trichuris spp., Hymenolepis spp., Raillietina spp., and Eimeria spp. Oral self-administered fenbendazole (150 ppm), topical moxidectin (2 mg/kg), pyrantel pamoate (15 mg/kg), piperazine (100 mg/kg daily), and injectable ivermectin (0.25 mg/kg) were used to determine effective treatment options for the gastrointestinal parasites present in the colony. Pyrantel pamoate in a treat vehicle and piperazine in water bottles were easily administered and significantly reduced the numbers of animals shedding Nippostrongylus spp. and Heterakis spp. during the study. Moxidectin and ivermectin were clinically ineffective at reducing fecal egg shedding. Fenbendazole was most effective at clearing infection with Trichuris spp. Although 10 mg/kg praziquantel was ineffective, a single dose of 30 mg/kg praziquantel significantly reduced the number of African pouched rats that shed cestode embryos. A combination treatment may be necessary to successfully treat all parasites present in any given animal. PMID:28935004

  2. Improved semen collection method for wild felids: urethral catheterization yields high sperm quality in African lions (Panthera leo).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lueders, I; Luther, I; Scheepers, G; van der Horst, G

    2012-08-01

    For wild and domestic felids, electroejaculation (EE) is the most common semen collection method. However, the equipment is expensive, there is a risk of urine contamination and animals usually show strong muscular contraction despite general anesthesia. Accordingly, we tested the feasibility of a different approach using urethral catheterization (UC) in seven African lions, previously described for domestic cats only. After general anesthesia with the α2-agonist medetomidine (which also stimulates semen release into the urethra) and ketamine, a transrectal ultrasound was performed to locate the prostate. A commercial dog urinary catheter (2.6 or 3.3 mm in diameter) was advanced approximately 30 cm into the urethra to allow semen collection into the lumen of the catheter by capillary forces. After retraction, sperm volumes between of 422.86 ± 296.07 μl yielded motility of 88.83 ± 13.27% (mean ± SD) with a mean sperm concentration of 1.94 × 10(9)/ml. Here we describe a simple, field friendly and effective method to attain highly concentrated semen samples with excellent motility in lions and potentially other wild felid species as an alternative to electroejaculation. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Reduced reproductive function in wild baboons (Papio hamadryas anubis) related to natural consumption of the African black plum (Vitex doniana).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Higham, James P; Ross, Caroline; Warren, Ymke; Heistermann, Michael; MacLarnon, Ann M

    2007-09-01

    Several authors have suggested that the consumption of plant compounds may have direct effects on wild primate reproductive biology, but no studies have presented physiological evidence of such effects. Here, for two troops of olive baboons (Papio hamadryas anubis) at Gashaka-Gumti National Park, Nigeria, we show major seasonal increases in levels of fecal progesterone metabolites in females, and provide evidence that this is linked to the consumption of natural plant compounds. Increases in fecal progestogen excretion occurred seasonally in all females, in all reproductive states, including lactation. Detailed feeding data on the study animals showed that only one food species is consumed by both troops at the time of observed progestogen peaks, and at no other times of the year: the African black plum, Vitex doniana. Laboratory tests demonstrated the presence of high concentrations of progestogen-like compounds in V. doniana. Together with published findings linking the consumption of a related Vitex species (Vitex agnus castus) to increased progestogen levels in humans, our data suggest that natural consumption of V. doniana was a likely cause of the observed increases in progestogens. Levels of progestogen excretion in the study baboons during periods of V. doniana consumption are higher than those found during pregnancy, and prevent the expression of the sexual swelling, which is associated with ovulatory activity. As consortship and copulatory activity in baboons occur almost exclusively in the presence of a sexual swelling, V. doniana appears to act on cycling females as both a physiological contraceptive (simulating pregnancy in a similar way to some forms of the human contraceptive pill) and a social contraceptive (preventing sexual swelling, thus reducing association and copulation with males). The negative effects of V. doniana on reproduction may be counter-balanced by the wide-range of medicinal properties attributed to plants in this genus. This is

  4. 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...

  5. "It's a wild thing, waiting to get me": stance analysis of African Americans with diabetes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davis, Boyd H; Pope, Charlene; Mason, Peyton R; Magwood, Gayenell; Jenkins, Carolyn M

    2011-01-01

    This mixed methods study uses a unique approach from social science and linguistics methodologies, a combination of positioning theory and stance analysis, to examine how 20 African Americans with type 2 diabetes make sense of the practices that led to recurrent emergency department visits to identify needs for more effective intervention. In a purposive sample of postemergency department visit interviews with a same-race interviewer, people responded to open-ended questions reflecting on the decision to seek emergency department care. As applied to diabetes education, positioning theory explains that people use their language to position themselves toward their disease, their medications, and the changes in their lives. Transcriptions were coded using discourse analysis to categorize themes. As a form of triangulation, stance analysis measured language patterns using factor analysis to see when and how speakers revealed affect, attitude, and agentive choices for action. Final analysis revealed that one third of the sample exhibited high scores for positive agency or capacity for decision-making and self-management, while the rest expressed less control and more negative emotions and fears that may preclude self-management. This approach suggests a means to tailor diabetes education considering alternative approaches focused on communication for those facing barriers.

  6. Update on the Risk of Introduction of African Swine Fever by Wild Boar into Disease-Free European Union Countries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bosch, J; Rodríguez, A; Iglesias, I; Muñoz, M J; Jurado, C; Sánchez-Vizcaíno, J M; de la Torre, A

    2017-10-01

    Despite efforts to prevent the appearance and spread of African swine fever (ASF) in the European Union, several Member States are now affected (Lithuania, Poland, Latvia and Estonia). Disease appearance in 2014 was associated with multiple entrances linked to wild boar movement from endemic areas (EFSA Journal, 8, 2015, 1556), but the risk of new introductions remains high (Gallardo et al., Porcine Health Management, 1, and 21) as ASF continues to be active in endemic countries (Russian Federation, Belarus and Ukraine). Since 2014, the number of ASF notifications has increased substantially, particularly in wild boar (WB), in parallel with slow but constant geographical advance of the disease. This situation suggests a real risk of further disease spread into other Member States, posing a great threat to pig production in the EU. Following the principles of the risk-based veterinary surveillance, this article applies a methodology developed by De la Torre et al. (Transboundary and Emerging Diseases, 62, and 272) to assess the relative risk of new introductions of ASF by natural movements of WB according to the current epidemiological situation. This update incorporates the most recent available data and an improved version of the most important risk estimator: an optimized cartographic tool of WB distribution to analyse wild boar suitable habitat. The highest relative risk values were estimated for Slovakia (5) and Romania (5), followed by Finland (4), Czech Republic (3) and Germany (3). Relative risk for Romania and Finland is associated mainly with disease entrance from endemic areas such as the Russian Federation and Ukraine, where the disease is currently spreading; relative risk for Germany and Czech Republic is associated mainly with the potential progress of the disease through the EU, and relative risk for Slovakia is associated with both pathways. WB habitat is the most important risk estimator, whereas WB density is the least significant, suggesting

  7. 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.

  8. Pathological manifestations of feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) infection in wild African lions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roelke, Melody E; Brown, Meredith A; Troyer, Jennifer L; Winterbach, Hanlie; Winterbach, Christiaan; Hemson, Graham; Smith, Dahlem; Johnson, Randall C; Pecon-Slattery, Jill; Roca, Alfred L; Alexander, Kathleen A; Klein, Lin; Martelli, Paolo; Krishnasamy, Karthiyani; O'Brien, Stephen J

    2009-07-20

    Feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) causes AIDS in the domestic cat (Felis catus) but has not been explicitly associated with AIDS pathology in any of the eight free-ranging species of Felidae that are endemic with circulating FIV strains. African lion (Panthera leo) populations are infected with lion-specific FIV strains (FIVple), yet there remains uncertainty about the degree to which FIV infection impacts their health. Reported CD4+ T-lymphocyte depletion in FIVple-infected lions and anecdotal reports of lion morbidity associated with FIV seroprevalence emphasize the concern as to whether FIVple is innocuous or pathogenic. Here we monitored clinical, biochemical, histological and serological parameters among FIVple-positive (N=47) as compared to FIVple-negative (N=17) lions anesthetized and sampled on multiple occasions between 1999 and 2006 in Botswana. Relative to uninfected lions, FIVple-infected lions displayed a significant elevation in the prevalence of AIDS-defining conditions: lymphadenopathy, gingivitis, tongue papillomas, dehydration, and poor coat condition, as well as displaying abnormal red blood cell parameters, depressed serum albumin, and elevated liver enzymes and gamma globulin. Spleen and lymph node biopsies from free-ranging FIVple-infected lions (N=9) revealed evidence of lymphoid depletion, the hallmark pathology documented in immunodeficiency virus infections of humans (HIV-1), macaques, and domestic cats. We conclude that over time FIVple infections in free-ranging lions can lead to adverse clinical, immunological, and pathological outcomes in some individuals that parallel sequelae caused by lentivirus infection in humans (HIV), Asian macaques (SIV) and domestic cats (FIVfca).

  9. Intradermal tuberculin testing of wild African lions (Panthera leo) naturally exposed to infection with Mycobacterium bovis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keet, D F; Michel, A L; Bengis, R G; Becker, P; van Dyk, D S; van Vuuren, M; Rutten, V P M G; Penzhorn, B L

    2010-08-26

    African lions in the southern half of Kruger National Park (KNP) are infected with Mycobacterium bovis. Historically, reliable detection of mycobacteriosis in lions was limited to necropsy and microbiological analysis of lesion material collected from emaciated and ailing or repeat-offender lions. We report on a method of cervical intradermal tuberculin testing of lions and its interpretation capable of identifying natural exposure to M. bovis. Infected lions (n=52/95) were identified by detailed necropsy and mycobacterial culture. A large proportion of these confirmed infected lions (45/52) showed distinct responses to bovine tuberculin purified protein derivative (PPD) while responses to avian tuberculin PPD were variable and smaller. Confirmed uninfected lions from non-infected areas (n=11) responded variably to avian tuberculin PPD only. Various non-tuberculous mycobacteria (NTM) were cultured from 45/95 lions examined, of which 21/45 were co-infected with M. bovis. Co-infection with M. bovis and NTM did not influence skin reactions to bovine tuberculin PPD. Avian tuberculin PPD skin reactions were larger in M. bovis-infected lions compared to uninfected ones. Since NTM co-infections are likely to influence the outcome of skin testing, stricter test interpretation criteria were applied. When test data of bovine tuberculin PPD tests were considered on their own, as for a single skin test, sensitivity increased (80.8-86.5%) but false positive rate for true negatives (18.75%) remained unchanged. Finally, the adapted skin test procedure was shown not to be impeded by persistent Feline Immunodeficiency Virus(Ple) co-infection. Copyright 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  10. PATHOLOGICAL MANIFESTATIONS OF FELINE IMMUNODEFICIENCY VIRUS (FIV) INFECTION IN WILD AFRICAN LIONS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roelke, Melody E.; Brown, Meredith A.; Troyer, Jennifer L.; Winterbach, Hanlie; Winterbach, Christiaan; Hemson, Graham; Smith, Dahlem; Johnson, Randall C.; Pecon-Slattery, Jill; Roca, Alfred L.; Alexander, Katherine; Klein, Lin; Martinelli, Paulo; Krishnasamu, Karthiuani; O'Brien, Stephen J.

    2009-01-01

    Feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) causes AIDS in the domestic cat (Felis catus) but has not been explicitly associated with AIDS pathology in any of the eight free-ranging species of Felidae that are endemic with circulating FIV strains. African lion (Panthera leo) populations are infected with lion-specific FIV strains (FIVple), yet there remains uncertainty about the degree to which FIV infection impacts their health. Reported CD4+ T-lymphocyte depletion in FIVple infected lions and anecdotal reports of lion morbidity associated with FIV sero-prevalence emphasize the concern as to whether FIVple is innocuous or pathogenic. Here we monitored clinical, biochemical, histological and serological parameters among FIVple-positive (N=47) as compared to FIVple negative (N=17) lions anesthetized and sampled on multiple occasions between 1999 and 2006 in Botswana. Relative to uninfected lions, FIVple infected lions displayed a significant elevation in the prevalence of AIDS defining conditions: lymphandenopathy, gingivitis, tongue papillomas, dehydration, and poor coat condition, as well as displaying abnormal red blood cell parameters and elevated liver enzymes and serum proteins. Spleen and lymph node laparoscopic biopsies from free-ranging FIVple infected lions (N=8) revealed evidence of lymphoid depletion, the hallmark pathology documented in immunodefieciency virus infections of humans (HIV-1), macaques, and domestic cats. We conclude that over time FIVple infections in free-ranging lions can lead to adverse clinical, immunological, and pathological outcomes in some individuals that parallel sequelae caused by lentivirus infection in humans (HIV), Asian macaques (SIV) and domestic cats (FIVfca). PMID:19464039

  11. Evaluating the status of African wild dogs Lycaon pictus and cheetahs Acinonyx jubatus through tourist-based photographic surveys in the Kruger National Park [corrected].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marnewick, Kelly; Ferreira, Sam M; Grange, Sophie; Watermeyer, Jessica; Maputla, Nakedi; Davies-Mostert, Harriet T

    2014-01-01

    The Kruger National Park is a stronghold for African wild dog Lycaon pictus and cheetah Acinonyx jubatus conservation in South Africa. Tourist photographic surveys have been used to evaluate the minimum number of wild dogs and cheetahs alive over the last two decades. Photographic-based capture-recapture techniques for open populations were used on data collected during a survey done in 2008/9. Models were run for the park as a whole and per region (northern, central, southern). A total of 412 (329-495; SE 41.95) cheetahs and 151 (144-157; SE 3.21) wild dogs occur in the Kruger National Park. Cheetah capture probabilities were affected by time (number of entries) and sex, whereas wild dog capture probabilities were affected by the region of the park. When plotting the number of new individuals identified against the number of entries received, the addition of new wild dogs to the survey reached an asymptote at 210 entries, but cheetahs did not reach an asymptote. The cheetah population of Kruger appears to be acceptable, while the wild dog population size and density are of concern. The effectiveness of tourist-based surveys for estimating population sizes through capture-recapture analyses is shown.

  12. Evaluating the Status of and African Wild Dogs Lycaon pictus and Cheetahs Acinonyx jubatus through Tourist-based Photographic Surveys in the Kruger National Park

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marnewick, Kelly; Ferreira, Sam M.; Grange, Sophie; Watermeyer, Jessica; Maputla, Nakedi; Davies-Mostert, Harriet T.

    2014-01-01

    The Kruger National Park is a stronghold for African wild dog Lycaon pictus and cheetah Acinonyx jubatus conservation in South Africa. Tourist photographic surveys have been used to evaluate the minimum number of wild dogs and cheetahs alive over the last two decades. Photographic-based capture-recapture techniques for open populations were used on data collected during a survey done in 2008/9. Models were run for the park as a whole and per region (northern, central, southern). A total of 412 (329–495; SE 41.95) cheetahs and 151 (144–157; SE 3.21) wild dogs occur in the Kruger National Park. Cheetah capture probabilities were affected by time (number of entries) and sex, whereas wild dog capture probabilities were affected by the region of the park. When plotting the number of new individuals identified against the number of entries received, the addition of new wild dogs to the survey reached an asymptote at 210 entries, but cheetahs did not reach an asymptote. The cheetah population of Kruger appears to be acceptable, while the wild dog population size and density are of concern. The effectiveness of tourist-based surveys for estimating population sizes through capture-recapture analyses is shown. PMID:24465998

  13. Evaluating the status of African wild dogs Lycaon pictus and cheetahs Acinonyx jubatus through tourist-based photographic surveys in the Kruger National Park [corrected].

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kelly Marnewick

    Full Text Available The Kruger National Park is a stronghold for African wild dog Lycaon pictus and cheetah Acinonyx jubatus conservation in South Africa. Tourist photographic surveys have been used to evaluate the minimum number of wild dogs and cheetahs alive over the last two decades. Photographic-based capture-recapture techniques for open populations were used on data collected during a survey done in 2008/9. Models were run for the park as a whole and per region (northern, central, southern. A total of 412 (329-495; SE 41.95 cheetahs and 151 (144-157; SE 3.21 wild dogs occur in the Kruger National Park. Cheetah capture probabilities were affected by time (number of entries and sex, whereas wild dog capture probabilities were affected by the region of the park. When plotting the number of new individuals identified against the number of entries received, the addition of new wild dogs to the survey reached an asymptote at 210 entries, but cheetahs did not reach an asymptote. The cheetah population of Kruger appears to be acceptable, while the wild dog population size and density are of concern. The effectiveness of tourist-based surveys for estimating population sizes through capture-recapture analyses is shown.

  14. The relation between herbivore density and relative resource ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The relation between kudu density and the relative density of habitat patches in each landscape was significant, with exponential models producing more significant statistics than linear models. Regressions of resource density against animal density are useful to understand 'carrying capacity' for wild herbivores, and ...

  15. Kinetic and equilibrium studies of Pb(II and Cd(II adsorption on African wild mango (Irvingia gabonensis shell

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    F. A. Adekola

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available The adsorption behavior of NaOH-activated African wild mango (Irvingia gabonensis shell with respect to Pb2+ and Cd2+ has been studied in order to consider its application to purify metal finishing waste water. The optimum conditions of adsorption were determined by investigating the initial metal ions concentration, contact time, adsorbent dose, pH value of aqueous solution and temperature. The extent of adsorption of metal ions was investigated by batch method using metal concentrations in solution ranging from 5-200 mg/L. The adsorption efficiencies were found to be pH dependent, with maximum metals uptake recorded at pH of 5. The equilibrium adsorption capacity for lead and cadmium ions were obtained from Freundlich, Langmuir, Temkin and DRK isotherms and the experimental data were found to fit best the Langmuir isotherm with values of 21.28 and 40.00 mg/g for Cd(II and Pb(II ions, respectively. The Pseudo-second order kinetics model had the best fitting for lead and cadmium adsorption kinetic data. The thermodynamic investigation showed that the adsorption processes of both metals are exothermic. An optimum concentration of 0.05 M HCl was found to be adequate for the regeneration of the spent adsorbent with recovery values of 78% and 71% for Pb2+ and Cd2+ respectively from the spent adsorbent. The results revealed that lead and cadmium are considerably adsorbed on the adsorbent and could be an economic method for the removal of these metals from aqueous solutions.

  16. A Cartographic Tool for Managing African Swine Fever in Eurasia: Mapping Wild Boar Distribution Based on the Quality of Available Habitats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bosch, J; Iglesias, I; Muñoz, M J; de la Torre, A

    2017-12-01

    The current African swine fever (ASF) epidemic in Eurasia represents a risk for the swine industry with devastating socio-economic and political consequences. Wild boar appears to be a key factor in maintaining the disease in endemic areas (mainly the Russian Federation) and spreading the disease across borders, including within the European Union. To help predict and interpret the dynamics of ASF infection, we developed a standardized distribution map based on global land cover vegetation (GLOBCOVER) that quantifies the quality of available habitats (QAH) for wild boar across Eurasia as an indirect index for quantifying numbers of wild boar. QAHs were estimated using a seven-level scale based on expert opinion and found to correlate closely with georeferenced presence of wild boar (n = 22 362): the highest wild boar densities (74.47%) were found in areas at the two highest QAH levels, while the lowest densities (5.66%) were found in areas at the lowest QAH levels. Mapping notifications from 2007 to 2016 onto the QAH map showed that in endemic areas, 60% of ASF notifications occurred in domestic pigs, mostly in agricultural landscapes (QAHs 1.75 and 1) containing low-biosecurity domestic pig farms. In the EU, in contrast, 95% of ASF notifications occurred in wild boar, within natural landscapes (QAH 2). These results suggest that the QAH map can be a useful epi-tool for defining risk scenarios and identifying potential travel corridors for ASF. This tool will help inform resource allocation decisions and improve prevention, control and surveillance of ASF and potentially of other diseases affecting swine and wild boar in Eurasia. © 2016 Blackwell Verlag GmbH.

  17. 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.

  18. Seasonal patterns of hormones, macroparasites, and microparasites in wild African ungulates: the interplay among stress, reproduction, and disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cizauskas, Carrie A; Turner, Wendy C; Pitts, Neville; Getz, Wayne M

    2015-01-01

    Sex hormones, reproductive status, and pathogen load all affect stress. Together with stress, these factors can modulate the immune system and affect disease incidence. Thus, it is important to concurrently measure these factors, along with their seasonal fluctuations, to better understand their complex interactions. Using steroid hormone metabolites from fecal samples, we examined seasonal correlations among zebra and springbok stress, reproduction, gastrointestinal (GI) parasite infections, and anthrax infection signatures in zebra and springbok in Etosha National Park (ENP), Namibia, and found strong seasonal effects. Infection intensities of all three GI macroparasites examined (strongyle helminths, Strongyloides helminths, and Eimeria coccidia) were highest in the wet season, concurrent with the timing of anthrax outbreaks. Parasites also declined with increased acquired immune responses. We found hormonal evidence that both mares and ewes are overwhelmingly seasonal breeders in ENP, and that reproductive hormones are correlated with immunosuppression and higher susceptibility to GI parasite infections. Stress hormones largely peak in the dry season, particularly in zebra, when parasite infection intensities are lowest, and are most strongly correlated with host mid-gestation rather than with parasite infection intensity. Given the evidence that GI parasites can cause host pathology, immunomodulation, and immunosuppression, their persistence in ENP hosts without inducing chronic stress responses supports the hypothesis that hosts are tolerant of their parasites. Such tolerance would help to explain the ubiquity of these organisms in ENP herbivores, even in the face of their potential immunomodulatory trade-offs with anti-anthrax immunity.

  19. Seasonal patterns of hormones, macroparasites, and microparasites in wild African ungulates: the interplay among stress, reproduction, and disease.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carrie A Cizauskas

    Full Text Available Sex hormones, reproductive status, and pathogen load all affect stress. Together with stress, these factors can modulate the immune system and affect disease incidence. Thus, it is important to concurrently measure these factors, along with their seasonal fluctuations, to better understand their complex interactions. Using steroid hormone metabolites from fecal samples, we examined seasonal correlations among zebra and springbok stress, reproduction, gastrointestinal (GI parasite infections, and anthrax infection signatures in zebra and springbok in Etosha National Park (ENP, Namibia, and found strong seasonal effects. Infection intensities of all three GI macroparasites examined (strongyle helminths, Strongyloides helminths, and Eimeria coccidia were highest in the wet season, concurrent with the timing of anthrax outbreaks. Parasites also declined with increased acquired immune responses. We found hormonal evidence that both mares and ewes are overwhelmingly seasonal breeders in ENP, and that reproductive hormones are correlated with immunosuppression and higher susceptibility to GI parasite infections. Stress hormones largely peak in the dry season, particularly in zebra, when parasite infection intensities are lowest, and are most strongly correlated with host mid-gestation rather than with parasite infection intensity. Given the evidence that GI parasites can cause host pathology, immunomodulation, and immunosuppression, their persistence in ENP hosts without inducing chronic stress responses supports the hypothesis that hosts are tolerant of their parasites. Such tolerance would help to explain the ubiquity of these organisms in ENP herbivores, even in the face of their potential immunomodulatory trade-offs with anti-anthrax immunity.

  20. 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.

  1. 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...

  2. Thermal limits of wild and laboratory strains of two African malaria vector species, Anopheles arabiensis and Anopheles funestus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lyons Candice L

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Malaria affects large parts of the developing world and is responsible for almost 800,000 deaths annually. As climates change, concerns have arisen as to how this vector-borne disease will be impacted by changing rainfall patterns and warming temperatures. Despite the importance and controversy surrounding the impact of climate change on the potential spread of this disease, little information exists on the tolerances of several of the vector species themselves. Methods Using a ramping protocol (to assess critical thermal limits - CT and plunge protocol (to assess lethal temperature limits - LT information on the thermal tolerance of two of Africa’s important malaria vectors, Anopheles arabiensis and Anopheles funestus was collected. The effects of age, thermal acclimation treatment, sex and strain (laboratory versus wild adults were investigated for CT determinations for each species. The effects of age and sex for adults and life stage (larvae, pupae, adults were investigated for LT determinations. Results In both species, females are more tolerant to low and high temperatures than males; larvae and pupae have higher upper lethal limits than do adults. Thermal acclimation of adults has large effects in some instances but small effects in others. Younger adults tend to be more tolerant of low or high temperatures than older age groups. Long-standing laboratory colonies are sufficiently similar in thermal tolerance to field-collected animals to provide reasonable surrogates when making inferences about wild population responses. Differences between these two vectors in their thermal tolerances, especially in larvae and pupae, are plausibly a consequence of different habitat utilization. Conclusions Limited plasticity is characteristic of the adults of these vector species relative to others examined to date, suggesting limited scope for within-generation change in thermal tolerance. These findings and the greater tolerance

  3. 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.

  4. An Ecological Paradox: The African Wild Dog (Lycaon Pictus Is Not Attracted to Water Points When Water Is Scarce in Hwange National Park, Zimbabwe.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Henry Ndaimani

    Full Text Available In dry biomes, spatio-temporal variation in surface water resource stocks is pervasive, with unknown effects on the ranging behaviour of large predators. This study assessed the effect of spatial variation in surface water resources on the ranging behaviour of the African wild dog (Lycaon pictus. We analyzed data for 1992 (dry year with 20 water points and 2000 (wet year with 30 water points against presence-only data for five packs of L. pictus in a part of Hwange National Park and adjacent smallholder communal farming areas in western Zimbabwe. Modelling the potential habitat for L. pictus using Maxent with distance from water points (Dw and Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI as predictor variables was successful for 2000 (AUC = 0.793 but not successful for 1992 (AUC = 0.423, with L. pictus probability of occurrence near water points being more for year 2000 than for year 1992. The predicted L. pictus range was wider in 1992 (~13888.1 km2 than in 2000 (~958.4 km2 (Test of Proportions, χ2 = 124.52, df = 1, P = 0.00. Using the 2nd order Multitype Nearest Neighbour Distance Function (Gcross, we also observed significant attraction between L. pictus and water points within only ~1km radius for 1992 but up to ~8km radius for 2000. Our study reinforced the notion that surface water resources attract wild dogs in the savannahs but paradoxically less so when water resources are scarce. In particular, our study furthers current understanding of the effects of changing water availability regimes on the endangered L. pictus, providing evidence that the endangered predator's home range encroaches into potential ecological traps (i.e., smallholder communal farming areas when water resources are scarce.

  5. 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

  6. Salinity-related variation in gene expression in wild populations of the black-chinned tilapia from various West African coastal marine, estuarine and freshwater habitats

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tine, Mbaye; McKenzie, David J.; Bonhomme, François; Durand, Jean-Dominique

    2011-01-01

    This study measured the relative expression of the genes coding for Na +, K +-ATPase 1α(NAKA), voltage-dependent anion channel (VDAC), cytochrome c oxidase-1 (COX), and NADH dehydrogenase (NDH), in gills of six wild populations of a West African tilapia species, acclimatised to a range of seasonal (rainy or dry) salinities in coastal, estuarine and freshwater sites. Previous laboratory experiments have demonstrated that these genes, involved in active ion transport, oxidative phosphorylation, and intra-cellular ATP transport, are relatively over-expressed in gill tissues of this species acclimated to high salinity. Positive correlations between relative expression and ambient salinity were found for all genes in the wild populations (Spearman rank correlation, p < 0.05), although for some genes these were only significant in either the rainy season or dry season. Most significantly, however, relative expression was positively correlated amongst the four genes, indicating that they are functionally interrelated in adaptation of Sarotherodon melanotheron to salinity variations in its natural environment. In the rainy season, when salinity was unstable and ranged between zero and 37 psu across the sites, overall mean expression of the genes was higher than in the dry season, which may have reflected more variable particularly sudden fluctuations in salinity and poorer overall water quality. In the dry season, when the salinity is more stable but ranged between zero and 100 psu across the sites, NAKA, NDH and VDAC expression revealed U-shaped relationships with lowest relative expression at salinities approaching seawater, between 25 and 45 psu. Although it is not simple to establish direct relationship between gene expression levels and energy requirement for osmoregulation, these results may indicate that costs of adaptation to salinity are lowest in seawater, the natural environment of this species. While S. melanotheron can colonise environments with extremely

  7. Metallothionein from Wild Populations of the African Catfish Clarias gariepinus: From Sequence, Protein Expression and Metal Binding Properties to Transcriptional Biomarker of Metal Pollution

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ethel M’kandawire

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Anthropogenic pollution with heavy metals is an on-going concern throughout the world, and methods to monitor release and impact of heavy metals are of high importance. With a view to probe its suitability as molecular biomarker of metal pollution, this study has determined a coding sequence for metallothionein of the African sharptooth catfish Clarias gariepinus. The gene product was recombinantly expressed in Escherichia coli in presence of Zn(II, Cd(II, or Cu, and characterised by Electrospray Ionisation Mass Spectrometry and elemental analysis. C. gariepinus MT displays typical features of fish MTs, including 20 conserved cysteines, and seven bound divalent cations (Zn(II or Cd(II when saturated. Livers from wild C. gariepinus fish collected in all three seasons from four different sites on the Kafue River of Zambia were analysed for their metal contents and for MT expression levels by quantitative PCR. Significant correlations were found between Zn and Cu levels and MT expression in livers, with MT expression clearly highest at the most polluted site, Chililabombwe, which is situated in the Copperbelt region. Based on our findings, hepatic expression of MT from C. gariepinus may be further developed as a major molecular biomarker of heavy metal pollution resulting from mining activities in this region.

  8. Metallothionein from Wild Populations of the African Catfish Clarias gariepinus: From Sequence, Protein Expression and Metal Binding Properties to Transcriptional Biomarker of Metal Pollution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    M'kandawire, Ethel; Mierek-Adamska, Agnieszka; Stürzenbaum, Stephen R; Choongo, Kennedy; Yabe, John; Mwase, Maxwell; Saasa, Ngonda; Blindauer, Claudia A

    2017-07-18

    Anthropogenic pollution with heavy metals is an on-going concern throughout the world, and methods to monitor release and impact of heavy metals are of high importance. With a view to probe its suitability as molecular biomarker of metal pollution, this study has determined a coding sequence for metallothionein of the African sharptooth catfish Clarias gariepinus . The gene product was recombinantly expressed in Escherichia coli in presence of Zn(II), Cd(II), or Cu, and characterised by Electrospray Ionisation Mass Spectrometry and elemental analysis. C. gariepinus MT displays typical features of fish MTs, including 20 conserved cysteines, and seven bound divalent cations (Zn(II) or Cd(II)) when saturated. Livers from wild C. gariepinus fish collected in all three seasons from four different sites on the Kafue River of Zambia were analysed for their metal contents and for MT expression levels by quantitative PCR. Significant correlations were found between Zn and Cu levels and MT expression in livers, with MT expression clearly highest at the most polluted site, Chililabombwe, which is situated in the Copperbelt region. Based on our findings, hepatic expression of MT from C. gariepinus may be further developed as a major molecular biomarker of heavy metal pollution resulting from mining activities in this region.

  9. Wetlands, wild Bovidae species richness and sheep density delineate risk of Rift Valley fever outbreaks in the African continent and Arabian Peninsula.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael G Walsh

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Rift Valley fever (RVF is an emerging, vector-borne viral zoonosis that has significantly impacted public health, livestock health and production, and food security over the last three decades across large regions of the African continent and the Arabian Peninsula. The potential for expansion of RVF outbreaks within and beyond the range of previous occurrence is unknown. Despite many large national and international epidemics, the landscape epidemiology of RVF remains obscure, particularly with respect to the ecological roles of wildlife reservoirs and surface water features. The current investigation modeled RVF risk throughout Africa and the Arabian Peninsula as a function of a suite of biotic and abiotic landscape features using machine learning methods. Intermittent wetland, wild Bovidae species richness and sheep density were associated with increased landscape suitability to RVF outbreaks. These results suggest the role of wildlife hosts and distinct hydrogeographic landscapes in RVF virus circulation and subsequent outbreaks may be underestimated. These results await validation by studies employing a deeper, field-based interrogation of potential wildlife hosts within high risk taxa.

  10. Large herbivores that strive mightily but eat and drink as friends.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Boer, W F; Prins, H H T

    1990-02-01

    Grazing in patches of Cynodon dactylon and of Sporobolus spicatus by four large herbivores, and the interaction between these sedentary herbivores was studied in Lake Manyara National Park, northern Tanzania. The herbivores were the African buffalo, Syncerus caffer; the African elephan, Loxodonta africana; the Burchell's zebra, Equus burchelli; and the wildebeest, Connochaetus taurinus. Four different hypotheses of the interactions between the herbivores were tested, viz., increased predator detection/protection through association of species, facilitation of the food intake through the influence of other species, use by other species of the food manipulation strategy of buffalo, and interspecific competition for food. On the level of a single day, zebra and wildebeest were symbiotic, which could have been caused by an increased chance of predator detection. A similar association between buffalo and wildebeest or zebra was also detected on C. dactylon grasslands. There was no indication of facilitation between any of the herbivores. Buffalo had a despotic relationship with elephant, that is the elephant's consumption was lowered when buffalo had visited a patch prior to their arrival. When elephant and buffalo arrived at the same time there appeared to be scramble competition between them.Habitat overlap was calculated for four pairs of species. In conjunction with the analyses of the patch visits, it was concluded that a small overlap was associated with interspecific competition and a large habitat overlap was associated with symbiosis.

  11. The logistic model-generated carrying capacities for wild herbivores ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Jesse

    Under this formulation, both carrying capacity and exchange ratios are endogenously determined (Kinyua and Njoka, 2001), making it possible to empirically estimate the population growth models for Grant's gazelle, Thompson's gazelle and Zebra. (1) for i = 1,…,n-1 j = 1,…,2 and i ≠ j. Here Hit+1, measured in animal units, ...

  12. 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

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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),...

  16. 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

  17. Mapping Forage Resources Using Earth Observation Data: A Case Study to Assess the Relationship Between Herbaceous and Woody Cover Components as Determinants of Large Herbivore Distribution in Sub-Saharan Africa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanan, N. P.; Kahiu, M. N.

    2016-12-01

    Grazing systems are important for survival of humans, livestock and wildlife in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). They are mainly found in the arid and semi-arid regions and are characterized by naturally occurring tree-grass vegetation mixtures ("savannas"), low and erratic rainfall, low human populations, and scanty water resources. Due to the scarce population and perceived low resource base they have been marginalized for decades, if not centuries. However, their economic and environmental significance, particularly their role as foraging lands for livestock and wildlife cannot be underrated. SSA natural grazing systems comprise a significant source of livelihood, where millions of people depend on pastoralism as a source of food and income. Further, the African savannas support diverse flora and charismatic large herbivore and carnivore guilds. The above considerations motivate a more detailed study of the composition, temporal and spatial variability of foraging resources in SSA arid and semi-arid regions. We have therefore embarked on a research to map Africa foraging resources by partitioning MODIS total leaf area index (LAIA) time series into its woody (LAIW) and herbaceous (LAIH) constituents as proxies for grazing and browsing resources, respectively. Using the portioned LAI estimates we will develop a case study to assess how forage resources affect distribution and abundance of large herbivores in Africa. In our case study we explore two separate but related hypothesis: i) small and medium sized mammalian herbivore numbers will peak at intermediate biomass (LAIH for grazers and LAIW for browsers), since they optimize on forage quantity and quality. Conversely, large-body mammalian herbivores have the ability to process high quantity-low quality food, hence, we hypothesize that ii) larger herbivores will tend to be more common in high forage areas irrespective of forage quality. We will use LAIH and LAIW retrievals to compute annual average leaf area duration

  18. 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

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. Performance of Wild Fruit Marketing in Nigeria: A Case Study of ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Performance of Wild Fruit Marketing in Nigeria: A Case Study of African Star Apple ( Chrysophllum ... This study examined marketing of wild fruits in Nigeria using African Star Apple as a case study. ... EMAIL FULL TEXT EMAIL FULL TEXT

  6. Agriculture sows pests: how crop domestication, host shifts, and agricultural intensification can create insect pests from herbivores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bernal, Julio S; Medina, Raul F

    2018-04-01

    We argue that agriculture as practiced creates pests. We use three examples (Corn leafhopper, Dalbulus maidis; Western corn rootworm, Diabrotica virgifera virgifera; Cotton fleahopper, Pseudatomoscelis seriatus) to illustrate: firstly, how since its origins, agriculture has proven conducive to transforming selected herbivores into pests, particularly through crop domestication and spread, and agricultural intensification, and; secondly, that the herbivores that became pests were among those hosted by crop wild relatives or associates, and were pre-adapted either as whole species or component subpopulations. Two of our examples, Corn leafhopper and Western corn rootworm, illustrate how following a host shift to a domesticated host, emergent pests 'hopped' onto crops and rode expansion waves to spread far beyond the geographic ranges of their wild hosts. Western corn rootworm exemplifies how an herbivore-tolerant crop was left vulnerable when it was bred for yield and protected with insecticides. Cotton fleahopper illustrates how removing preferred wild host plants from landscapes and replacing them with crops, allows herbivores with flexible host preferences to reach pest-level populations. We conclude by arguing that in the new geological epoch we face, the Anthropocene, we can improve agriculture by looking to our past to identify and avoid missteps of early and recent farmers. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Wild and domestic pig interactions at the wildlife-livestock interface of Murchison Falls National Park, Uganda, and the potential association with African Swine Fever outbreaks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Esther eKukielka

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Bushpigs (Potamochoerus larvatus and warthogs (Phacochoerus africanus, which are widely distributed in Eastern Africa, are likely to cohabitate in the same environment with domestic pigs, facilitating the transmission of shared pathogens. However, potential interactions between bushpig, warthog and domestic pig and the resulting potential circulation of infectious diseases have rarely been investigated in Africa to date. In order to understand the dynamics of such interactions and the potential influence of human behavior and husbandry practices on them, individual interviews (n=233 and participatory rural appraisals (n=11 were carried out among Ugandan pig farmers at the edge of Murchison Falls National Park, northern Uganda. In addition, as an example of possible implications of wild and domestic pig interactions, nonlinear multivariate analysis (multiple correspondence analyses was used to investigate the potential association between the aforementioned factors (interactions and human behavior and practices and farmer reported ASF outbreaks. No direct interactions between wild pigs and domestic pig were reported in our study area. However, indirect interactions were described by 83 (35.6 % of the participants and were identified to be more common at water sources during the dry season. Equally, eight (3.4% farmers declared exposing their domestic pig to raw hunting leftovers of wild pigs. The exploratory analysis performed suggested possible associations between the farmer reported ASF outbreaks and indirect interactions, free-range housing systems, dry season, and having a warthog burrow less than 3km from the household. Our study was useful to gather local knowledge and to identify knowledge gaps about potential interactions between wild and domestic pig in this area. This information could be useful to facilitate the design of future observational studies to better understand the potential transmission of pathogens between wild and

  8. 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

  9. 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 ...

  10. Wild harvest

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cruz-Garcia, G.S.; Struik, P.C.; Johnson, D.E.

    2016-01-01

    Rice fields provide not only a staple food but are also bio-diverse and multi-functional ecosystems. Wild food plants are important elements of biodiversity in rice fields and are critical components to the subsistence of poor farmers. The spatial and seasonal distribution of wild food plants

  11. 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

  12. Evaluating herbivore extinction probabilities in Addo Elephant ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Abstract. Population extinction evaluations, based on the model developed by Dennis et al. (1991) that did not take density dependence into account and that were based on census data, suggest that many of the herbivore species in Addo Elephant National Park (AENP) are vulnerable to local extinction. As a result of low ...

  13. 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.

  14. Wild and domesticated mushroom consumption in Nigeria ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    African Crop Science Journal ... On the other hand, if nutrition analysis reveals different nutrition parameters for both types of mushrooms, 43.3% opted for cultivated mushroom, 42.2%, wild; 12.2% both; while 2.2% would eat ... Keywords: Consumption pattern, Lentinus squarrosulus, nutrition, perception, wild mushroom ...

  15. A checklist of the reptiles and amphibians found in protected areas along the South African Wild Coast, with notes on conservation implications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jan A. Venter

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available We surveyed six protected areas along the Wild Coast of the Eastern Cape, South Africa, to determine general herpetofaunal diversity as well as the representation of species of special conservation concern. Visual encounter survey methods and standard Y-shape trap arrays were used to conduct surveys from 2011 to 2013. A total of 59 species (22 amphibians and 37 reptiles were recorded. A number of previously unknown populations of threatened species and one potential novel species were discovered in these protected areas, and the known ranges of several other species were extended. A total of 243 quarter-degree grid-cell unit records were documented, of which 90 (23% amphibians and 50% reptiles represented the first records for the area. Amphibian and reptile diversity increased along the coast and a number of species of conservation concern were well represented in current protected areas. Our study provides a comprehensive amphibian and reptile checklist for an under-sampled region and highlights the importance of baseline data for improving conservation management. Conservation implications: Small protected areas play an important role in conserving a number of threatened herpetofaunal species along the Wild Coast. The region is currently under significant and increasing pressure from anthropogenic-induced environmental degradation, which affects biodiversity and subsequently the local inhabitants. The information presented here represents an important baseline for future conservation management.

  16. Effects of GnRH vaccination in wild and captive African Elephant bulls (Loxodonta africana on reproductive organs and semen quality.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Imke Lueders

    Full Text Available Although the African elephant (Loxodonta africana is classified as endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN, in some isolated habitats in southern Africa, contraception is of major interest due to local overpopulation. GnRH vaccination has been promoted as a non-invasive contraceptive measure for population management of overabundant wildlife. We tested the efficacy of this treatment for fertility control in elephant bulls.In total, 17 male African elephants that were treated with a GnRH vaccine were examined in two groups. In the prospective study group 1 (n = 11 bulls, ages: 8-36 years, semen quality, the testes, seminal vesicles, ampullae and prostate, which were all measured by means of transrectal ultrasound, and faecal androgen metabolite concentrations were monitored over a three-year period. Each bull in the prospective study received 5 ml of Improvac® (1000 μg GnRH conjugate intramuscularly after the first examination, followed by a booster six weeks later and thereafter every 5-7 months. In a retrospective study group (group 2, n = 6, ages: 19-33 years, one examination was performed on bulls which had been treated with GnRH vaccine for 5-11 years.In all bulls of group 1, testicular and accessory sex gland sizes decreased significantly after the third vaccination. In six males examined prior to vaccination and again after more than five vaccinations, the testis size was reduced by 57.5%. Mean testicular height and length decreased from 13.3 ± 2.6 cm x 15.2 ± 2.8 cm at the beginning to 7.6 ± 2.1 cm x 10.2 ± 1.8 cm at the end of the study. Post pubertal bulls (>9 years, n = 6 examined prior to vaccination produced ejaculates with viable spermatozoa (volume: 8-175 ml, sperm concentration: 410-4000x106/ml, total motility: 0-90%, while after 5-8 injections, only 50% of these bulls produced ejaculates with a small number of immotile spermatozoa. The ejaculates of group 2 bulls (vaccinated >8 times were

  17. Wild Marshmallows.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kallas, John N.

    1984-01-01

    Provides information for teaching a unit on wild plants, including resources to use, plants to learn, safety considerations, list of plants (with scientific name, edible parts, and uses), list of plants that might cause allergic reactions when eaten. Also describes the chickweed, bull thistle, and common mallow. (BC)

  18. 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

  19. 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.

  20. Hypothesis for the causes and periodicity of repetitive linear enamel hypoplasia in large, wild African (Pan troglodytes and Gorilla gorilla) and Asian (Pongo pygmaeus) apes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skinner, Mark F; Hopwood, David

    2004-03-01

    Repetitive linear enamel hypoplasia (rLEH) is often observed in recent large-bodied apes from Africa and Asia as well as Mid- to Late Miocene sites from Spain to China. The ubiquity and periodicity of rLEH are not understood. Its potential as an ontogenetic marker of developmental stress in threatened species (as well as their ancient relatives) makes rLEH an important if enigmatic problem. We report research designed to show the periodicity of rLEH among West African Pan troglodytes (12 male, 32 female), Gorilla gorilla (10 male, 10 female), and Bornean and Sumatran Pongo pygmaeus (11 male, 9 female, 9 unknown) from collections in Europe. Two methods were employed. In the common chimpanzees and gorillas, the space between adjacent, macroscopically visible LEH grooves on teeth with two or more episodes was expressed as an absolute measure and as a ratio of complete unworn crown height. In the orangutans, the number of perikymata between episode onsets, as well as duration of rLEH, was determined from scanning electron micrographs of casts of incisors and canines. We conclude that stress in the form of LEH commences as early as 2.5 years of age in all taxa and lasts for several years, and even longer in orangutans; the stress is not chronic but episodic; the stressor has a strong tendency to occur in pulses of two occurrences each; and large apes from both land masses exhibit rLEH with an average periodicity of 6 months (or multiples thereof; Sumatran orangutans seem to show only annual stress), but this needs further research. This is supported by evidence of spacing between rLEH as well as perikymata counts. Duration of stress in orangutans averages about 6 weeks. Finally, the semiannual stressor transcends geographic and temporal boundaries, and is attributed to regular moisture cycles associated with the intertropical convergence zone modified by the monsoon. While seasonal cycles can influence both disease and nutritional stress, it is likely the combination of

  1. Ozone affects growth and development of Pieris brassicae on the wild host plant Brassica nigra

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Khaling, Eliezer; Papazian, Stefano; Poelman, Erik H.; Holopainen, Jarmo K.; Albrectsen, Benedicte R.; Blande, James D.

    2015-01-01

    When plants are exposed to ozone they exhibit changes in both primary and secondary metabolism, which may affect their interactions with herbivorous insects. Here we investigated the performance and preferences of the specialist herbivore Pieris brassicae on the wild plant Brassica nigra under elevated ozone conditions. The direct and indirect effects of ozone on the plant-herbivore system were studied. In both cases ozone exposure had a negative effect on P. brassicae development. However, in dual-choice tests larvae preferentially consumed plant material previously fumigated with the highest concentration tested, showing a lack of correlation between larval preference and performance on ozone exposed plants. Metabolomic analysis of leaf material subjected to combinations of ozone and herbivore-feeding, and focussing on known defence metabolites, indicated that P. brassicae behaviour and performance were associated with ozone-induced alterations to glucosinolate and phenolic pools. - Highlights: • We examined the effects of ozone on Pieris brassicae performance and preference. • We studied ozone and herbivore induced changes in the metabolome of Brassica nigra. • The performance of P. brassicae did not correlate with preference of ozonated plants. • Ozone and herbivore-feeding stress changes the phytochemical pools of B. nigra. - Ozone indirectly reduces herbivore performance, which is associated with change in phytochemical pools, but does not correlate with host plant preference

  2. 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

  3. 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

  4. Global environmental controls of diversity in large herbivores

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Olff, Han; Ritchie, Mark E.; Prins, Herbert H.T.

    2002-01-01

    Large mammalian herbivores occupy half of the earth's land surface and are important both ecologically and economically, but their diversity is threatened by human activities. We investigated how the diversity of large herbivores changes across gradients of global precipitation and soil fertility.

  5. 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.

  6. 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

  7. Evaluating herbivore management outcomes and associated vegetation impacts

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rina C.C. Grant

    2011-05-01

    Conservation implications: In rangeland, optimising herbivore numbers to achieve the management objectives without causing unacceptable or irreversible change in the vegetation is challenging. This manuscript explores different avenues to evaluate herbivore impact and the outcomes of management approaches that may affect vegetation.

  8. Effects of large herbivores on grassland arthropod diversity

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Klink, R.; van der Plas, F.; van Noordwijk, C. G. E. (Toos); WallisDeVries, M. F.; Olff, H.

    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

  9. Competition between a Lawn-Forming Cynodon dactylon and a Tufted Grass Species Hyparrhenia hirta on a South-African Dystrophic Savanna

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Zwerts, J.A.; Prins, H.H.T.; Bomhoff, D.; Verhagen, I.; Swart, J.M.; Boer, de W.F.

    2015-01-01

    South African savanna grasslands are often characterised by indigestible tufted grass species whereas lawn grasses are far more desirable in terms of herbivore sustenance. We aimed to investigate the role of nutrients and/or the disturbance (grazing, trampling) by herbivores on the formation of

  10. 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

  11. 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

  12. 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

  13. 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

  14. Competition between domestic livestock and wild bharal Pseudois nayaur in the Indian Trans-Himalaya

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mishra, C.; Wieren, van S.E.; Ketner, P.; Heitkönig, I.M.A.; Prins, H.H.T.

    2004-01-01

    1. The issue of competition between livestock and wild herbivores has remained contentious. We studied the diets and population structures of the mountain ungulate bharal Pseudois nayaur and seven species of livestock to evaluate whether or not they compete for forage. The study was conducted in the

  15. 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

  16. 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.

  17. Foraging traces as an indicator to monitor wild boar impact on ground nesting birds.

    OpenAIRE

    Roda , Fabrice; Roda , Jean-Marc

    2016-01-01

    The successful management of large herbivores requires the monitoring of a set of indicators of ecological change describing animal performance, relative animal abundance, and ungulate impact on habitat. Wild boar populations increases have been spectacular in many countries including France. Wild boars can have a substantial environmental impact on many ecosystem components including birds, but indicators to monitor such impact are currently lacking. In this paper, we examined the usefulness...

  18. Impact of herbivores on nitrogen cycling : contrasting effects of small and large species

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bakker, ES; Olff, H; Boekhoff, M; Gleichman, JM; Berendse, F

    Herbivores are reported to slow down as well as enhance nutrient cycling in grasslands. These conflicting results may be explained by differences in herbivore type. In this study we focus on herbivore body size as a factor that causes differences in herbivore effects on N cycling. We used an

  19. Impact of herbivores on nitrogen cycling: contrasting effects of small and large species

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bakker, E.S.; Olff, H.; Boekhoff, M.; Gleichman, J.M.; Berendse, F.

    2004-01-01

    Herbivores are reported to slow down as well as enhance nutrient cycling in grasslands. These conflicting results may be explained by differences in herbivore type. In this study we focus on herbivore body size as a factor that causes differences in herbivore effects on N cycling. We used an

  20. 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.

  1. 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

  2. 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.

  3. 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

  4. Biomass and Abundance of Herbivorous Fishes on Coral Reefs off ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    effects of fishing intensity, reef geomorphology and benthic cover. Distance from the .... on herbivorous fish communities relevant to the proposed ... fragments, nearshore coastal fringing reefs ..... Over-fishing and coral bleaching pose the most ...

  5. 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.

  6. assimilation efficiency in two herbivores, oreochromis niloticus and ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Preferred Customer

    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.

  7. Plant Fitness Assessment for Wild Relatives of Insect Resistant Bt-Crops

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. K. Letourneau

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available When field tests of transgenic plants are precluded by practical containment concerns, manipulative experiments can detect potential consequences of crop-wild gene flow. Using topical sprays of bacterial Bacillus thuringiensis larvicide (Bt and larval additions, we measured fitness effects of reduced herbivory on Brassica rapa (wild mustard and Raphanus sativus (wild radish. These species represent different life histories among the potential recipients of Bt transgenes from Bt cole crops in the US and Asia, for which rare spontaneous crosses are expected under high exposure. Protected wild radish and wild mustard seedlings had approximately half the herbivore damage of exposed plants and 55% lower seedling mortality, resulting in 27% greater reproductive success, 14-day longer life-spans, and 118% more seeds, on average. Seed addition experiments in microcosms and in situ indicated that wild radish was more likely to spread than wild mustard in coastal grasslands.

  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. 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

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. A rule of thumb in mammalian herbivores?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Augner; Provenza; Villalba

    1998-08-01

    In two experiments on appetitive learning we conditioned lambs, Ovis aries, to particular concentrations of a flavour by mixing the flavour with an energy-rich food that complemented their energy-poor diet. The lambs were subsequently offered energy-rich food with five different concentrations of the flavour (the concentration to which they were conditioned, two higher concentrations, and two lower concentrations). At these tests, the lambs consistently preferred the weaker flavours. This finding stands in contrast to earlier results on generalization gradients. In a third experiment, similarly designed to the other two, we tested for effects of a strong flavour on the behaviour of lambs when they were offered a novel nutritious food. Half of the lambs were offered unadulterated wheat, and the others strongly flavoured wheat. We found that the flavour in itself was initially aversive. We propose that the lambs' avoidance of foods with strong flavours may be an expression of a rule of thumb of the type 'given a choice, avoid food with strong flavours'. Such a rule could be part of a risk-averse foraging strategy displayed by mammalian herbivores, and which could be of particular importance when they encounter unfamiliar foods. Copyright 1998 The Association for the Study of Animal Behaviour

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. Evaluation of wild herbivore faeces from South Africa as a potential source of hydrolytically active microorganisms

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Ndlela, LL

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available once hydrolysis (FDA) or reduction (TTC) occurred. The fluorescein diacetate assay operates on the princi- ple of hydrolytic release of two acetate groups via ester bond cleavage by free and membrane-bound hydrolytic enzymes, yielding the yellow... hydrolytic enzymes such as amylases can cleave its ester bonds as well (Lundgren 1981; Green et  al. 2006). The FDA hydrolysis assay has also been utilised and recommended as an efficient method to estimate active cells within environmental samples...

  16. Interspecific interference competition at the resource patch scale: do large herbivores spatially avoid elephants while accessing water?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferry, Nicolas; Dray, Stéphane; Fritz, Hervé; Valeix, Marion

    2016-11-01

    Animals may anticipate and try to avoid, at some costs, physical encounters with other competitors. This may ultimately impact their foraging distribution and intake rates. Such cryptic interference competition is difficult to measure in the field, and extremely little is known at the interspecific level. We tested the hypothesis that smaller species avoid larger ones because of potential costs of interference competition and hence expected them to segregate from larger competitors at the scale of a resource patch. We assessed fine-scale spatial segregation patterns between three African herbivore species (zebra Equus quagga, kudu Tragelaphus strepsiceros and giraffe Giraffa camelopardalis) and a megaherbivore, the African elephant Loxodonta africana, at the scale of water resource patches in the semi-arid ecosystem of Hwange National Park, Zimbabwe. Nine waterholes were monitored every two weeks during the dry season of a drought year, and observational scans of the spatial distribution of all herbivores were performed every 15 min. We developed a methodological approach to analyse such fine-scale spatial data. Elephants increasingly used waterholes as the dry season progressed, as did the probability of co-occurrence and agonistic interaction with elephants for the three study species. All three species segregated from elephants at the beginning of the dry season, suggesting a spatial avoidance of elephants and the existence of costs of being close to them. However, contrarily to our expectations, herbivores did not segregate from elephants the rest of the dry season but tended to increasingly aggregate with elephants as the dry season progressed. We discuss these surprising results and the existence of a trade-off between avoidance of interspecific interference competition and other potential factors such as access to quality water, which may have relative associated costs that change with the time of the year. © 2016 The Authors. Journal of Animal Ecology

  17. Large herbivores in space: Resource partitioning among savanna grazers in a heterogeneous environment

    OpenAIRE

    Cromsigt, Joris Petrus Gerardus Marinus

    2006-01-01

    Large mammalian grazers are among the most conspicuous species groups of the animal kingdom. The richest assemblages of large grazers can be found on the African continent. Diverse large grazer assemblages and the grazing systems they live in have been ascribed great socio-economic as well as ecological value. The impact of wild large grazers on humans has been enormous throughout the evolutionary history of mankind. Domesticated grazers have taken over most of the socio-economic role of thei...

  18. 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...

  19. 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...

  20. 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...

  1. 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

  2. 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.

  3. 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

  4. Fish, Benthic and Urchin Survey Data from Kahekili Herbivore Fisheries Management Area (HFMA), Maui since 2008

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — In 2009, the state of Hawaii established the Kahekili Herbivore Fisheries Management Area (KHFMA) in West Maui. Fishing for herbivores (parrotfishes, surgeonfishes,...

  5. 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

  6. 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

  7. 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.

  8. 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

  9. 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.

  10. Large herbivores as a driving force of woodland-grassland cycles

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cornelissen, Perry

    2017-01-01

    This thesis examines the mutual interactions between the population dynamics of large herbivores and wood-pasture cycles in eutrophic wetlands. Therefore, habitat use and population dynamics of large herbivores, the effects of large herbivores on vegetation development, and the mutual

  11. 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

  12. Herbivore-induced resistance against microbial pathogens in Arabidopsis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vos, de M.; Zaanen, van W.; Koornneef, A.; Korzelius, J.P.; Dicke, M.; Loon, van L.C.; Pieterse, C.M.J.

    2006-01-01

    Caterpillars of the herbivore Pieris rapae stimulate the production of jasmonic acid (JA) and ethylene (ET) in Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) and trigger a defense response that affects insect performance on systemic tissues. To investigate the spectrum of effectiveness of P. rapae-induced

  13. Herbivore-induced resistance against microbial pathogens in Arabidopsis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vos, M. de; Zaanen, W. van; Koornneef, A.; Korzelius, J.P.; Dicke, M.; Loon, L.C. van; Pieterse, C.M.J.

    2006-01-01

    Caterpillars of the herbivore Pieris rapae stimulate the production of jasmonic acid (JA) and ethylene (ET) in Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) and trigger a defense response that affects insect performance on systemic tissues. To investigate the sspectrum of effectiveness of P. rapae-induced

  14. 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

  15. Experimental evidence for herbivore limitation of the treeline.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Speed, James D M; Austrheim, Gunnar; Hester, Alison J; Mysterud, Atle

    2010-11-01

    The treeline ecotone divides forest from open alpine or arctic vegetation states. Treelines are generally perceived to be temperature limited. The role of herbivores in limiting the treeline is more controversial, as experimental evidence from relevant large scales is lacking. Here we quantify the impact of different experimentally controlled herbivore densities on the recruitment and survival of birch Betula pubescens tortuosa along an altitudinal gradient in the mountains of southern Norway. After eight years of summer grazing in large-scale enclosures at densities of 0, 25, and 80 sheep/km2, birch recruited within the whole altitudinal range of ungrazed enclosures, but recruitment was rarer in enclosures with low-density sheep and was largely limited to within the treeline in enclosures with high-density sheep. In contrast, the distribution of saplings (birch older than the experiment) did not differ between grazing treatments, suggesting that grazing sheep primarily limit the establishment of new tree recruits rather than decrease the survival of existing individuals. This study provides direct experimental evidence that herbivores can limit the treeline below its potential at the landscape scale and even at low herbivore densities in this climatic zone. Land use changes should thus be considered in addition to climatic changes as potential drivers of ecotone shifts.

  16. 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.

  17. Immune defence strategies of generalist and specialist insect herbivores

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Barthel, A.; Kopka, I.; Vogel, H.; Zipfel, P.; Heckel, D.G.; Groot, A.T.

    2014-01-01

    Ecological immunology examines the adaptive responses of animals to pathogens in relation to other environmental factors and explores the consequences of trade-offs between investment in immune function and other life-history traits. Among species of herbivorous insects, diet breadth may vary

  18. 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 ...

  19. 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 ...

  20. Ecology of Arabidopsis thaliana : local adaptation and interaction with herbivores

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mosleh Arany, A.

    2006-01-01

    As first step the impact of herbivory and abiotic factors on population dynamics of Arabidopsis thaliana were studied. Ceutorhynchus atomus and C. contractus were identified as the major insect herbivores on A. thaliana population, reducing seed production by more than 40%. Mortality from February

  1. Resource partitioning between large herbivores in Hustai National Park, Mongolia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sietses, D.J.; Faupin, G.; Boer, de W.F.; Jong, de C.B.; Henkens, R.J.H.G.; Usukhjargal, D.; Batbaatar, T.

    2009-01-01

    Re-introduced Przewalski horses in Hustai National Park, Mongolia could suffer from food competition with other herbivore species through food resource depletion. Diet composition of the Przewalski horse (Equus ferus przewalskii), red deer (Cervus elaphus) and four livestock species (sheep, goat,

  2. 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.

  3. Wildlife in the Matrix: Spatio-Temporal Patterns of Herbivore Occurrence in Karnataka, India

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karanth, Krithi K.

    2016-01-01

    Wildlife reserves are becoming increasingly isolated from the surrounding human-dominated landscapes particularly in Asia. It is imperative to understand how species are distributed spatially and temporally in and outside reserves, and what factors influence their occurrence. This study surveyed 7500 km2 landscape surrounding five reserves in the Western Ghats to examine patterns of occurrence of five herbivores: elephant, gaur, sambar, chital, and pig. Species distributions are modeled spatio-temporally using an occupancy approach. Trained field teams conducted 3860 interview-based occupancy surveys in a 10-km buffer surrounding these five reserves in 2012. I found gaur and wild pig to be the least and most wide-ranging species, respectively. Elephant and chital exhibit seasonal differences in spatial distribution unlike the other three species. As predicted, distance to reserve, the reserve itself, and forest cover were associated with higher occupancy of all species, and higher densities of people negatively influenced occurrence of all species. Park management, species protection, and conflict mitigation efforts in this landscape need to incorporate temporal and spatial understanding of species distributions. All species are known crop raiders and conflict prone locations with resources (such as water and forage) have to be monitored and managed carefully. Wildlife reserves and adjacent areas are critical for long-term persistence and habitat use for all five herbivores and must be monitored to ensure wildlife can move freely. Such a large-scale approach to map and monitor species distributions can be adapted to other landscapes to identify and monitor critical habitats shared by people and wildlife.

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  6. Responses of Herbivorous Fishes and Benthos to 6 Years of Protection at the Kahekili Herbivore Fisheries Management Area, Maui.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ivor D Williams

    Full Text Available In response to concerns about declining coral cover and recurring macroalgal blooms, in 2009 the State of Hawaii established the Kahekili Herbivore Fisheries Management Area (KHFMA. Within the KHFMA, herbivorous fishes and sea urchins are protected, but other fishing is allowed. As part of a multi-agency monitoring effort, we conducted surveys at KHFMA and comparison sites around Maui starting 19 months before closure, and over the six years since implementation of herbivore protection. Mean parrotfish and surgeonfish biomass both increased within the KHFMA (by 139% [95%QR (quantile range: 98-181%] and 28% [95%QR: 3-52%] respectively. Most of those gains were of small-to-medium sized species, whereas large-bodied species have not recovered, likely due to low levels of poaching on what are preferred fishery targets in Hawaii. Nevertheless, coincident with greater biomass of herbivores within the KHFMA, cover of crustose coralline algae (CCA has increased from ~2% before closure to ~ 15% in 2015, and macroalgal cover has remained low throughout the monitoring period. Strong evidence that changes in the KHFMA were a consequence of herbivore management are that (i there were no changes in biomass of unprotected fish families within the KHFMA; and that (ii there were no similar changes in parrotfish or CCA at comparison sites around Maui. It is not yet clear how effective herbivore protection might eventually be for the KHFMA's ultimate goal of coral recovery. Coral cover declined over the first few years of surveys-from 39.6% (SE 1.4% in 2008, to 32.9% (SE 0.8% in 2012, with almost all of that loss occurring by 2010 (1 year after closure, i.e. before meaningful herbivore recovery had occurred. Coral cover subsequently stabilized and may have slightly increased from 2012 through early 2015. However, a region-wide bleaching event in 2015 had already led to some coral mortality by the time surveys were conducted in late 2015, at which time cover had

  7. SOCIAL BEHAVIOUR OF AFRICAN EQUIDAE

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The social organisation of the two other African equids, Grevy's zebra and the wild ass, is completely different from the above. In these species there are no permanent bonds belween any two or more adult animals, which are found solitary or in a variety of different associalions: stallion groups, mare groups, groups of mares ...

  8. Soil Resources Area Affects Herbivore Health

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chad M. Dacus

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available Soil productivity effects nutritive quality of food plants, growth of humans and animals, and reproductive health of domestic animals. Game-range surveys sometimes poorly explained variations in wildlife populations, but classification of survey data by major soil types improved effectiveness. Our study evaluates possible health effects of lower condition and reproductive rates for wild populations of Odocoileus virginianus Zimmerman (white-tailed deer in some physiographic regions of Mississippi. We analyzed condition and reproductive data for 2400 female deer from the Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries, and Parks herd health evaluations from 1991–1998. We evaluated age, body mass (Mass, kidney mass, kidney fat mass, number of corpora lutea (CL and fetuses, as well as fetal ages. Region affected kidney fat index (KFI, which is a body condition index, and numbers of fetuses of adults (P ≤ 0.001. Region affected numbers of CL of adults (P ≤ 0.002. Mass and conception date (CD were affected (P ≤ 0.001 by region which interacted significantly with age for Mass (P ≤ 0.001 and CD (P < 0.04. Soil region appears to be a major factor influencing physical characteristics of female deer.

  9. 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.

  10. 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

  11. Mesoherbivores affect grasshopper communities in a megaherbivore-dominated South African savannah

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van der Plas, Fons; Olff, Han

    African savannahs are among the few places on earth where diverse communities of mega- and meso-sized ungulate grazers dominate ecosystem functioning. Less conspicuous, but even more diverse, are the communities of herbivorous insects such as grasshoppers, which share the same food. Various studies

  12. Diet selection of African elephant over time shows changing optimization currency

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pretorius, Y.; Stigter, J.D.; Boer, de W.F.; Wieren, van S.E.; Jong, de C.B.; Knegt, de H.J.; Grant, R.C.; Heitkonig, I.M.A.; Knox, N.; Kohi, E.; Mwakiwa, E.; Peel, M.J.S.; Skidmore, A.K.; Slotow, R.; Waal, van der C.; Langevelde, van F.; Prins, H.H.T.

    2012-01-01

    Multiple factors determine diet selection of herbivores. However, in many diet studies selection of single nutrients is studied or optimization models are developed using only one currency. In this paper, we use linear programming to explain diet selection by African elephant based on plant

  13. Concentration of 137Cs and 40K in meat of omnivore and herbivore game species in mountain forest ecosystems of Gorski Kotar, Croatia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nikica Sprem; Ivan Babic; Domagoj Barisic; Delko Barisic

    2013-01-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate 137 Cs and 40 K load in large mammal game species in the mountain forest region of Gorski Kotar in Croatia approximately a quarter of century after the Chernobyl accident. 137 Cs and 40 K activity were determined by the gamma-spectrometric method in 49 meat samples of five large game species: brown bear (Ursus arctos), wild boar (Sus scrofa), roe deer (Capreolus capreolus), red deer (Cervus elaphus), and chamois (Rupicapra rupicapra). The results indicated that herbivore game species (roe deer, red deer and chamois) show significantly lower 137 Cs concentrations than omnivore species (brown bear, wild boar), thereby confirming the hypothesis that different dietary strategy impact caesium concentrations in meat. The measured caesium load in brown bear meat was in the range of two orders of magnitude, while caesium load in wild boar meat was found in the range of one order of magnitude. The estimated effective equivalent dose showed that uptake of the highest caesium doses would be from consumption of omnivore species meat, while much lower doses could be taken in with the consumption of meat from herbivore species. (author)

  14. Another one bites the dust: faecal silica levels in large herbivores correlate with high-crowned teeth

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hummel, Jürgen; Findeisen, Eva; Südekum, Karl-Heinz; Ruf, Irina; Kaiser, Thomas M.; Bucher, Martin; Clauss, Marcus; Codron, Daryl

    2011-01-01

    The circumstances of the evolution of hypsodonty (= high-crowned teeth) are a bone of contention. Hypsodonty is usually linked to diet abrasiveness, either from siliceous phytoliths (monocotyledons) or from grit (dusty environments). However, any empirical quantitative approach testing the relation of ingested silica and hypsodonty is lacking. In this study, faecal silica content was quantified as acid detergent insoluble ash and used as proxy for silica ingested by large African herbivores of different digestive types, feeding strategies and hypsodonty levels. Separate sample sets were used for the dry (n = 15 species) and wet (n = 13 species) season. Average faecal silica contents were 17–46 g kg−1 dry matter (DM) for browsing and 52–163 g kg−1 DM for grazing herbivores. No difference was detected between the wet (97.5 ± 14.4 g kg−1 DM) and dry season (93.5 ± 13.7 g kg−1 DM) faecal silica. In a phylogenetically controlled analysis, a strong positive correlation (dry season r = 0.80, p < 0.0005; wet season r = 0.74, p < 0.005) was found between hypsodonty index and faecal silica levels. While surprisingly our results do not indicate major seasonal changes in silica ingested, the correlation of faecal silica and hypsodonty supports a scenario of a dominant role of abrasive silica in the evolution of high-crowned teeth. PMID:21068036

  15. 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.

  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. Distribution, behavior, and condition of herbivorous fishes on coral reefs track algal resources.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tootell, Jesse S; Steele, Mark A

    2016-05-01

    Herbivore distribution can impact community structure and ecosystem function. On coral reefs, herbivores are thought to play an important role in promoting coral dominance, but how they are distributed relative to algae is not well known. Here, we evaluated whether the distribution, behavior, and condition of herbivorous fishes correlated with algal resource availability at six sites in the back reef environment of Moorea, French Polynesia. Specifically, we tested the hypotheses that increased algal turf availability would coincide with (1) increased biomass, (2) altered foraging behavior, and (3) increased energy reserves of herbivorous fishes. Fish biomass and algal cover were visually estimated along underwater transects; behavior of herbivorous fishes was quantified by observations of focal individuals; fish were collected to assess their condition; and algal turf production rates were measured on standardized tiles. The best predictor of herbivorous fish biomass was algal turf production, with fish biomass increasing with algal production. Biomass of herbivorous fishes was also negatively related to sea urchin density, suggesting competition for limited resources. Regression models including both algal turf production and urchin density explained 94 % of the variation in herbivorous fish biomass among sites spread over ~20 km. Behavioral observations of the parrotfish Chlorurus sordidus revealed that foraging area increased as algal turf cover decreased. Additionally, energy reserves increased with algal turf production, but declined with herbivorous fish density, implying that algal turf is a limited resource for this species. Our findings support the hypothesis that herbivorous fishes can spatially track algal resources on coral reefs.

  18. 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.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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...

  3. Lateral diffusion of nutrients by mammalian herbivores in terrestrial ecosystems.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adam Wolf

    Full Text Available Animals translocate nutrients by consuming nutrients at one point and excreting them or dying at another location. Such lateral fluxes may be an important mechanism of nutrient supply in many ecosystems, but lack quantification and a systematic theoretical framework for their evaluation. This paper presents a mathematical framework for quantifying such fluxes in the context of mammalian herbivores. We develop an expression for lateral diffusion of a nutrient, where the diffusivity is a biologically determined parameter depending on the characteristics of mammals occupying the domain, including size-dependent phenomena such as day range, metabolic demand, food passage time, and population size. Three findings stand out: (a Scaling law-derived estimates of diffusion parameters are comparable to estimates calculated from estimates of each coefficient gathered from primary literature. (b The diffusion term due to transport of nutrients in dung is orders of magnitude large than the coefficient representing nutrients in bodymass. (c The scaling coefficients show that large herbivores make a disproportionate contribution to lateral nutrient transfer. We apply the diffusion equation to a case study of Kruger National Park to estimate the conditions under which mammal-driven nutrient transport is comparable in magnitude to other (abiotic nutrient fluxes (inputs and losses. Finally, a global analysis of mammalian herbivore transport is presented, using a comprehensive database of contemporary animal distributions. We show that continents vary greatly in terms of the importance of animal-driven nutrient fluxes, and also that perturbations to nutrient cycles are potentially quite large if threatened large herbivores are driven to extinction.

  4. 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.

  5. Distribution of herbivorous fish is frozen by low temperature

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Vejříková, Ivana; Vejřík, Lukáš; Syväranta, J.; Kiljunen, M.; Čech, Martin; Blabolil, Petr; Vašek, Mojmír; Sajdlová, Zuzana; Chung, S.H.T.; Šmejkal, Marek; Frouzová, Jaroslava; Peterka, Jiří

    2016-01-01

    Roč. 6, December (2016), č. článku 39600. ISSN 2045-2322 R&D Projects: GA MŠk(CZ) EE2.3.20.0204; GA MŠk(CZ) 7F14316 Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : herbivorous ectotherms * latitudinal gradient * macrophytes * Scardinius erythrophthalmus * global warming Subject RIV: EG - Zoology Impact factor: 4.259, year: 2016

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. Survival of a wild ring-tailed lemur ( Lemur catta ) with abdominal ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Survival of a wild ring-tailed lemur ( Lemur catta ) with abdominal trauma in an anthropogenically ... PROMOTING ACCESS TO AFRICAN RESEARCH ... for 13 months until her remains, which showed evidence of dog predation, were found.

  9. Herbivorous ecomorphology and specialization patterns in theropod dinosaur evolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zanno, Lindsay E; Makovicky, Peter J

    2011-01-04

    Interpreting key ecological parameters, such as diet, of extinct organisms without the benefit of direct observation or explicit fossil evidence poses a formidable challenge for paleobiological studies. To date, dietary categorizations of extinct taxa are largely generated by means of modern analogs; however, for many species the method is subject to considerable ambiguity. Here we present a refined approach for assessing trophic habits in fossil taxa and apply the method to coelurosaurian dinosaurs--a clade for which diet is particularly controversial. Our findings detect 21 morphological features that exhibit statistically significant correlations with extrinsic fossil evidence of coelurosaurian herbivory, such as stomach contents and a gastric mill. These traits represent quantitative, extrinsically founded proxies for identifying herbivorous ecomorphology in fossils and are robust despite uncertainty in phylogenetic relationships among major coelurosaurian subclades. The distribution of these features suggests that herbivory was widespread among coelurosaurians, with six major subclades displaying morphological evidence of the diet, and that contrary to previous thought, hypercarnivory was relatively rare and potentially secondarily derived. Given the potential for repeated, independent evolution of herbivory in Coelurosauria, we also test for repetitive patterns in the appearance of herbivorous traits within sublineages using rank concordance analysis. We find evidence for a common succession of increasing specialization to herbivory in the subclades Ornithomimosauria and Oviraptorosauria, perhaps underlain by intrinsic functional and/or developmental constraints, as well as evidence indicating that the early evolution of a beak in coelurosaurians correlates with an herbivorous diet.

  10. 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.

  11. 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

  12. African Anthropologist

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    PROMOTING ACCESS TO AFRICAN RESEARCH ... It provides a forum for African and Africanist anthropologists to publish research reports, articles, book ... A Qualitative Exploration · EMAIL FREE FULL TEXT EMAIL FREE FULL TEXT

  13. Wild reindeer of Yakutia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V.M. Safronov

    1996-01-01

    Full Text Available Three major herds of wild reindeer (Rangifer tarandus tarandus L., totaling over 200,000 animals, occur in the tundra and taiga of northern Yakutia. These herds have been expanding since the late 1950s and now occupy most of their historic range. In addition, several thousand wild reindeer occupy the New Siberian Islands and adjacent coastal mainland tundra, and there are about 60,000 largely sedentary forest reindeer in mountainous areas of the southern two-thirds of the province. Wild reindeer are commercially hunted throughout the mainland, and the production of wild meat is an important part of the economy of the province and of individual reindeer enterprises which produce both wild and domestic meat.

  14. Comparative metabolite profiling of Solanum tuberosum against six wild Solanum species with Colorado potato beetle resistance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tai, Helen H; Worrall, Kraig; Pelletier, Yvan; De Koeyer, David; Calhoun, Larry A

    2014-09-10

    The Colorado potato beetle Leptinotarsa decemlineata (Say) (CPB) is a coleopteran herbivore that feeds on the foliage on Solanum species, in particular, potato. Six resistant wild Solanum species were identified, and two of these species had low levels of glycoalkaloids. Comparative analysis of the untargeted metabolite profiles of the foliage using UPLC-qTOF-MS was done to find metabolites shared between the wild species but not with Solanum tuberosum (L.) to identify resistance-related metabolites. It was found that only S. tuberosum produced the triose glycoalkaloids solanine and chaconine. Instead, the six wild species produced glycoalkaloids that shared in common tetrose sugar side chains. Additionally, there were non-glycoalkaloid metabolites associated with resistance including hydroxycoumarin and a phenylpropanoid, which were produced in all wild species but not in S. tuberosum.

  15. 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...

  16. 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.

  17. Herbivore grazing—or trampling? Trampling effects by a large ungulate in cold high- latitude ecosystems

    OpenAIRE

    Heggenes, Jan; Odland, Arvid; Chevalier, Tomas; Ahlberg, Jörgen; Berg, Amanda; Larsson, Håkan; Bjerketvedt, Dag Kjartan

    2017-01-01

    Mammalian herbivores have important top-down effects on ecological processes and landscapes by generating vegetation changes through grazing and trampling. For free-ranging herbivores on large landscapes, trampling is an important ecological factor. However, whereas grazing is widely studied, low-intensity trampling is rarely studied and quantified. The cold-adapted northern tundra reindeer (Rangifer tarandus) is a wide-ranging keystone herbivore in large open alpine and Arctic ecosystems. Re...

  18. Effect of nitrogen fertilization application and maturity of wild ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    N) fertilizer application (0, 125 and 250kg N/ha) and stage of maturity on chemical composition and degradation characteristics of wild sunflower forage meal in West African Dwarf sheep. Nitrogen (0,125 and 250 kg N/ha) as NPK was applied ...

  19. Monitoring digestibility of forages for herbivores: a new application for an old approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vansomeren, Lindsey L.; Barboza, Perry S.; Thompson, Daniel P.; Gustine, David D.

    2015-01-01

    Ruminant populations are often limited by how well individuals are able to acquire nutrients for growth, maintenance, and reproduction. Nutrient supply to the animal is dictated by the concentration of nutrients in feeds and the efficiency of digesting those nutrients (i.e., digestibility). Many different methods have been used to measure digestibility of forages for wild herbivores, all of which rely on collecting rumen fluid from animals or incubation within animals. Animal-based methods can provide useful estimates, but the approach is limited by the expense of fistulated animals, wide variation in digestibility among animals, and contamination from endogenous and microbial sources that impairs the estimation of nutrient digestibility. We tested an in vitro method using a two-stage procedure using purified enzymes. The first stage, a 6 h acid–pepsin treatment, was followed by a combined 72 h amylase–cellulase or amylase–Viscozyme treatment. We then validated our estimates using in sacco and in vivo methods to digest samples of the same forages. In vitro estimates of dry matter (DM) digestibility were correlated with estimates of in sacco and in vivo DM digestibility (both P content declined below 0.03–0.06 g/g of DM. The in vitro method is well suited to monitoring forage quality over multiple years because it is reproducible, can be used with minimal investment by other laboratories without animal facilities, and can measure digestibility of individual nutrients such as N.

  20. 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.

  1. African Journals Online: African Studies

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Items 51 - 56 of 56 ... Research Review of the Institute of African Studies. Please note: As of 2013 the Research Review of the Institute of African Studies is now publishing under the title Contemporary Journal of African Studies. You can view the CJAS pages on AJOL here: http://www.ajol.info/index.php/contjas/index.

  2. The 9-lipoxygenase Osr9-LOX1 interacts with the 13-lipoxygenase-mediated pathway to regulate resistance to chewing and piercing-sucking herbivores in rice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Guoxin; Ren, Nan; Qi, Jingfeng; Lu, Jing; Xiang, Caiyu; Ju, Hongping; Cheng, Jiaan; Lou, Yonggen

    2014-09-01

    Oxylipins produced by the 13-lipoxygenase (LOX) have been reported to play an important role in plant defense responses to herbivores. Yet, the role of oxylipins produced by the 9-LOX pathway in this process remains largely unknown. Here we cloned a gene encoding a chloroplast-localized 9-LOX, Osr9-LOX1, from rice. Transcriptional analysis revealed that herbivore infestation, mechanical wounding and jasmonic acid (JA) treatment either repressed or did not enhance the level of Osr9-LOX1 transcripts at early stages but did at later stages, whereas salicylic acid (SA) treatment quickly increased the transcript level of Osr9-LOX1. Antisense expression of Osr9-lox1 (as-r9lox1) decreased the amount of wound-induced (Z)-3-hexenal but increased levels of striped stem borer (SSB)-induced linolenic acid, JA, SA and trypsin protease inhibitors. These changes were associated with increased resistance in rice to the larvae of the SSB Chilo suppressalis. In contrast, although no significant differences were observed in the duration of the nymph stage or the number of eggs laid by female adults between the brown planthopper (BPH) Nilaparvata lugens that fed on as-r9lox1 lines and BPH that fed on wild-type (WT) rice plants, the survival rate of BPH nymphs that fed on as-r9lox1 lines was higher than that of nymphs that fed on WT plants, possibly because of a higher JA level. The results demonstrate that Osr9-LOX1 plays an important role in regulating an herbivore-induced JA burst and cross-talk between JA and SA, and in controlling resistance in rice to chewing and phloem-feeding herbivores. © 2014 Scandinavian Plant Physiology Society.

  3. Wild and Scenic Rivers

    Data.gov (United States)

    Earth Data Analysis Center, University of New Mexico — This map layer portrays the linear federally-owned land features (i.e., national parkways, wild and scenic rivers, etc.) of the United States, Puerto Rico, and the...

  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. 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

  6. 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

  7. Oxalosis in wild desert tortoises, Gopherus agassizii

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jacobson, Elliott R.; Berry, Kristin H.; Stacy, Brian; Huzella, Louis M.; Kalasinsky, Victor F.; Fleetwood, Michelle L.; Mense, Mark G.

    2009-01-01

    We necropsied a moribund, wild adult male desert tortoise (Gopherus agassizii) with clinical signs of respiratory disease and elevated plasma biochemical analytes indicative of renal disease (blood urea nitrogen [415 mg/dl], uric acid [11.8 mg/dl], sodium >180 mmol/l] and chloride [139 mmol/l]). Moderate numbers of birefringent oxalate crystals, based on infrared and electron microscopy, were present within renal tubules; small numbers were seen in colloid within thyroid follicles. A retrospective analysis of 66 additional cases of wild desert tortoises was conducted to determine whether similar crystals were present in thyroid and kidney. The tortoises, from the Mojave and Sonoran deserts, were necropsied between 1992 and 2003 and included juveniles and adults. Tortoises were classified as healthy (those that died due to trauma and where no disease was identified after necropsy and evaluation by standard laboratory tests used for other tortoises) or not healthy (having one or more diseases or lesions). For all 67 necropsied tortoises, small numbers of crystals of similar appearance were present in thyroid glands from 44 of 54 cases (81%) and in kidneys from three of 65 cases (5%). Presence of oxalates did not differ significantly between healthy and unhealthy tortoises, between age classes, or between desert region, and their presence was considered an incidental finding. Small numbers of oxalate crystals seen within the kidney of two additional tortoises also were considered an incidental finding. Although the source of the calcium oxalate could not be determined, desert tortoises are herbivores, and a plant origin seems most likely. Studies are needed to evaluate the oxalate content of plants consumed by desert tortoises, and particularly those in the area where the tortoise in renal failure was found.

  8. Coral Reef Ecosystem Data from the 2010-2011 Kahekili Herbivore Fisheries Management Area, West Maui, Herbivore Enhancement as a Tool for Reef Restoration Project (NODC Accession 0082869)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This research targets the Hawaii Coral Reef Initiative (HCRI) Priority Area A: Kahekili, Maui: Herbivore Fisheries Management Area (KHFMA). The project goal was to...

  9. The distribution of large herbivore hotspots in relation to environmental and anthropogenic correlates in the Mara region of Kenya

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bhola, Nina; Ogutu, Joseph O.; Said, Mohamed Y.; Piepho, Hans-Peter; Olff, Han; Fryxell, John

    2012-01-01

    1. The distributions of large herbivores in protected areas and their surroundings are becoming increasingly restricted by changing land use, with adverse consequences for wildlife populations. 2. We analyse changes in distributions of herbivore hotspots to understand their environmental and

  10. 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.

  11. 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

  12. 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

  13. 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

  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, 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

  15. 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

  16. 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...

  17. 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.

  18. 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

  19. Native herbivore exerts contrasting effects on fire regime and vegetation structure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jose L. Hierro; Kenneth L. Clark; Lyn C. Branch; Diego Villarreal

    2011-01-01

    Although native herbivores can alter fire regimes by consuming herbaceous vegetation that serves as fine fuel and, less commonly, accumulating fuel as nest material and other structures, simultaneous considerations of contrasting effects of herbivores on fire have scarcely been addressed. We proposed that a colonial rodent, vizcacha (Lagostomus maximus...

  20. 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

  1. 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.

  2. Herbivore species and density affect vegetation-structure patchiness in salt marshes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nolte, Stefanie; Esselink, Peter; Smit, Christian; Bakker, Jan P.

    2014-01-01

    The importance of spatial patterns for ecosystem functioning and biodiversity has long been recognized in ecology. Grazing by herbivores is an important mechanism leading to spatial patterns in the vegetation structure. How different herbivore species and their densities affect vegetation-structure

  3. 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

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. Aboveground vertebrate and invertebrate herbivore impacts on net N mineralization in subalpine grasslands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anita C. Risch; Martin Schutz; Martijn L. Vandegehuchte; Wim H. van der Putten; Henk Duyts; Ursina Raschein; Dariusz J. Gwiazdowicz; Matt D. Busse; Deborah S. Page-Dumroese; Stephan Zimmerman

    2015-01-01

    Aboveground herbivores have strong effects on grassland nitrogen (N) cycling. They can accelerate or slow down soil net N mineralization depending on ecosystem productivity and grazing intensity. Yet, most studies only consider either ungulates or invertebrate herbivores, but not the combined effect of several functionally different vertebrate and invertebrate...

  7. Distributional congruence of mammalian herbivores in the Trans-Himalayan Mountains

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Namgail, T.; Wieren, van S.E.; Prins, H.H.T.

    2013-01-01

    Large-scale distribution and diversity patterns of mammalian herbivores, especially less charismatic species in alpine environments remain little understood. We studied distributional congruence of mammalian herbivores in the Trans-Himalayan region of Ladakh to see if the distributions of less

  8. 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

  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. Copper Contamination Impairs Herbivore Initiation of Seaweed Inducible Defenses and Decreases Their Effectiveness.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexandria M Warneke

    Full Text Available Seaweed-herbivore interactions are often mediated by environmental conditions, yet the roles of emerging anthropogenic stressors on these interactions are poorly understood. For example, chemical contaminants have unknown consequences on seaweed inducible resistance and herbivore response to these defenses despite known deleterious effects of contaminants on animal inducible defenses. Here, we investigated the effect of copper contamination on the interactions between a snail herbivore and a brown seaweed that displays inducible resistance to grazing. We examined seaweed inducible resistance and its effectiveness for organisms exposed to copper at two time points, either during induction or after herbivores had already induced seaweed defenses. Under ambient conditions, non-grazed tissues were more palatable than grazed tissues. However, copper additions negated the preference for non-grazed tissues regardless of the timing of copper exposure, suggesting that copper decreased both how herbivores initiated these inducible defenses and their subsequent effectiveness. Copper decreased stimulation of defenses, at least in part, by suppressing snail grazing pressure-the cue that turns inducible defenses on. Copper decreased effectiveness of defenses by preventing snails from preferentially consuming non-grazed seaweed. Thus, contaminants can potentially stress communities by changing seaweed-herbivore interactions mediated via inducible defenses. Given the ubiquity of seaweed inducible resistance and their potential influence on herbivores, we hypothesize that copper contamination may change the impact of these resistant traits on herbivores.

  11. Landscape-scale analyses suggest both nutrient and antipredator advantages to Serengeti herbivore hotspots

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Anderson, T. Michael; Hopcraft, J. Grant C.; Eby, Stephanie; Ritchie, Mark; Grace, James B.; Olff, Han; Young, T.P.

    Mechanistic explanations of herbivore spatial distribution have focused largely on either resource-related (bottom-up) or predation-related (top-down) factors. We studied direct and indirect influences on the spatial distributions of Serengeti herbivore hotspots, defined as temporally stable areas

  12. 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...

  13. 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 ...

  14. 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

  15. Adaptive divergence in resistance to herbivores in Datura stramonium

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guillermo Castillo

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Defensive traits exhibited by plants vary widely across populations. Heritable phenotypic differentiation is likely to be produced by genetic drift and spatially restricted gene flow between populations. However, spatially variable selection exerted by herbivores may also give rise to differences among populations. To explore to what extent these factors promote the among-population differentiation of plant resistance of 13 populations of Datura stramonium, we compared the degree of phenotypic differentiation (PST of leaf resistance traits (trichome density, atropine and scopolamine concentration against neutral genetic differentiation (FST at microsatellite loci. Results showed that phenotypic differentiation in defensive traits among-population is not consistent with divergence promoted by genetic drift and restricted gene flow alone. Phenotypic differentiation in scopolamine concentration was significantly higher than FST across the range of trait heritability values. In contrast, genetic differentiation in trichome density was different from FST only when heritability was very low. On the other hand, differentiation in atropine concentration differed from the neutral expectation when heritability was less than or equal to 0.3. In addition, we did not find a significant correlation between pair-wise neutral genetic distances and distances of phenotypic resistance traits. Our findings reinforce previous evidence that divergent natural selection exerted by herbivores has promoted the among-population phenotypic differentiation of defensive traits in D. stramonium.

  16. 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

  17. Competition between a Lawn-Forming Cynodon dactylon and a Tufted Grass Species Hyparrhenia hirta on a South-African Dystrophic Savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zwerts, J A; Prins, H H T; Bomhoff, D; Verhagen, I; Swart, J M; de Boer, W F

    2015-01-01

    South African savanna grasslands are often characterised by indigestible tufted grass species whereas lawn grasses are far more desirable in terms of herbivore sustenance. We aimed to investigate the role of nutrients and/or the disturbance (grazing, trampling) by herbivores on the formation of grazing lawns. We conducted a series of common garden experiments to test the effect of nutrients on interspecific competition between a typical lawn-forming grass species (Cynodon dactylon) and a species that is frequently found outside grazing lawns (Hyparrhenia hirta), and tested for the effect of herbivore disturbance in the form of trampling and clipping. We also performed a vegetation and herbivore survey to apply experimentally derived insights to field observations. Our results showed that interspecific competition was not affected by soil nutrient concentrations. C. dactylon did show much more resilience to disturbance than H. hirta, presumably due to the regenerative capacity of its rhizomes. Results from the field survey were in line with these findings, describing a correlation between herbivore pressure and C. dactylon abundance. We conclude that herbivore disturbance, and not soil nutrients, provide C. dactylon with a competitive advantage over H. hirta, due to vegetative regeneration from its rhizomes. This provides evidence for the importance of concentrated, high herbivore densities for the creation and maintenance of grazing lawns.

  18. 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.

  19. 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

  20. 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

  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. Forage quality and availability for large herbivores in Southern African rangelands

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Stolter, C

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available nitrogen concentration) but instead balance their diet among diff erent plant compounds not only to satisfy their nu- tritional needs (nutrient balancing; see Felton et al., 2016; Simpson & Rauben- heimer, 2012; Westoby, 1974) but also to avoid negative...?’, Stolter et al., 2018). This balanc- ing act is often refl ected by the ingestion of a high variety of food plants (so-called diet-mixing [Villalba et al., 2002]), which can be fulfi lled only in a heterogeneous, diverse environment. Diff erent feeding...

  3. African Zoology

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    African Zoology, a peer-reviewed research journal, publishes original scientific contributions and critical reviews that focus principally on African fauna in terrestrial, freshwater, and marine ecosystems. Research from other regions that advances practical and theoretical aspects of zoology will be considered. Rigorous ...

  4. Toxoplasma gondii coinfection with diseases and parasites in wild rabbits in Scotland.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mason, Sam; Dubey, J P; Smith, Judith E; Boag, Brian

    2015-09-01

    In wild rabbits (Oryctolagus cuniculus) on an estate in Perthshire, central Scotland, the seroprevalence of Toxoplasma gondii was 18/548 (3·3%). The wild rabbit could be a T. gondii reservoir and it has potential value as a sentinel of T. gondii in environmental substrates. Toxoplasma gondii was associated with female sex (P myxomatosis caused by the virus Myxomatosis cuniculi, the intensity of roundworm eggs, the year or season, rabbit age or distance from farm buildings. Coinfections could have been affected by gestational down regulation of type 1 T helper cells. A sudden influx or release of T. gondii oocysts might have occurred. This is the first report of T. gondii in any wild herbivore in Scotland and also the first report of lapine T. gondii as a coinfection with E. stiedae, M. cuniculi and helminths.

  5. Aspects of a two-pasture — herbivore model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jan Åge Riseth

    2004-04-01

    Full Text Available Pastures for reindeer can be divided into green pastures (mainly herbs and grasses of summer time and more or less snow-covered lichen pastures of winter. Fall and spring pastures have a composition in-between these extremes, but for model purposes bisection is sufficient. For the animals the green-pasture season is an anabolic phase with a physiological building-up of protein reserves, while winter is a catabolic phase where food-intake is reduced and the animals to a considerable extent survive on the accumulated reserves from summer. While protein reserves are stored from summer to winter, lichen pastures are stored from year to year. Grasses and herbs not being grazed are wilting by the end of the growing season, while lichens not grazed can live for many years. This corresponds with fundamental differences in both growth pattern and resilience. The implications of the different features, and their interconnections, are not easy to survey without formal modeling. The point of departure is a simple pasture-herbivore model, well known from the literature building on a set of differential equations. A new two-pasture-herbivore model is developed. The model includes as basic elements the Klein (1968 hypothesis and that a residual lichen biomass is kept ungrazed due to snow-cover protection. Further the annual cycle is divided into four stylized seasons with herd rates of winter survival, spring calving, summer physiological growth and fall slaughtering. Isoclines are derived for summer pasture, winter pasture and herbivores. Stability properties are discussed in relation to various situations of seasonal pasture balance. Empirical examples, particularly that of changes in pasture balance and vegetation cover in Western Finnmark, Norway, are discussed. The article finds that the two-pasture model provides important features of reality, such as the stability aspects of pasture balance, which cannot be displayed by a one-pasture model. It is

  6. Strengthening African Union for African Integration: An African ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Log in or Register to get access to full text downloads. ... in the international state system and seek for African initiative in solving African problems. ... of the African Union by examining the efforts of African Leaders towards African integration, ...

  7. William Wilde: Historian.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geary, L

    2016-05-01

    This essay attempts to assess William Wilde as a social historian. It examines some of his contributions to the discipline of history and looks particularly at 'The food of the Irish', which was published in the Dublin University Magazine in February 1854.

  8. Wild ideas in food

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Münke, Christopher; Halloran, Afton Marina Szasz; Vantomme, Paul

    2015-01-01

    Foraging for all manner of wild plants, animals and fungi and their products makes up part of the traditional diets of approximately 300 million worldwide (Bharucha and Pretty, 2010). Furthermore, their relevance in the global food supply is often underestimated, as policies and statistics...

  9. Diseases of wild rice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diseases are much more pronounced in cultivated wild rice than in natural stands, most likely due to the narrower genetic base of the populations, plant stress due to high planting density and floodwater removal prior to harvest, and high relative humidity in the plant canopy. Yield losses occur as ...

  10. Into the urban wild

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mollee, Eefke Maria; Pouliot, Mariéve; McDonald, Morag A.

    2017-01-01

    In sub-Saharan Africa, many people depend on natural resources for their livelihoods. While urbanisation causes landscape changes, little is known of how this process affects the use of wild plant resources by urban populations. This study contributes to addressing this knowledge gap by exploring...

  11. Wild grapevine management

    Science.gov (United States)

    H. Clay Smith

    1989-01-01

    Wild grapevines are a problem for forest managers in many areas of the central hardwood forests. The vines grow on a wide range of soil and site conditions but usually are more concentrated on good sites (northern red oak site index 70 and above), on the faster growing more valuable timber. Presently there is more interest and concern in controlling grapevine for the...

  12. Diet selection and seasonal dietary switch of a large sexually dimorphic herbivore

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shannon, Graeme; Mackey, Robin L.; Slotow, Rob

    2013-01-01

    Although diet selection and the physiological adaptations of grazers and browsers have been widely studied, much less is known about mixed-feeders that target both grass and woody species. The ability to switch diet allows the individual to respond to spatial and temporal changes in forage abundance and quality, providing a key mechanism for large herbivores to exploit heterogeneous environments. We compare diet selection and timing of the seasonal dietary switch for a large-bodied, sexually dimorphic mixed-feeder, the African elephant. The study was carried out on a small population of elephants (n = 48) in the Pongola Game Reserve (PGR), South Africa. Sex-specific dietary composition evaluated from feeding behaviour correlated with composition in dung samples from individuals of known sex. Grass was strongly preferred during the wet season and browse in the winter dry season. However, adult male elephants switched from browse to grass earlier, and consumed a greater overall proportion of grass in their diet, compared with adult females and their associated family groups. Male elephants also spent more time in grassland habitats, and expanded their ranges to a greater extent than females following the end of the dry season. Our results suggest that smaller adult body size, high nutritional demands of offspring, and the constraints of sociality have contributed to female elephants in PGR resolving their diet selection strategies to target higher quality foraging opportunities, whilst males appear to be adopting a rate maximizing approach. The behavioural differences between the sexes are pronounced, which has implications for elephant management approaches that are typically focussed at the population level.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. Urban warming trumps natural enemy regulation of herbivorous pests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dale, Adam G; Frank, Steven D

    Trees provide ecosystem services that counter negative effects of urban habitats on human and environmental health. Unfortunately, herbivorous arthropod pests are often more abundant on urban than rural trees, reducing tree growth, survival, and ecosystem services. Previous research where vegetation complexity was reduced has attributed elevated urban pest abundance to decreased regulation by natural enemies. However, reducing vegetation complexity, particularly the density of overstory trees, also makes cities hotter than natural habitats. We ask how urban habitat characteristics influence an abiotic factor, temperature, and a biotic factor, natural enemy abundance, in regulating the abundance of an urban forest pest, the gloomy scale, (Melanaspis tenebricosa). We used a map of surface temperature to select red maple trees (Acer rubrum) at warmer and cooler sites in Raleigh, North Carolina, USA. We quantified habitat complexity by measuring impervious surface cover, local vegetation structural complexity, and landscape scale vegetation cover around each tree. Using path analysis, we determined that impervious surface (the most important habitat variable) increased scale insect abundance by increasing tree canopy temperature, rather than by reducing natural enemy abundance or percent parasitism. As a mechanism for this response, we found that increasing temperature significantly increases scale insect fecundity and contributes to greater population increase. Specifically, adult female M. tenebricosa egg sets increased by approximately 14 eggs for every 1°C increase in temperature. Climate change models predict that the global climate will increase by 2–3°C in the next 50–100 years, which we found would increase scale insect abundance by three orders of magnitude. This result supports predictions that urban and natural forests will face greater herbivory in the future, and suggests that a primary cause could be direct, positive effects of warming on herbivore

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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

  19. Investigating functional redundancy versus complementarity in Hawaiian herbivorous coral reef fishes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kelly, Emily L A; Eynaud, Yoan; Clements, Samantha M; Gleason, Molly; Sparks, Russell T; Williams, Ivor D; Smith, Jennifer E

    2016-12-01

    Patterns of species resource use provide insight into the functional roles of species and thus their ecological significance within a community. The functional role of herbivorous fishes on coral reefs has been defined through a variety of methods, but from a grazing perspective, less is known about the species-specific preferences of herbivores on different groups of reef algae and the extent of dietary overlap across an herbivore community. Here, we quantified patterns of redundancy and complementarity in a highly diverse community of herbivores at a reef on Maui, Hawaii, USA. First, we tracked fish foraging behavior in situ to record bite rate and type of substrate bitten. Second, we examined gut contents of select herbivorous fishes to determine consumption at a finer scale. Finally, we placed foraging behavior in the context of resource availability to determine how fish selected substrate type. All species predominantly (73-100 %) foraged on turf algae, though there were differences among the types of macroalgae and other substrates bitten. Increased resolution via gut content analysis showed the composition of turf algae consumed by fishes differed across herbivore species. Consideration of foraging behavior by substrate availability revealed 50 % of herbivores selected for turf as opposed to other substrate types, but overall, there were variable foraging portfolios across all species. Through these three methods of investigation, we found higher complementarity among herbivorous fishes than would be revealed using a single metric. These results suggest differences across species in the herbivore "rain of bites" that graze and shape benthic community composition.

  20. Mesoherbivores affect grasshopper communities in a megaherbivore-dominated South African savannah.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van der Plas, Fons; Olff, Han

    2014-06-01

    African savannahs are among the few places on earth where diverse communities of mega- and meso-sized ungulate grazers dominate ecosystem functioning. Less conspicuous, but even more diverse, are the communities of herbivorous insects such as grasshoppers, which share the same food. Various studies investigated the community assembly of these groups separately, but it is poorly known how ungulate communities shape grasshopper communities. Here, we investigated how ungulate species of different body size alter grasshopper communities in a South African savannah. White rhino is the most abundant vertebrate herbivore in our study site. Other common mesoherbivores include buffalo, zebra and impala. We hypothesized that white rhinos would have greater impact than mesoherbivores on grasshopper communities. Using 10-year-old exclosures, at eight sites we compared the effects of ungulates on grasshopper communities in three nested treatments: (i) unfenced plots ('control plots') with all vertebrate herbivores present, (ii) plots with a low cable fence, excluding white rhino ('megaherbivore exclosures'), and (iii) plots with tall fences, excluding all herbivores larger than rodents ('complete ungulate exclosures'). In each plot, we collected data of vegetation structure, grass and grasshopper community composition. Complete ungulate exclosures contained 30% taller vegetation than megaherbivore exclosures and they were dominated by different grass and grasshopper species. Grasshoppers in complete ungulate exclosures were on average 3.5 mm longer than grasshoppers in megaherbivore exclosures, possibly due to changes in plant communities or vegetation structure. We conclude that surprisingly, in this megaherbivore hotspot, mesoherbivores, instead of megaherbivores, most strongly affect grasshopper communities.

  1. African Zoology - Vol 38, No 1 (2003)

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The effects of fences and lions on the ecology of African wild dogs reintroduced to Pilanesberg National Park, South Africa · EMAIL FULL TEXT EMAIL FULL TEXT · DOWNLOAD FULL ... Trial by fire: Social spider colony demographics in periodically burned grassland · EMAIL FULL TEXT EMAIL FULL TEXT DOWNLOAD ...

  2. INTEGRATING AFRICAN VALUES WITH CHRISTIANITY: A ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    JONATHAN

    2016-07-01

    Jul 1, 2016 ... the black race and consequently the African people who constitute the majority of this race. Synonymous with ... Spirit and historical development denied that the black have consciousness of God, the law or any substantial ..... No, she grafts a good scion upon the wild stock that it may bear a crop of more ...

  3. Prioritizing West African medicinal plants for conservation and sustainable extraction studies based on market surveys and species distribution models

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Andel, T.R.; Croft, S.; van Loon, E.E.; Quiroz, D.; Towns, A.M.; Raes, N.

    2015-01-01

    Sub-Saharan African human populations rely heavily on wild-harvested medicinal plants for their health. The trade in herbal medicine provides an income for many West African people, but little is known about the effects of commercial extraction on wild plant populations. Detailed distribution maps

  4. Prioritizing West African medicinal plants for conservation and sustainable extraction studies based on market surveys and species distribution models.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Andel, van T.R.; Croft, S.; Loon, van E.E.; Quiroz Villarreal, D.K.; Towns, A.M.; Raes, N.

    2015-01-01

    Sub-Saharan African human populations rely heavily on wild-harvested medicinal plants for their health. The trade in herbal medicine provides an income for many West African people, but little is known about the effects of commercial extraction on wild plant populations. Detailed distribution maps

  5. 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

  6. 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.

  7. Do wild chimpanzee populations develop diverse cultures? [Latest Thinking

    OpenAIRE

    Boesch, C.

    2017-01-01

    Humans pride themselves on having extensive and diverse cultures. However, cultures can also be observed in animals. The research presented in this video aims at understanding the cultures of wild chimpanzee populations in several African countries and how they differ from each other. As chimpanzees avoid human contact, CHRISTOPHE BOESCH explains, the research team conducted the study by setting up camera traps to catch chimpanzee behavior on video. Forty locations were carefully selected to ...

  8. The effects of large herbivores on the landscape dynamics of a perennial herb

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Hemrová, Lucie; Červenková, Z.; Münzbergová, Zuzana

    2012-01-01

    Roč. 110, č. 7 (2012), s. 1411-1421 ISSN 0305-7364 Institutional support: RVO:67985939 Keywords : herbivores * Scorzonera hispanica * landscape Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 3.449, year: 2012

  9. Seasonal grazing and food preference of herbivores in a Posidonia oceanica meadow

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrea Peirano

    2001-12-01

    Full Text Available Seasonal grazing of the fish Sarpa salpa (L., the urchin Paracentrotus lividus Lamarck and the isopods Idotea spp. was compared with the C/N ratio of adult and intermediate leaves and epiphytes of Posidonia oceanica (L. Delile, collected at three different depths. Despite seasonal differences in grazing, herbivores showed preferences throughout the year for adult leaves with more epiphyte and higher N contents. The maximum grazing on adult and intermediate leaves was observed in September and in June for fish and in March for urchins, whereas it was irregular for isopods. Grazing by the three herbivores was not related to their preference for leaves or epiphytes, notwithstanding the seasonal differences in their C and N contents. We concluded that herbivores show no preference for food type throughout the year and that seasonal consumption of P. oceanica is related mainly to herbivore behaviour.

  10. Core fecal microbiota of domesticated herbivorous ruminant, hindgut fermenters, and monogastric animals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    O' Donnell, Michelle M; Harris, Hugh M B; Ross, R Paul; O'Toole, Paul W

    2017-10-01

    In this pilot study, we determined the core fecal microbiota composition and overall microbiota diversity of domesticated herbivorous animals of three digestion types: hindgut fermenters, ruminants, and monogastrics. The 42 animals representing 10 animal species were housed on a single farm in Ireland and all the large herbivores consumed similar feed, harmonizing two of the environmental factors that influence the microbiota. Similar to other mammals, the fecal microbiota of all these animals was dominated by the Firmicutes and Bacteroidetes phyla. The fecal microbiota spanning all digestion types comprised 42% of the genera identified. Host phylogeny and, to a lesser extent, digestion type determined the microbiota diversity in these domesticated herbivores. This pilot study forms a platform for future studies into the microbiota of nonbovine and nonequine domesticated herbivorous animals. © 2017 The Authors. MicrobiologyOpen published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  11. 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...

  12. African Journals Online (AJOL)

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    African Journals OnLine (AJOL) is the world's largest online library of ... AJOL works to change this, so that African-origin research output is available to Africans ... South African Medical Journal ... Global Journal of Pure and Applied Sciences.

  13. Immunizations and African Americans

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Data > Minority Population Profiles > Black/African American > Immunizations Immunizations and African Americans African American adults are less ... 19 to 35 months had comparable rates of immunization. African American women are as likely to have ...

  14. 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 ...

  15. 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.

  16. 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...

  17. 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...

  18. Indirect effects of predators control herbivore richness and abundance in a benthic eelgrass (Zostera marina) mesograzer community.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amundrud, Sarah L; Srivastava, Diane S; O'Connor, Mary I

    2015-07-01

    Herbivore communities can be sensitive to changes in predator pressure (top-down effects) and resource availability (bottom-up effects) in a wide range of systems. However, it remains unclear whether such top-down and bottom-up effects reflect direct impacts of predators and/or resources on herbivores, or are indirect, reflecting altered interactions among herbivore species. We quantified direct and indirect effects of bottom-up and top-down processes on an eelgrass (Zostera marina) herbivore assemblage. In a field experiment, we factorially manipulated water column nutrients (with Osmocote(™) slow-release fertilizer) and predation pressure (with predator exclusion cages) and measured the effects on herbivore abundance, richness and beta diversity. We examined likely mechanisms of community responses by statistically exploring the response of individual herbivore species to trophic manipulations. Predators increased herbivore richness and total abundance, in both cases through indirect shifts in community composition. Increases in richness occurred through predator suppression of common gammarid amphipod species (Monocorophium acherusicum and Photis brevipes), permitting the inclusion of rarer gammarid species (Aoroides columbiae and Pontogeneia rostrata). Increased total herbivore abundance reflected increased abundance of a caprellid amphipod species (Caprella sp.), concurrent with declines in the abundance of other common species. Furthermore, predators decreased beta diversity by decreasing variability in Caprella sp. abundance among habitat patches. Osmocote(™) fertilization increased nutrient concentrations locally, but nutrients dissipated to background levels within 3 m of the fertilizer. Nutrient addition weakly affected the herbivore assemblage, not affecting richness and increasing total abundance by increasing one herbivore species (Caprella sp.). Nutrient addition did not affect beta diversity. We demonstrated that assemblage-level effects of

  19. 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

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. Rapidly increasing macroalgal cover not related to herbivorous fishes on Mesoamerican reefs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adam Suchley

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Long-term phase shifts from coral to macroalgal dominated reef systems are well documented in the Caribbean. Although the impact of coral diseases, climate change and other factors is acknowledged, major herbivore loss through disease and overfishing is often assigned a primary role. However, direct evidence for the link between herbivore abundance, macroalgal and coral cover is sparse, particularly over broad spatial scales. In this study we use a database of coral reef surveys performed at 85 sites along the Mesoamerican Reef of Mexico, Belize, Guatemala and Honduras, to examine potential ecological links by tracking site trajectories over the period 2005–2014. Despite the long-term reduction of herbivory capacity reported across the Caribbean, the Mesoamerican Reef region displayed relatively low macroalgal cover at the onset of the study. Subsequently, increasing fleshy macroalgal cover was pervasive. Herbivorous fish populations were not responsible for this trend as fleshy macroalgal cover change was not correlated with initial herbivorous fish biomass or change, and the majority of sites experienced increases in macroalgae browser biomass. This contrasts the coral reef top-down herbivore control paradigm and suggests the role of external factors in making environmental conditions more favourable for algae. Increasing macroalgal cover typically suppresses ecosystem services and leads to degraded reef systems. Consequently, policy makers and local coral reef managers should reassess the focus on herbivorous fish protection and consider complementary measures such as watershed management in order to arrest this trend.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. Evidence for Chlamydia in wild mammals of the Serengeti.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pospischil, Andreas; Kaiser, Carmen; Hofmann-Lehmann, Regina; Lutz, Hans; Hilbe, Monika; Vaughan, Lloyd; Borel, Nicole

    2012-10-01

    Only limited information is available on the presence of Chlamydiaceae in wildlife, a deficit that is particularly acute concerning mammalian wildlife in Africa. In a retrospective analysis of organ material from an earlier study on wild mammals from the Seregenti National Park, 521 samples from 54 animals of 14 mammalian species were investigated. The presence of Chlamydiaceae was analyzed using molecular methods and immunohistochemistry. Chlamydial DNA was detected by real-time polymerase chain reaction in formalin-fixed and paraffin-embedded tissues from large ruminants (African buffaloes, Syncerus caffer, n=4) and a large predator (spotted hyena, Crocuta crocuta, n=1). Microarray results revealed Chlamydia abortus in all cases, confirmed by sequencing of selected samples, and a mixed infection with Chlamydia abortus and Chlamydia pneumoniae in an African buffalo. This is the first report of Chlamydiaceae in African wildlife of the Serengeti area.

  8. HERBIVORE POPULATION CRASHES AND WOODLAND STRUCTURE IN EAST-AFRICA

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    PRINS, HHT; VANDERJEUGD, HP

    1. Between 1985 and 1991, bush encroachment was serious in Lake Manyara National Park, northern Tanzania. Shrub cover increased by c. 20%. The increase was independent of initial (1985) shrub cover. 2. Since 1987 there has been a steep decline in the number of African elephant in the Park due to

  9. Tritrophic interactions in wild and cultivated brassicaceous plant species

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gols, R.

    2008-01-01

    Plants have evolved a range of defence traits that prevent or reduce attack by insect herbivores. Direct defence traits hamper or reduce the performance and behaviour of the herbivores, whereas indirect defence promote the efficiency of natural enemies to attack the herbivores. Here, I focused on

  10. The silent mass extinction of insect herbivores in biodiversity hotspots.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fonseca, Carlos Roberto

    2009-12-01

    Habitat loss is silently leading numerous insects to extinction. Conservation efforts, however, have not been designed specifically to protect these organisms, despite their ecological and evolutionary significance. On the basis of species-host area equations, parameterized with data from the literature and interviews with botanical experts, I estimated the number of specialized plant-feeding insects (i.e., monophages) that live in 34 biodiversity hotspots and the number committed to extinction because of habitat loss. I estimated that 795,971-1,602,423 monophagous insect species live in biodiversity hotspots on 150,371 endemic plant species, which is 5.3-10.6 monophages per plant species. I calculated that 213,830-547,500 monophagous species are committed to extinction in biodiversity hotspots because of reduction of the geographic range size of their endemic hosts. I provided rankings of biodiversity hotspots on the basis of estimated richness of monophagous insects and on estimated number of extinctions of monophagous species. Extinction rates were predicted to be higher in biodiversity hotspots located along strong environmental gradients and on archipelagos, where high spatial turnover of monophagous species along the geographic distribution of their endemic plants is likely. The results strongly support the overall strategy of selecting priority conservation areas worldwide primarily on the basis of richness of endemic plants. To face the global decline of insect herbivores, one must expand the coverage of the network of protected areas and improve the richness of native plants on private lands.

  11. Decoupled form and function in disparate herbivorous dinosaur clades

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lautenschlager, Stephan; Brassey, Charlotte A.; Button, David J.; Barrett, Paul M.

    2016-05-01

    Convergent evolution, the acquisition of morphologically similar traits in unrelated taxa due to similar functional demands or environmental factors, is a common phenomenon in the animal kingdom. Consequently, the occurrence of similar form is used routinely to address fundamental questions in morphofunctional research and to infer function in fossils. However, such qualitative assessments can be misleading and it is essential to test form/function relationships quantitatively. The parallel occurrence of a suite of morphologically convergent craniodental characteristics in three herbivorous, phylogenetically disparate dinosaur clades (Sauropodomorpha, Ornithischia, Theropoda) provides an ideal test case. A combination of computational biomechanical models (Finite Element Analysis, Multibody Dynamics Analysis) demonstrate that despite a high degree of morphological similarity between representative taxa (Plateosaurus engelhardti, Stegosaurus stenops, Erlikosaurus andrewsi) from these clades, their biomechanical behaviours are notably different and difficult to predict on the basis of form alone. These functional differences likely reflect dietary specialisations, demonstrating the value of quantitative biomechanical approaches when evaluating form/function relationships in extinct taxa.

  12. Decoupled form and function in disparate herbivorous dinosaur clades.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lautenschlager, Stephan; Brassey, Charlotte A; Button, David J; Barrett, Paul M

    2016-05-20

    Convergent evolution, the acquisition of morphologically similar traits in unrelated taxa due to similar functional demands or environmental factors, is a common phenomenon in the animal kingdom. Consequently, the occurrence of similar form is used routinely to address fundamental questions in morphofunctional research and to infer function in fossils. However, such qualitative assessments can be misleading and it is essential to test form/function relationships quantitatively. The parallel occurrence of a suite of morphologically convergent craniodental characteristics in three herbivorous, phylogenetically disparate dinosaur clades (Sauropodomorpha, Ornithischia, Theropoda) provides an ideal test case. A combination of computational biomechanical models (Finite Element Analysis, Multibody Dynamics Analysis) demonstrate that despite a high degree of morphological similarity between representative taxa (Plateosaurus engelhardti, Stegosaurus stenops, Erlikosaurus andrewsi) from these clades, their biomechanical behaviours are notably different and difficult to predict on the basis of form alone. These functional differences likely reflect dietary specialisations, demonstrating the value of quantitative biomechanical approaches when evaluating form/function relationships in extinct taxa.

  13. AFRICAN BUFFALO OPTIMIZATION ico-pdf

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julius Beneoluchi Odili

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available This is an introductory paper to the newly-designed African Buffalo Optimization (ABO algorithm for solving combinatorial and other optimization problems. The algorithm is inspired by the behavior of African buffalos, a species of wild cows known for their extensive migrant lifestyle. This paper presents an overview of major metaheuristic algorithms with the aim of providing a basis for the development of the African Buffalo Optimization algorithm which is a nature-inspired, population-based metaheuristic algorithm. Experimental results obtained from applying the novel ABO to solve a number of benchmark global optimization test functions as well as some symmetric and asymmetric Traveling Salesman’s Problems when compared to the results obtained from using other popular optimization methods show that the African Buffalo Optimization is a worthy addition to the growing number of swarm intelligence optimization techniques.

  14. Molecular genetic variation in the African wild rice Oryza ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    STORAGESEVER

    2008-05-16

    May 16, 2008 ... Eastern Coasts in Kenya, the South West and North East of Zambia .... 22a - Mosaic of dry deciduous forest and secondary grassland (a) Zambezian .... mopane, a woodland tree species. ..... Island Press, Washington D.C..

  15. Nutrient content of seeds of some wild plants | Nkafamiya | African ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    saponification values were in the range 122 ± 0.14 to 201 ± 0.05 mg KOH. Proximate values of the protein, oil and carbohydrate content of the seeds suggest that they may be adequate for the formulation of animal feeds. The mineral elements present also suggest that the seeds could contribute partially to the overall daily ...

  16. Coprophagy of African Wild Dog faeces by Hooded Vultures in ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Campbell Murn

    Coprophagy by vertebrates is rare, especially among birds and species that consume the faeces of other species (Soave & Brand 1991,. Hirakawa 2001, Shimada 2012). While New World Vultures practice coprophagy (Del Hoyo et al. 1994,. Buckley 1999, Blanco et al. 2013), the only Old World vulture we could find that ...

  17. Longitudinal demographic study of wild populations of African annual killifish

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Vrtílek, Milan; Žák, Jakub; Polačik, Matej; Blažek, Radim; Reichard, Martin

    2018-01-01

    Roč. 8, č. 1 (2018), č. článku 4774. ISSN 2045-2322 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GA16-00291S Institutional support: RVO:68081766 Keywords : annual nothobranchius fish es * short-lived fish * adult sex-ratio * life-span * natural-populations * senescence * mortality * evolution * furzeri * model Subject RIV: EG - Zoology OBOR OECD: Zoology Impact factor: 4.259, year: 2016

  18. First reports of ectoparasites collected from wild-caught exotic reptiles in Florida.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Corn, Joseph L; Mertins, James W; Hanson, Britta; Snow, Skip

    2011-01-01

    We collected ectoparasites from 27 of 51 wild-caught, free-ranging exotic reptiles examined in Florida from 2003 to 2008. Sampled animals represented eight species, five of which yielded ectoparasites. Reported new parasite distribution records for the United States include the following: the first collection of the African tick Amblyomma latum (Koch) from a wild-caught animal [ball python, Python regius (Shaw)] in the United States; the first collection of the lizard scale mite Hirstiella stamii (Jack) from any wild-caught animal [green iguana, Iguana iguana (L.)]; and the first collection of the lizard scale mite Geckobia hemidactyli (Lawrence) in the continental United States from a wild-caught tropical house gecko, Hemidactylus mabouia (Moreau de Jonnès). We also report the first collections of the Neotropical ticks Amblyomma rotundatum (Koch) and Amblyomma dissimile (Koch) from wild-caught Burmese pythons, Python molurus bivittatus (Kuhl); the first collections of A. dissimile from a wild-caught African savannah monitor, Varanus exanthematicus (Bosc); and from wild-caught green iguanas in the United States; and the first collections of the native chiggers Eutrombicula splendens (Ewing) and Eutrombicula cinnabaris (Ewing) from wild-caught Burmese pythons. These reports may only suggest the diversity of reptile ectoparasites introduced and established in Florida and the new host-parasite relationships that have developed among exotic and native ectoparasites and established exotic reptiles.

  19. 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

  20. 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

  1. Herbivore grazing?or trampling? Trampling effects by a large ungulate in cold high?latitude ecosystems

    OpenAIRE

    Heggenes, Jan; Odland, Arvid; Chevalier, Tomas; Ahlberg, J?rgen; Berg, Amanda; Larsson, H?kan; Bjerketvedt, Dag K.

    2017-01-01

    Mammalian herbivores have important top-down effects on ecological processes and landscapes by generating vegetation changes through grazing and trampling. For free-ranging herbivores on large landscapes, trampling is an important ecological factor. However, whereas grazing is widely studied, low-intensity trampling is rarely studied and quantified. The cold-adapted northern tundra reindeer (Rangifer tarandus) is a wide-ranging keystone herbivore in large open alpine and Arctic ecosystems. Re...

  2. Bubble Curtains: Herbivore Exclusion Devices for Ecology and Restoration of Marine Ecosystems?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Scott Bennett

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Herbivorous fishes play a critical role in maintaining or disrupting the ecological resilience of many kelp forests, coral reefs and seagrass ecosystems, worldwide. The increasing rate and scale of benthic habitat loss under global change has magnified the importance of herbivores and highlights the need to study marine herbivory at ecologically relevant scales. Currently, underwater herbivore exclusions (or inclusions have been restricted to small scale experimental plots, in large part due to the challenges of designing structures that can withstand the physical forces of waves and currents, without drastically altering the physical environment inside the exclusion area. We tested the ability of bubble curtains to deter herbivorous fishes from feeding on seaweeds as an alternative to the use of rigid exclusion cages. Kelps (Ecklonia radiata were transplanted onto reefs with high browsing herbivore pressure into either unprotected plots, exclusion cages or plots protected by bubble curtains of 0.785 m2 and 3.14 m2. Remote underwater video was used to compare the behavioral response of fishes to kelps protected and unprotected by bubble curtains. Kelp biomass loss was significantly lower inside the bubble curtains compared to unprotected kelps and did not differ from kelp loss rates in traditional exclusion cages. Consistent with this finding, no herbivorous fishes were observed entering into the bubble curtain at any point during the experiment. In contrast, fish bite rates on unprotected kelps were 1,621 ± 702 bites h−1 (mean ± SE. Our study provides initial evidence that bubble curtains can exclude herbivorous fishes, paving the way for future studies to examine their application at larger spatial and temporal scales, beyond what has been previously feasible using traditional exclusion cages.

  3. 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

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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

  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. African Environment

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Environmental Studies and Regional Planning Bulletin African Environment is published in French and English, and for some issues, in Arabic. (only the issue below has been received by AJOL). Vol 10, No 3 (1999). DOWNLOAD FULL TEXT Open Access DOWNLOAD FULL TEXT Subscription or Fee Access. Table of ...

  10. African Journals Online: Central African Republic

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    African Journals Online: Central African Republic. Home > African Journals Online: Central African Republic. Log in or Register to get access to full text downloads. Username, Password, Remember me, or Register · Browse By Category · Browse Alphabetically · Browse By Country · List All Titles · Free to read Titles This ...

  11. Wild lettuce (Lactuca virosa) toxicity

    OpenAIRE

    Besharat, Sima; Besharat, Mahsa; Jabbari, Ali

    2009-01-01

    Wild lettuce (Lactuca virosa) can cause toxic effects when eaten. Wild lettuce grows in the north of Iran and some natives consume it unaware of its adverse side effects. We describe eight patients with manifestations of wild lettuce toxicity, admitted to a general hospital affiliated to the Golestan University of Medical Sciences. All the patients recovered (although one had to spend 48 h in the intensive care unit) and no chronic complications were reported. A clinical suspicion of toxicity...

  12. Predation-related odours reduce oviposition in a herbivorous mite.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Choh, Yasuyuki; Uefune, Masayoshi; Takabayashi, Junji

    2010-01-01

    When adult females of the herbivorous mite, Tetranychus urticae, were exposed to the predatory mite, Phytoseiulus persimilis, they laid fewer eggs than females that had not been exposed to P. persimilis when transferred onto a new leaf patch. However, when T. urticae females were exposed to either products of P. persimilis or artificially damaged conspecific eggs on a leaf patch, the number of T. urticae eggs on a new leaf patch did not differ significantly from the control. The reduced oviposition was neither due to the feeding activity on the leaf patch with P. persimilis nor to that on the new leaf patch. There was also no significant difference between the number of T. urticae eggs produced on a new leaf patch following exposure to the odours of a neighbouring leaf patch where there had previously been either P. persimilis or T. urticae adults. However, female T. urticae that had been exposed to odours from neighbouring leaf patches on which both T. urticae and P. persimilis had been placed produced significantly fewer eggs on a new leaf patch than those that had not been exposed to such odours. Neither odours from neighbouring intact leaf patches on which T. urticae eggs were preyed on by P. persimilis, nor odours from a neighbouring Parafilm patch on which T. urticae was preyed on by P. persimilis affected the oviposition of T. urticae. These data suggest that the presence of T. urticae, P. persimilis and a leaf patch are needed for the emission of odours to reduce oviposition in T. urticae.

  13. Strategies to mitigate nitrous oxide emissions from herbivore production systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schils, R L M; Eriksen, J; Ledgard, S F; Vellinga, Th V; Kuikman, P J; Luo, J; Petersen, S O; Velthof, G L

    2013-03-01

    Herbivores are a significant source of nitrous oxide (N(2)O) emissions. They account for a large share of manure-related N(2)O emissions, as well as soil-related N(2)O emissions through the use of grazing land, and land for feed and forage production. It is widely acknowledged that mitigation measures are necessary to avoid an increase in N(2)O emissions while meeting the growing global food demand. The production and emissions of N(2)O are closely linked to the efficiency of nitrogen (N) transfer between the major components of a livestock system, that is, animal, manure, soil and crop. Therefore, mitigation options in this paper have been structured along these N pathways. Mitigation technologies involving diet-based intervention include lowering the CP content or increasing the condensed tannin content of the diet. Animal-related mitigation options also include breeding for improved N conversion and high animal productivity. The main soil-based mitigation measures include efficient use of fertilizer and manure, including the use of nitrification inhibitors. In pasture-based systems with animal housing facilities, reducing grazing time is an effective option to reduce N(2)O losses. Crop-based options comprise breeding efforts for increased N-use efficiency and the use of pastures with N(2)-fixing clover. It is important to recognize that all N(2)O mitigation options affect the N and carbon cycles of livestock systems. Therefore, care should be taken that reductions in N(2)O emissions are not offset by unwanted increases in ammonia, methane or carbon dioxide emissions. Despite the abundant availability of mitigation options, implementation in practice is still lagging. Actual implementation will only follow after increased awareness among farmers and greenhouse gases targeted policies. So far, reductions in N(2)O emissions that have been achieved are mostly a positive side effect of other N-targeted policies.

  14. Differential and Synergistic Functionality of Acylsugars in Suppressing Oviposition by Insect Herbivores.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brian M Leckie

    Full Text Available Acylsugars are secondary metabolites exuded from type IV glandular trichomes that provide broad-spectrum insect suppression for Solanum pennellii Correll, a wild relative of cultivated tomato. Acylsugars produced by different S. pennellii accessions vary by sugar moieties (glucose or sucrose and fatty acid side chains (lengths and branching patterns. Our objective was to determine which acylsugar compositions more effectively suppressed oviposition of the whitefly Bemisia tabaci (Gennadius (Middle East--Asia Minor 1 Group, tobacco thrips, Frankliniella fusca (Hinds, and western flower thrips, Frankliniella occidentalis (Pergande. We extracted and characterized acylsugars from four S. pennellii accessions with different compositions, as well as from an acylsugar-producing tomato breeding line. We also fractionated the acylsugars of one S. pennellii accession to examine the effects of its components. Effects of acylsugars on oviposition were evaluated by administering a range of doses to oviposition sites of adult whiteflies and thrips in non-choice and choice bioassays, respectively. The acylsugars from S. pennellii accessions and the tomato breeding line demonstrated differential functionality in their ability to alter the distribution of whitefly oviposition and suppress oviposition on acylsugar treated substrates. Tobacco thrips were sensitive to all compositions while western flower thrips and whiteflies were more sensitive to acylsugars from a subset of S. pennellii accessions. It follows that acylsugars could thus mediate plant-enemy interactions in such a way as to affect evolution of host specialization, resistance specificity, and potentially host differentiation or local adaptation. The acylsugars from S. pennellii LA1376 were separated by polarity into two fractions that differed sharply for their sugar moieties and fatty acid side chains. These fractions had different efficacies, with neither having activity approaching that of the

  15. 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

  16. 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

  17. African Journals Online: African Studies

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Items 1 - 50 of 56 ... Africa Development is the quarterly bilingual journal of CODESRIA. .... relationship in the family, workplace, schools and organisations. .... activities, and personalities driving the democracy and development agenda in the region; 4. Conflict .... with preference for the results of African and Africanist studies.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. Impact of conservation areas on trophic interactions between apex predators and herbivores on coral reefs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rizzari, Justin R; Bergseth, Brock J; Frisch, Ashley J

    2015-04-01

    Apex predators are declining at alarming rates due to exploitation by humans, but we have yet to fully discern the impacts of apex predator loss on ecosystem function. In a management context, it is critically important to clarify the role apex predators play in structuring populations of lower trophic levels. Thus, we examined the top-down influence of reef sharks (an apex predator on coral reefs) and mesopredators on large-bodied herbivores. We measured the abundance, size structure, and biomass of apex predators, mesopredators, and herbivores across fished, no-take, and no-entry management zones in the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park, Australia. Shark abundance and mesopredator size and biomass were higher in no-entry zones than in fished and no-take zones, which indicates the viability of strictly enforced human exclusion areas as tools for the conservation of predator communities. Changes in predator populations due to protection in no-entry zones did not have a discernible influence on the density, size, or biomass of different functional groups of herbivorous fishes. The lack of a relationship between predators and herbivores suggests that top-down forces may not play a strong role in regulating large-bodied herbivorous coral reef fish populations. Given this inconsistency with traditional ecological theories of trophic cascades, trophic structures on coral reefs may need to be reassessed to enable the establishment of appropriate and effective management regimes. © 2014 Society for Conservation Biology.

  2. 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.

  3. Effect of Phytoplankton Richness on Phytoplankton Biomass Is Weak Where the Distribution of Herbivores is Patchy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weis, Jerome J

    2016-01-01

    Positive effects of competitor species richness on competitor productivity can be more pronounced at a scale that includes heterogeneity in 'bottom-up' environmental factors, such as the supply of limiting nutrients. The effect of species richness is not well understood in landscapes where variation in 'top-down' factors, such as the abundance of predators or herbivores, has a strong influence competitor communities. I asked how phytoplankton species richness directly influenced standing phytoplankton biomass in replicate microcosm regions where one patch had a population of herbivores (Daphnia pulicaria) and one patch did not have herbivores. The effect of phytoplankton richness on standing phytoplankton biomass was positive but weak and not statistically significant at this regional scale. Among no-Daphnia patches, there was a significant positive effect of phytoplankton richness that resulted from positive selection effects for two dominant and productive species in polycultures. Among with-Daphnia patches there was not a significant effect of phytoplankton richness. The same two species dominated species-rich polycultures in no- and with-Daphnia patches but both species were relatively vulnerable to consumption by Daphnia. Consistent with previous studies, this experiment shows a measurable positive influence of primary producer richness on biomass when herbivores were absent. It also shows that given the patchy distribution of herbivores at a regional scale, a regional positive effect was not detected.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. African Journals Online (AJOL)

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    It has also been difficult for African researchers to access the work of other African academics. In partnership with hundreds of journals from all over the continent, AJOL works to change this, so that African-origin research output is available to Africans and to the rest of the world. AJOL is ... African Journal of AIDS Research.

  7. 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

  8. 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

  9. Effect of Nitrogen Fertilizer on Herbivores and Its Stimulation to Major Insect Pests in Rice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhong-xian LU

    2007-03-01

    Full Text Available Nitrogen is one of the most important factors in development of herbivore populations. The application of nitrogen fertilizer in plants can normally increase herbivore feeding preference, food consumption, survival, growth, reproduction, and population density, except few examples that nitrogen fertilizer reduces the herbivore performances. In most of the rice growing areas in Asia, the great increases in populations of major insect pests of rice, including planthoppers (Nilaparvata lugens and Sogatella furcifera, leaffolder (Cnaphalocrocis medinalis, and stem borers (Scirpophaga incertulas, Chilo suppressalis, S. innotata, C. polychrysus and Sesamia inferens were closely related to the long-term excessive application of nitrogen fertilizers. The optimal regime of nitrogen fertilizer in irrigated paddy fields is proposed to improve the fertilizer-nitrogen use efficiency and reduce the environmental pollution.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. Mammalian herbivores confer resilience of Arctic shrub-dominated ecosystems to changing climate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaarlejärvi, Elina; Hoset, Katrine S; Olofsson, Johan

    2015-09-01

    Climate change is resulting in a rapid expansion of shrubs in the Arctic. This expansion has been shown to be reinforced by positive feedbacks, and it could thus set the ecosystem on a trajectory toward an alternate, more productive regime. Herbivores, on the other hand, are known to counteract the effects of simultaneous climate warming on shrub biomass. However, little is known about the impact of herbivores on resilience of these ecosystems, that is, the capacity of a system to absorb disturbance and still remain in the same regime, retaining the same function, structure, and feedbacks. Here, we investigated how herbivores affect resilience of shrub-dominated systems to warming by studying the change of shrub biomass after a cessation of long-term experimental warming in a forest-tundra ecotone. As predicted, warming increased the biomass of shrubs, and in the absence of herbivores, shrub biomass in tundra continued to increase 4 years after cessation of the artificial warming, indicating that positive effects of warming on plant growth may persist even over a subsequent colder period. Herbivores contributed to the resilience of these systems by returning them back to the original low-biomass regime in both forest and tundra habitats. These results support the prediction that higher shrub biomass triggers positive feedbacks on soil processes and microclimate, which enable maintaining the rapid shrub growth even in colder climates. Furthermore, the results show that in our system, herbivores facilitate the resilience of shrub-dominated ecosystems to climate warming. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  15. 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.

  16. Responses of tree and insect herbivores to elevated nitrogen inputs: A meta-analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Furong; Dudley, Tom L.; Chen, Baoming; Chang, Xiaoyu; Liang, Liyin; Peng, Shaolin

    2016-11-01

    Increasing atmospheric nitrogen (N) inputs have the potential to alter terrestrial ecosystem function through impacts on plant-herbivore interactions. The goal of our study is to search for a general pattern in responses of tree characteristics important for herbivores and insect herbivorous performance to elevated N inputs. We conducted a meta-analysis based on 109 papers describing impacts of nitrogen inputs on tree characteristics and 16 papers on insect performance. The differences in plant characteristics and insect performance between broadleaves and conifers were also explored. Tree aboveground biomass, leaf biomass and leaf N concentration significantly increased under elevated N inputs. Elevated N inputs had no significantly overall effect on concentrations of phenolic compounds and lignin but adversely affected tannin, as defensive chemicals for insect herbivores. Additionally, the overall effect of insect herbivore performance (including development time, insect biomass, relative growth rate, and so on) was significantly increased by elevated N inputs. According to the inconsistent responses between broadleaves and conifers, broadleaves would be more likely to increase growth by light interception and photosynthesis rather than producing more defensive chemicals to elevated N inputs by comparison with conifers. Moreover, the overall carbohydrate concentration was significantly reduced by 13.12% in broadleaves while increased slightly in conifers. The overall tannin concentration decreased significantly by 39.21% in broadleaves but a 5.8% decrease in conifers was not significant. The results of the analysis indicated that elevated N inputs would provide more food sources and ameliorate tree palatability for insects, while the resistance of trees against their insect herbivores was weakened, especially for broadleaves. Thus, global forest insect pest problems would be aggravated by elevated N inputs. As N inputs continue to rise in the future, forest

  17. Interactive effects of fire and large herbivores on web-building spiders.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foster, C N; Barton, P S; Wood, J T; Lindenmayer, D B

    2015-09-01

    Altered disturbance regimes are a major driver of biodiversity loss worldwide. Maintaining or re-creating natural disturbance regimes is therefore the focus of many conservation programmes. A key challenge, however, is to understand how co-occurring disturbances interact to affect biodiversity. We experimentally tested for the interactive effects of prescribed fire and large macropod herbivores on the web-building spider assemblage of a eucalypt forest understorey and investigated the role of vegetation in mediating these effects using path analysis. Fire had strong negative effects on the density of web-building spiders, which were partly mediated by effects on vegetation structure, while negative effects of large herbivores on web density were not related to changes in vegetation. Fire amplified the effects of large herbivores on spiders, both via vegetation-mediated pathways and by increasing herbivore activity. The importance of vegetation-mediated pathways and fire-herbivore interactions differed for web density and richness and also differed between web types. Our results demonstrate that for some groups of web-building spiders, the effects of co-occurring disturbance drivers may be mostly additive, whereas for other groups, interactions between drivers can amplify disturbance effects. In our study system, the use of prescribed fire in the presence of high densities of herbivores could lead to reduced densities and altered composition of web-building spiders, with potential cascading effects through the arthropod food web. Our study highlights the importance of considering both the independent and interactive effects of disturbances, as well as the mechanisms driving their effects, in the management of disturbance regimes.

  18. Impact of herbivore identity on algal succession and coral growth on a Caribbean reef.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Deron E Burkepile

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Herbivory is an important top-down force on coral reefs that regulates macroalgal abundance, mediates competitive interactions between macroalgae and corals, and provides resilience following disturbances such as hurricanes and coral bleaching. However, reductions in herbivore diversity and abundance via disease or over-fishing may harm corals directly and may indirectly increase coral susceptibility to other disturbances.In two experiments over two years, we enclosed equivalent densities and masses of either single-species or mixed-species of herbivorous fishes in replicate, 4 m(2 cages at a depth of 17 m on a reef in the Florida Keys, USA to evaluate the effects of herbivore identity and species richness on colonization and development of macroalgal communities and the cascading effects of algae on coral growth. In Year 1, we used the redband parrotfish (Sparisoma aurofrenatum and the ocean surgeonfish (Acanthurus bahianus; in Year 2, we used the redband parrotfish and the princess parrotfish (Scarus taeniopterus. On new substrates, rapid grazing by ocean surgeonfish and princess parrotfish kept communities in an early successional stage dominated by short, filamentous algae and crustose coralline algae that did not suppress coral growth. In contrast, feeding by redband parrotfish allowed an accumulation of tall filaments and later successional macroalgae that suppressed coral growth. These patterns contrast with patterns from established communities not undergoing primary succession; on established substrates redband parrotfish significantly reduced upright macroalgal cover while ocean surgeonfish and princess parrotfish allowed significant increases in late successional macroalgae.This study further highlights the importance of biodiversity in affecting ecosystem function in that different species of herbivorous fishes had very different impacts on reef communities depending on the developmental stage of the community. The species

  19. Obesity and African Americans

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Data > Minority Population Profiles > Black/African American > Obesity Obesity and African Americans African American women have the ... youthonline . [Accessed 08/18/2017] HEALTH IMPACT OF OBESITY People who are overweight are more likely to ...

  20. African Journals Online: Kenya

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Items 1 - 29 of 29 ... African Journal of Food, Agriculture, Nutrition and Development ... African and international non-governmental organizations (NGOs); African and .... for scholars and practitioners in all spheres of biological sciences to publish ...

  1. Retraction | Simon | African Zoology

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Panthera leo) ina. West African national park”. African Zoology is publishing an Editorial Expression of Concern regarding the following article: “New records of a threatened lion population (Panthera leo) in a West African national park” by ...

  2. 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

  3. 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,...

  4. 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

  5. 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

  6. 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)

  7. Diversity and impact of herbivorous insects on Brazilian peppertree in Florida prior to release of exotic biological control agents

    Science.gov (United States)

    The impact of insect herbivores on the performance of Brazilian peppertree, Schinus terebinthifolia Raddi (Anacardiaceae), was evaluated at two locations in Florida using an insecticide exclusion method. Although several species of insect herbivores were collected on the invasive tree, there was no...

  8. Quantification of population sizes of large herbivores and their long-term functional role in ecosystems using dung fungal spores

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Baker, Ambroise G.; Cornelissen, Perry; Bhagwat, Shonil A.; Vera, Frans M.W.; Willis, Katherine J.

    2016-01-01

    The relationship between large herbivore numbers and landscape cover over time is poorly understood. There are two schools of thought: one views large herbivores as relatively passive elements upon the landscape and the other as ecosystem engineers driving vegetation succession. The latter

  9. Effects of dietary nicotine on the development of an insect herbivore, its parasitoid and secondary hyperparasitoid over four trophic levels

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Harvey, J.A.; Dam, van N.M.; Witjes, L.M.A.; Soler, R.; Gols, R.

    2007-01-01

    1. Allelochemicals in herbivore diet are known to affect the development of higher trophic levels, such as parasitoids and predators. 2. This study examines how differing levels of nicotine affects the development of a herbivore, its parasitoid and secondary hyperparasitoid over four trophic levels.

  10. Diet and habitat-niche relationships within an assemblage of large herbivores in a seasonal tropical forest

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ahrestani, F.S.; Heitkonig, I.M.A.; Prins, H.H.T.

    2012-01-01

    There is little understanding of how large mammalian herbivores in Asia partition habitat and forage resources, and vary their diet and habitat selection seasonally in order to coexist. We studied an assemblage of four large herbivores, chital (Axis axis), sambar (Cervus unicolor), gaur (Bos gaurus)

  11. 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

  12. 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...

  13. Vitamin A-related potential of wild edible plants in a school ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    This study explored the potential of promoting edible wild plants as source of vitamin A in a resource-limited rural, South African middle-school (grades 7-9) garden, using a mixed method approach of four parallel sub-studies in the rainy season of 2007. Gardening practices in the surrounding community were determined ...

  14. Assessing the consequences of global change for forest disturbance from herbivores and pathogens.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ayres, M P; Lombardero, M J

    2000-11-15

    Herbivores and pathogens impact the species composition, ecosystem function, and socioeconomic value of forests. Herbivores and pathogens are an integral part of forests, but sometimes produce undesirable effects and a degradation of forest resources. In the United States, a few species of forest pests routinely have significant impacts on up to 20 million ha of forest with economic costs that probably exceed $1 billion/year. Climatic change could alter patterns of disturbance from herbivores and pathogens through: (1) direct effects on the development and survival of herbivores and pathogens; (2) physiological changes in tree defenses; and (3) indirect effects from changes in the abundance of natural enemies (e.g. parasitoids of insect herbivores), mutualists (e.g. insect vectors of tree pathogens), and competitors. Because of their short life cycles, mobility, reproductive potential, and physiological sensitivity to temperature, even modest climate change will have rapid impacts on the distribution and abundance of many forest insects and pathogens. We identify 32 syndromes of biotic disturbance in North American forests that should be carefully evaluated for their responses to climate change: 15 insect herbivores, browsing mammals; 12 pathogens; 1 plant parasite; and 3 undiagnosed patterns of forest decline. It is probable that climatic effects on some herbivores and pathogens will impact on biodiversity, recreation, property value, forest industry, and even water quality. Some scenarios are beneficial (e.g. decreased snow cover may increase winter mortality of some insect pests), but many are detrimental (e.g. warming tends to accelerate insect development rate and facilitate range expansions of pests and climate change tends to produce a mismatch between mature trees and their environment, which can increase vulnerability to herbivores and pathogens). Changes in forest disturbance can produce feedback to climate through affects on water and carbon flux in

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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...

  18. Suppression of soil decomposers and promotion of long-lived, root herbivorous nematodes by climate change

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Stevnbak, Karen; Maraldo, Kristine; Georgieva, Slavka

    2012-01-01

    to climate change predictions for the coming decades. Removing precipitation for two summer months reduced all decomposer organisms assessed, i.e., microbial biomass, protozoa, bacteri- and fungivorous nematodes and enchytraeids, probably with negative effects on soil decomposition. Increasing temperature...... by about 1 °C reduced all nematodes including the dominant trophic group, the root herbivores, by almost 50% in the upper layer. The remaining assemblage of root herbivorous nematodes, however, shifted towards species with longer generation times, possibly because of an earlier start of plant growth...

  19. 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

  20. Characterization of Natural and Simulated Herbivory on Wild Soybean (Glycine soja Seib. et Zucc. for Use in Ecological Risk Assessment of Insect Protected Soybean.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hidetoshi Goto

    Full Text Available Insect-protected soybean (Glycine max (L. Merr. was developed to protect against foliage feeding by certain Lepidopteran insects. The assessment of potential consequences of transgene introgression from soybean to wild soybean (Glycine soja Seib. et Zucc. is required as one aspect of the environmental risk assessment (ERA in Japan. A potential hazard of insect-protected soybean may be hypothesized as transfer of a trait by gene flow to wild soybean and subsequent reduction in foliage feeding by Lepidopteran insects that result in increased weediness of wild soybean in Japan. To assess this potential hazard two studies were conducted. A three-year survey of wild soybean populations in Japan was conducted to establish basic information on foliage damage caused by different herbivores. When assessed across all populations and years within each prefecture, the total foliage from different herbivores was ≤ 30%, with the lowest levels of defoliation (< 2% caused by Lepidopteran insects. A separate experiment using five levels of simulated defoliation (0%, 10%, 25%, 50% and 100% was conducted to assess the impact on pod and seed production and time to maturity of wild soybean. The results indicated that there was no decrease in wild soybean plants pod or seed number or time to maturity at defoliation rates up to 50%. The results from these experiments indicate that wild soybean is not limited by lepidopteran feeding and has an ability to compensate for defoliation levels observed in nature. Therefore, the potential hazard to wild soybean from the importation of insect-protected soybean for food and feed into Japan is negligible.

  1. 29 CFR 780.114 - Wild commodities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... Agricultural Or Horticultural Commodities § 780.114 Wild commodities. Employees engaged in the gathering or harvesting of wild commodities such as mosses, wild rice, burls and laurel plants, the trapping of wild... 29 Labor 3 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Wild commodities. 780.114 Section 780.114 Labor Regulations...

  2. Ancient DNA from Nubian and Somali wild ass provides insights into donkey ancestry and domestication.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kimura, Birgitta; Marshall, Fiona B; Chen, Shanyuan; Rosenbom, Sónia; Moehlman, Patricia D; Tuross, Noreen; Sabin, Richard C; Peters, Joris; Barich, Barbara; Yohannes, Hagos; Kebede, Fanuel; Teclai, Redae; Beja-Pereira, Albano; Mulligan, Connie J

    2011-01-07

    Genetic data from extant donkeys (Equus asinus) have revealed two distinct mitochondrial DNA haplogroups, suggestive of two separate domestication events in northeast Africa about 5000 years ago. Without distinct phylogeographic structure in domestic donkey haplogroups and with little information on the genetic makeup of the ancestral African wild ass, however, it has been difficult to identify wild ancestors and geographical origins for the domestic mitochondrial clades. Our analysis of ancient archaeological and historic museum samples provides the first genetic information on the historic Nubian wild ass (Equus africanus africanus), Somali wild ass (Equus africanus somaliensis) and ancient donkey. The results demonstrate that the Nubian wild ass was an ancestor of the first donkey haplogroup. In contrast, the Somali wild ass has considerable mitochondrial divergence from the Nubian wild ass and domestic donkeys. These findings resolve the long-standing issue of the role of the Nubian wild ass in the domestication of the donkey, but raise new questions regarding the second ancestor for the donkey. Our results illustrate the complexity of animal domestication, and have conservation implications for critically endangered Nubian and Somali wild ass.

  3. Parasites of domestic and wild animals in South Africa. XLVIII . Ticks (Acari: Ixodidae infesting domestic cats and wild felids in southern Africa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ivan G. Horak

    2010-11-01

    Full Text Available Ticks collected from domestic cats (Felis catus, cheetahs (Acinonyx jubatus,caracals (Caracal caracal, African wild cats (Felis lybica, black-footed cats (Felis nigripes, a serval (Leptailurus serval, lions(Panthera leo, and leopards (Panthera pardus were identified and counted. Thirteen species of ixodid ticks and one argasid tick were identified from domestic cats and 17 species of ixodid ticks from wild felids. The domestic cats and wild felids harboured 11 ixodid species in common. The adults of Haemaphysalis elliptica, the most abundant tick species infesting cats and wild felids, were most numerous on a domestic cat in late winter and in mid-summer, during 2 consecutive years. The recorded geographic distribution of the recently described Haemaphysalis colesbergensis, a parasite of cats and caracals, was extended by 2 new locality records in the Northern Cape Province,South Africa.

  4. 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.

  5. Genome Sequences of Three Vaccine Strains and Two Wild-Type Canine Distemper Virus Strains from a Recent Disease Outbreak in South Africa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loots, Angelika K; Du Plessis, Morné; Dalton, Desiré Lee; Mitchell, Emily; Venter, Estelle H

    2017-07-06

    Canine distemper virus causes global multihost infectious disease. This report details complete genome sequences of three vaccine and two new wild-type strains. The wild-type strains belong to the South African lineage, and all three vaccine strains to the America 1 lineage. This constitutes the first genomic sequences of this virus from South Africa. Copyright © 2017 Loots et al.

  6. 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

  7. FELINE IMMUNODEFICIENCY VIRUS (FIV) IN WILD PALLAS’ CATS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Meredith A.; Munkhtsog, Bariushaa; Troyer, Jennifer L.; Ross, Steve; Sellers, Rani; Fine, Amanda E.; Swanson, William F.; Roelke, Melody E.; O’Brien1, Stephen J.

    2009-01-01

    Feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV), a feline lentivirus related to HIV, causes immune dysfunction in domestic and wild cats. The Pallas’ cat is the only species from Asia known to harbor a species-specific strain of FIV designated FIVOma in natural populations. Here, a 25% seroprevalence of FIV is reported from 28 wild Mongolian Pallas’ cats sampled from 2000-2008. Phylogenetic analysis of proviral RT-Pol from eight FIVOma isolates from Mongolia, Russia, China and Kazakhstan reveals a unique monophyletic lineage of the virus within the Pallas’ cat population, most closely related to the African cheetah and leopard FIV strains. Histopathological examination of lymph node and spleen from infected and uninfected Pallas’ cats suggests that FIVOma causes immune depletion in its’ native host. PMID:19926144

  8. Wild lettuce (Lactuca virosa) toxicity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Besharat, Sima; Besharat, Mahsa; Jabbari, Ali

    2009-01-01

    Wild lettuce (Lactuca virosa) can cause toxic effects when eaten. Wild lettuce grows in the north of Iran and some natives consume it unaware of its adverse side effects. We describe eight patients with manifestations of wild lettuce toxicity, admitted to a general hospital affiliated to the Golestan University of Medical Sciences. All the patients recovered (although one had to spend 48 h in the intensive care unit) and no chronic complications were reported. A clinical suspicion of toxicity caused by wild lettuce intake and an accurate history formed the basis of the diagnosis. Conservative treatment, vital sign monitoring, control of patient intake and output, and reducing patient agitation provided the basis for treatment.

  9. Niche conservatism and the invasive potential of the wild boar.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sales, Lilian Patrícia; Ribeiro, Bruno R; Hayward, Matt Warrington; Paglia, Adriano; Passamani, Marcelo; Loyola, Rafael

    2017-09-01

    Niche conservatism, i.e. the retention of a species' fundamental niche through evolutionary time, is cornerstone for biological invasion assessments. The fact that species tend to maintain their original climate niche allows predictive maps of invasion risk to anticipate potential invadable areas. Unravelling the mechanisms driving niche shifts can shed light on the management of invasive species. Here, we assessed niche shifts in one of the world's worst invasive species: the wild boar Sus scrofa. We also predicted potential invadable areas based on an ensemble of three ecological niche modelling methods, and evaluated the performance of models calibrated with native vs. pooled (native plus invaded) species records. By disentangling the drivers of change on the exotic wild boar population's niches, we found strong evidence for niche conservatism during biological invasion. Ecological niche models calibrated with both native and pooled range records predicted convergent areas. Also, observed niche shifts are mostly explained by niche unfilling, i.e. there are unoccupied areas in the exotic range where climate is analogous to the native range. Niche unfilling is expected as result of recent colonization and ongoing dispersal, and was potentially stronger for the Neotropics, where a recent wave of introductions for pig-farming and game-hunting has led to high wild boar population growth rates. The invasive potential of wild boar in the Neotropics is probably higher than in other regions, which has profound management implications if we are to prevent their invasion into species-rich areas, such as Amazonia, coupled with expansion of African swine fever and possibly great economic losses. Although the originally Eurasian-wide distribution suggests a pre-adaptation to a wide array of climates, the wild boar world-wide invasion does not exhibit evidence of niche evolution. The invasive potential of the wild boar therefore probably lies on the reproductive, dietary and

  10. 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

  11. 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

  12. 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.

  13. 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

  14. 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

  15. 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

  16. Differential effects of land use on ant and herbivore insect communities associated with Caryocar brasiliense (Caryocaraceae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Frederico S. Neves

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Simplification of natural habitats leads to a modification of the community associated with a host plant. Pequi trees (Caryocar brasiliense are common to find in central Brazil, especially in the middle of monocultures, such as soy, corn, pasturelands or Eucalyptus plantations. On this scenario we hypothesized that habitat modification differentially affects the diversity of ants and herbivore insects associated with this species. The aim of the work was to test if C. brasiliense trees located in human modified habitats, support a lower species richness and abundance of ants, and a greater species richness and abundance of insect herbivores, compared to preserved cerrado habitats. The study was conducted in a Cerrado area located in Northern Minas Gerais State, Brazil. Ants and herbivore insects were collected monthly during 2005 using beating technique. The results showed that ant species richness was higher in pequi trees located in preserved Cerrado, followed by trees in pastureland and Eucalyptus plantation, respectively. The ant abundance was lower in the Eucalyptus plantation but no difference in ant abundance was observed between trees in pastureland and the preserved Cerrado. Moreover, herbivore insects exhibited lower number of species and individuals in trees located in the preserved Cerrado than in the pastureland and Eucalyptus plantation. We concluded that habitats simplified by human activities may result in diversity loss and may change species interactions.

  17. Tropical herbivorous phasmids, but not litter snails, alter decomposition rates by modifying litter bacteria

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chelse M. Prather; Gary E. Belovsky; Sharon A. Cantrell; Grizelle González

    2018-01-01

    Consumers can alter decomposition rates through both feces and selective feeding in many ecosystems, but these combined effects have seldom been examined in tropical ecosystems. Members of the detrital food web (litter-feeders or microbivores) should presumably have greater effects on decomposition than herbivores, members of the green food web. Using litterbag...

  18. Cytokinin levels and signaling respond to wounding and the perception of herbivore elicitors in Nicotiana attenuata

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Schäfer, M.; Meza-Canales, I.D.; Navarro-Quezada, A.; Brütting, C.; Vaňková, Radomíra; Baldwin, I.T.; Meldau, S.

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 57, č. 2 (2015), s. 198-212 ISSN 1672-9072 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA206/09/2062 Institutional support: RVO:61389030 Keywords : Arabidopsis thaliana * cytokinin * herbivore-associated molecular patterns Subject RIV: ED - Physiology Impact factor: 3.670, year: 2015

  19. 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

  20. Effects of large herbivores on wood pasture dynamics in a European wetland system

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cornelissen, P.; Bokdam, J.; Sykora, K.V.; Berendse, F.

    2014-01-01

    Whether self-regulating large herbivores play a key role in the development of wood-pasture landscapes remains a crucial unanswered question for both ecological theory and nature conservation. We describe and analyse how a ‘partly self-regulating’ population of cattle, horses and red deer affected

  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. 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

  3. Burrowing herbivores alter soil carbon and nitrogen dynamics in a semi-arid ecosystem, Argentina

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kenneth L. Clark; Lyn C. Branch; Jose L. Hierro; Diego Villarreal

    2016-01-01

    Activities of burrowing herbivores, including movement of soil and litter and deposition of waste material, can alter the distribution of labile carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) in soil, affecting spatial patterning of nutrient dynamics in ecosystems where they are abundant. Their role in ecosystem processes in surface soil has been studied extensively, but effects of...

  4. 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.

  5. Status of babesiosis among domestic herbivores in Iran: a systematic review and meta-analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haghi, Mousa Motavalli; Etemadifar, Fariborz; Fakhar, Mahdi; Teshnizi, Saeed Hosseini; Soosaraei, Masoud; Shokri, Azar; Hajihasani, Atta; Mashhadi, Hamed

    2017-04-01

    Babesiosis is a protozoal disease caused by Babesia spp. in mammals and humans worldwide. It is one of the most important tick-borne diseases, which affects livestock productions, reproductions, and accordingly failing economy. In this, systematic review and meta-analysis, study, the prevalence of babesiosis among domestic herbivores in Iran, between 1998 and 2015, was methodically reviewed. Nine databases including five English and four Persian databases were explored. A total of 49 articles, as regards the examination of 13,547 sheep, 1920 goats, 7167 cattle, and 940 horses, corresponding to prevalence of babesiosis from different regions of Iran were gathered for our qualifying criteria. The overall prevalence of babesiosis was expected to be 14% (95% CI 12%, 16%) in domestic herbivores. Our results showed the highest prevalence in Khorasan Razavi (18.6%) and West Azarbaijan (15.2%) and the lowest in Mazandaran (8.8%) and Isfahan provinces (9.6%), respectively. The high prevalence of Babesia infection in herbivores (mostly sheep and goats) confirms the established enzootic situation of babesiosis in Iran, particularly in western and northeastern regions of the country. Our data offered important and updated information on the epidemiology of babesiosis, for the first time, in domestic herbivores in Iran, and will likely be contributing to the expansion of the screening and control strategies to reduce health and economic impacts among farm animals.

  6. 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

  7. 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

  8. Effects of herbivore grazing on the physiognomy of the coralline alga ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Effects of herbivore grazing on the physiognomy of the coralline alga Spongites yendoi and on associated competitive interactions. ... overlapping distributions between strongly interacting species along a broad geographical gradient is not just a significant feature of the ecology of terrestrial, but also of marine ecosystems.

  9. Endozoochory by free-ranging, large herbivores : Ecological correlates and perspectives for restoration

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mouissie, Albert; Vos, P; Verhagen, HMC; Bakker, JP

    2005-01-01

    Seed dispersal via ingestion and defecation by large herbivores provides a possible aid for ecological restoration of plant communities, by connecting source communities of target species with habitat restoration sites. It is also a possible threat due to invasion of weeds, grasses or exotic

  10. Nectar and pollen feeding by insect herbivores and implications for multitrophic interactions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wäckers, F.L.; Romeis, J.; van Rijn, P.

    2007-01-01

    Among herbivorous insects with a complete metamorphosis the larval and adult stages usually differ considerably in their nutritional requirements and food ecology. Often, feeding on plant structural tissue is restricted to the larval stage, whereas the adult stage feeds primarily or exclusively on

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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...

  14. 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

  15. Bottom-up vs. top-down effects on terrestrial insect herbivores: a meta-analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vidal, Mayra C; Murphy, Shannon M

    2018-01-01

    Primary consumers are under strong selection from resource ('bottom-up') and consumer ('top-down') controls, but the relative importance of these selective forces is unknown. We performed a meta-analysis to compare the strength of top-down and bottom-up forces on consumer fitness, considering multiple predictors that can modulate these effects: diet breadth, feeding guild, habitat/environment, type of bottom-up effects, type of top-down effects and how consumer fitness effects are measured. We focused our analyses on the most diverse group of primary consumers, herbivorous insects, and found that in general top-down forces were stronger than bottom-up forces. Notably, chewing, sucking and gall-making herbivores were more affected by top-down than bottom-up forces, top-down forces were stronger than bottom-up in both natural and controlled (cultivated) environments, and parasitoids and predators had equally strong top-down effects on insect herbivores. Future studies should broaden the scope of focal consumers, particularly in understudied terrestrial systems, guilds, taxonomic groups and top-down controls (e.g. pathogens), and test for more complex indirect community interactions. Our results demonstrate the surprising strength of forces exerted by natural enemies on herbivorous insects, and thus the necessity of using a tri-trophic approach when studying insect-plant interactions. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd/CNRS.

  16. Interaction between a fungal endophyte and root herbivores of Ammophila arenaria

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hol, W.H.G.; de la Peña, E.; Moens, M.; Cook, R.

    2007-01-01

    The effect of an endophytic fungus (Acremonium strictum) on plant-growth related parameters of marram grass (Ammophila arenaria), and its potential as a protective agent against root herbivores (Pratylenchus dunensis and Pratylenchus penetrans, root-lesion nematodes) was investigated in two

  17. 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

  18. 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 ...

  19. The impact of herbivores on nitrogen mineralization rate : consequences for salt-marsh succession

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Wijnen, HJ; van der Wal, R; Bakker, JP

    Soil net N-mineralization rate was measured along a successional gradient in salt-marsh sites that were grazed by vertebrate herbivores, and in 5-year-old exclosures from which the animals were excluded. Mineralization rate was significantly higher at ungrazed than at grazed sites. In the absence of

  20. 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

  1. Wild dogma II: The role and implications of wild dogma for wild dog management in Australia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Benjamin L. ALLEN, Richard M. ENGEMAN, Lee R. ALLEN

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available The studies of Allen (2011 and Allen et al. (2011 recently examined the methodology underpinning claims that dingoes provide net benefits to biodiversity by suppressing foxes and cats. They found most studies to have design flaws and/or observational methods that preclude valid interpretations from the data, describing most of the current literature as ‘wild dogma’. In this short supplement, we briefly highlight the roles and implications of wild dogma for wild dog management in Australia. We discuss nomenclature, and the influence that unreliable science can have on policy and practice changes related to apex predator management [Current Zoology 57 (6: 737–740, 2011].

  2. Aboveground vertebrate and invertebrate herbivore impact on net N mineralization in subalpine grasslands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Risch, Anita C; Schotz, Martin; Vandegehuchte, Martijn L; Van Der Putten, Wim H; Duyts, Henk; Raschein, Ursina; Gwiazdowicz, Dariusz J; Busse, Matt D; Page-dumroese, Deborah S; Zimmermann, Stephan

    2015-12-01

    Aboveground herbivores have strong effects on grassland nitrogen (N) cycling. They can accelerate or slow down soil net N mineralization depending on ecosystem productivity and grazing intensity. Yet, most studies only consider either ungulates or invertebrate herbivores, but not the combined effect of several functionally different vertebrate and invertebrate herbivore species or guilds. We assessed how a diverse herbivore community affects net N mineralization in subalpine grasslands. By using size-selective fences, we progressively excluded large, medium, and small mammals, as well as invertebrates from two vegetation types, and assessed how the exclosure types (ET) affected net N mineralization. The two vegetation types differed in long-term management (centuries), forage quality, and grazing history and intensity. To gain a more mechanistic understanding of how herbivores affect net N mineralization, we linked mineralization to soil abiotic (temperature; moisture; NO3-, NH4+, and total inorganic N concentrations/pools; C, N, P concentrations; pH; bulk density), soil biotic (microbial biomass; abundance of collembolans, mites, and nematodes) and plant (shoot and root biomass; consumption; plant C, N, and fiber content; plant N pool) properties. Net N mineralization differed between ET, but not between vegetation types. Thus, short-term changes in herbivore community composition and, therefore, in grazing intensity had a stronger effect on net N mineralization than long-term management and grazing history. We found highest N mineralization values when only invertebrates were present, suggesting that mammals had a negative effect on net N mineralization. Of the variables included in our analyses, only mite abundance and aboveground plant biomass explained variation in net N mineralization among ET. Abundances of both mites and leaf-sucking invertebrates were positively correlated with aboveground plant biomass, and biomass increased with progressive exclusion

  3. African Solutions to African Problems?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Emmanuel, Nikolas G.; Schwartz, Brendan

    2017-01-01

    . The emergence of Déby’s Chad depends both on its ability to accomplish sub-imperial tasks encouraged by these actors, while obfuscating undemocratic governance and human rights abuses at home. Nonetheless, Déby’s role in regional security has helped him achieve a certain degree of agency in his relationship...... and maintain control of the state. These range from “liberal” desires to help control the region’s trouble spots in places like Mali, to clearly illiberal medaling in the domestic affairs of neighbors like the Central African Republic, with the fight against Boko Haram somewhere in the middle. This paper seeks...

  4. African Journals Online (AJOL)

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    It has also been difficult for African researchers to access the work of other African academics. In partnership with hundreds of journals from all over the continent, AJOL works to change this, so that African-origin research output is available to Africans and to the rest of the ... Egyptian Journal of Medical Human Genetics.

  5. African Journals Online (AJOL)

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    African Journals OnLine (AJOL) is the world's largest and pre-eminent collection of peer-reviewed, African-published scholarly journals. Historically, scholarly information has flowed from North to South and from West to East. It has also been difficult for African researchers to access the work of other African academics.

  6. Trends in African philosophy

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    JONATHAN

    In the contention of Oladipo (2006), the debate on the idea of. African philosophy which has been divided into trends or schools, dates back to the 1960's and 70's, which constitute the modern epoch of African philosophy, when some African thinkers began to question the perspective that traditional African beliefs and.

  7. African Journals Online (AJOL)

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    It has also been difficult for African researchers to access the work of other African ... search for an article by title, author/s or keywords,; and find other information sources ... Southern African Business Review; The role played by the South African ... The Basis of Distinction Between Qualitative and Quantitative Research in ...

  8. African Journals Online (AJOL)

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    It has also been difficult for African researchers to access the work of other African academics. In partnership with hundreds of journals from all over the continent, AJOL works to change this, so that African-origin research output is available to Africans and ... Featured Country: South Africa, Featured Journal: Ergonomics SA ...

  9. Joint Effect of Solar UVB and Heat Stress on the Seasonal Change of Egg Hatching Success in the Herbivorous False Spider Mite (Acari: Tenuipalpidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sudo, M; Osakabe, M

    2015-12-01

    Seasonal population dynamics of an herbivorous mite has been documented in terms of the relationship between thermoresponses and temporal biological factors such as resource availability or predation risk. Although recent studies emphasize the deleterious effects of solar ultraviolet-B (UVB; 280-320 nm wavelengths) radiation on plant-dwelling mites, how UVB affects mite population remains largely unknown. On a wild shrub Viburnum erosum var. punctatum in Kyoto, an herbivorous false spider mite, Brevipalpus obovatus Donnadieu, occurs only in autumn. Females of this species lay one-third of their eggs on upper leaf surfaces. Oviposition on upper surfaces is beneficial for avoiding predation by phytoseiids, but exposes eggs to solar UVB and heat stress. To test the hypothesis that the seasonal occurrence of this mite is determined by interactions between solar UVB radiation and temperature, we examined variation in egg hatching success under near-ambient and UV-attenuated sunlight conditions from spring to autumn. The UV-attenuation significantly improved hatching success. However, most eggs died under heat stress regardless of UV treatments in July and August. We established a deterministic heat stress-cumulative UVB dose-egg hatching success response model, which we applied to meteorological data. The model analyses illustrated lower and higher survivability peaks in late May and October, respectively, which partly corresponded to data for annual field occurrence, indicating the importance of solar UVB radiation and heat stress as determinants of the seasonal occurrence of this mite. © The Authors 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  10. Monoterpenes as inhibitors of digestive enzymes and counter-adaptations in a specialist avian herbivore.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kohl, Kevin D; Pitman, Elizabeth; Robb, Brecken C; Connelly, John W; Dearing, M Denise; Forbey, Jennifer Sorensen

    2015-05-01

    Many plants produce plant secondary metabolites (PSM) that inhibit digestive enzymes of herbivores, thus limiting nutrient availability. In response, some specialist herbivores have evolved digestive enzymes that are resistant to inhibition. Monoterpenes, a class of PSMs, have not been investigated with respect to the interference of specific digestive enzymes, nor have such interactions been studied in avian herbivores. We investigated this interaction in the Greater Sage-Grouse (Phasianidae: Centrocercus urophasianus), which specializes on monoterpene-rich sagebrush species (Artemisia spp.). We first measured the monoterpene concentrations in gut contents of free-ranging sage-grouse. Next, we compared the ability of seven individual monoterpenes present in sagebrush to inhibit a protein-digesting enzyme, aminopeptidase-N. We also measured the inhibitory effects of PSM extracts from two sagebrush species. Inhibition of aminopeptidase-N in sage-grouse was compared to inhibition in chickens (Gallus gallus). We predicted that sage-grouse enzymes would retain higher activity when incubated with isolated monoterpenes or sagebrush extracts than chicken enzymes. We detected unchanged monoterpenes in the gut contents of free-ranging sage-grouse. We found that three isolated oxygenated monoterpenes (borneol, camphor, and 1,8-cineole) inhibited digestive enzymes of both bird species. Camphor and 1,8-cineole inhibited enzymes from chickens more than from sage-grouse. Extracts from both species of sagebrush had similar inhibition of chicken enzymes, but did not inhibit sage-grouse enzymes. These results suggest that specific monoterpenes may limit the protein digestibility of plant material by avian herbivores. Further, this work presents additional evidence that adaptations of digestive enzymes to plant defensive compounds may be a trait of specialist herbivores.

  11. Effects of herbivore exclusion and nutrient enrichment on coral reef macroalgae and cyanobacteria

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thacker, R.; Ginsburg, D.; Paul, V.

    2001-05-01

    Although phase shifts on coral reefs from coral-dominated to algal-dominated communities have been attributed to the effects of increased nutrient availability due to eutrophication and reduced herbivore abundance due to overfishing and disease, these factors have rarely been manipulated simultaneously. In addition, few studies have considered the effects of these factors on benthic, filamentous cyanobacteria (blue-green algae) as well as macroalgae. We used a combination of herbivore-exclusion cages and nutrient enrichment to manipulate herbivore abundance and nutrient availability, and measured the impacts of these treatments on macroalgal and cyanobacterial community structure. In the absence of cages, surface cover of the cyanobacterium Tolypothrix sp. decreased, while surface cover of the cyanobacteria Oscillatoria spp. increased. Cyanobacterial cover decreased in partial cages, and Tolypothrix sp. cover decreased further in full cages. Lower cyanobacterial cover and biomass were correlated with higher macroalgal cover and biomass. Dictyota bartayresiana dominated the partial cages, while Padina tenuis and Tolypiocladia glomerulata recruited into the full cages. Palatability assays demonstrated that herbivore-exclusion shifted macroalgal species composition from relatively unpalatable to relatively palatable species. Nutrient enrichment interacted with herbivore exclusion to increase the change in cover of D. bartayresiana in the uncaged and fully caged plots, but did not affect the final biomass of D. bartayresiana among treatments. Nutrient enrichment did not significantly affect the cover or biomass of any other taxa. These results stress the critical role of herbivory in determining coral reef community structure and suggest that the relative palatabilities of dominant algae, as well as algal growth responses to nutrient enrichment, will determine the potential for phase shifts to algal-dominated communities.

  12. 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; indeed the two were positively correlated across species in both roots and shoots. Finally, specialist root and shoot herbivores of common milkweed (A. syriaca) had opposing effects on latex production, and these effects had consequences for caterpillar growth consistent with latex providing resistance. Although cardenolides were not affected by our treatments, A. syriaca allocated 40% more cardenolides to shoots over roots. We conclude that constitutive and inducible defenses are not trading off across plant species, and shoots of Asclepias are more inducible than roots. Phylogenetic conservatism cannot explain the observed patterns of cardenolide levels across species, but inducibility per se was conserved in a tropical clade. Finally, given that above- and belowground herbivores can systemically

  13. Organismal responses to habitat change: herbivore performance, climate and leaf traits in regenerating tropical dry forests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agosta, Salvatore J; Hulshof, Catherine M; Staats, Ethan G

    2017-05-01

    The ecological effects of large-scale climate change have received much attention, but the effects of the more acute form of climate change that results from local habitat alteration have been less explored. When forest is fragmented, cut, thinned, cleared or otherwise altered in structure, local climates and microclimates change. Such changes can affect herbivores both directly (e.g. through changes in body temperature) and indirectly (e.g. through changes in host plant traits). We advance an eco-physiological framework to understand the effects of changing forests on herbivorous insects. We hypothesize that if tropical forest caterpillars are climate and resource specialists, then they should have reduced performance outside of mature forest conditions. We tested this hypothesis with a field experiment contrasting the performance of Rothschildia lebeau (Saturniidae) caterpillars feeding on the host plant Casearia nitida (Salicaceae) in two different aged and structured tropical dry forests in Area de Conservación Guanacaste, Costa Rica. Compared to more mature closed-canopy forest, in younger secondary forest we found that: (1) ambient conditions were hotter, drier and more variable; (2) caterpillar growth and development were reduced; and (3) leaves were tougher, thicker and drier. Furthermore, caterpillar growth and survival were negatively correlated with these leaf traits, suggesting indirect host-mediated effects of climate on herbivores. Based on the available evidence, and relative to mature forest, we conclude that reduced herbivore performance in young secondary forest could have been driven by changes in climate, leaf traits (which were likely climate induced) or both. However, additional studies will be needed to provide more direct evidence of cause-and-effect and to disentangle the relative influence of these factors on herbivore performance in this system. © 2017 The Authors. Journal of Animal Ecology © 2017 British Ecological Society.

  14. 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.

  15. Comparative Genomics of the Herbivore Gut Symbiont Lactobacillus reuteri Reveals Genetic Diversity and Lifestyle Adaptation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jie Yu

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available Lactobacillus reuteri is a catalase-negative, Gram-positive, non-motile, obligately heterofermentative bacterial species that has been used as a model to describe the ecology and evolution of vertebrate gut symbionts. However, the genetic features and evolutionary strategies of L. reuteri from the gastrointestinal tract of herbivores remain unknown. Therefore, 16 L. reuteri strains isolated from goat, sheep, cow, and horse in Inner Mongolia, China were sequenced in this study. A comparative genomic approach was used to assess genetic diversity and gain insight into the distinguishing features related to the different hosts based on 21 published genomic sequences. Genome size, G + C content, and average nucleotide identity values of the L. reuteri strains from different hosts indicated that the strains have broad genetic diversity. The pan-genome of 37 L. reuteri strains contained 8,680 gene families, and the core genome contained 726 gene families. A total of 92,270 nucleotide mutation sites were discovered among 37 L. reuteri strains, and all core genes displayed a Ka/Ks ratio much lower than 1, suggesting strong purifying selective pressure (negative selection. A highly robust maximum likelihood tree based on the core genes shown in the herbivore isolates were divided into three clades; clades A and B contained most of the herbivore isolates and were more closely related to human isolates and vastly distinct from clade C. Some functional genes may be attributable to host-specific of the herbivore, omnivore, and sourdough groups. Moreover, the numbers of genes encoding cell surface proteins and active carbohydrate enzymes were host-specific. This study provides new insight into the adaptation of L. reuteri to the intestinal habitat of herbivores, suggesting that the genomic diversity of L. reuteri from different ecological origins is closely associated with their living environment.

  16. Remote Sensing Forage Quality for Browsing Herbivores: A Case Study of Cutting Edge Koala Conservation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Youngentob, K. N.; Au, J.; Held, A. A.; Foley, W. J.; Possingham, H. P.

    2014-12-01

    Managing landscapes for conservation requires a capacity to measure habitat quality. Although multiple factors are often responsible for the distribution and abundance of herbivores, spatial variations in the quality and quantity of plant forage are known to be important for many species. While we cannot see the chemical complexity of landscapes with our naked-eye, advances in imaging spectroscopy are making it possible to assess the quality of forage on a landscape-scale. Much research in this area has focused on the ability to estimate foliar nitrogen (N), because N is believed to be a limiting nutrient for many leaf eating animals. However, the total quantity of foliar N does not necessarily reflect the amount of N that can be utilized by herbivores. Available nitrogen (AvailN) is an invitro measure of forage quality that integrates the influence of tannins and fibre on the amount of foliar N that is available for digestion by herbivores. This may be a more meaningful measure of forage quality than total N for the many herbivorous species that are sensitive to the effects of tannins. Our previous research has demonstrated that it is possible to estimate this integrated measure of foliar nutritional quality at an individual tree crown level across multiple tree species using imaging spectroscopy (HyMap). Here we present a case study of how this remote sensing data is being used to help inform landscape management and conservation decisions for an iconic Australian species, the koala (Phascolarctos cinereus). We review the methods involved in developing maps of integrated measures of foliar nutritional quality for browsing herbivores with airborne imaging spectroscopy data and discuss their applications for wildlife management.

  17. 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.

  18. Freeze-tolerance of Trichinella muscle larvae in experimentally infected wild boars.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lacour, Sandrine A; Heckmann, Aurélie; Macé, Pauline; Grasset-Chevillot, Aurélie; Zanella, Gina; Vallée, Isabelle; Kapel, Christian M O; Boireau, Pascal

    2013-05-20

    Freeze-tolerance of encapsulated Trichinella muscle larvae (ML) is mainly determined by Trichinella species, but is also influenced by host species, the age of the infection and the storage time and temperature of the infected meat. Moreover, the freeze-tolerance of the encapsulated species appears to be correlated to the development of thick capsule walls which increases with age. An extended infection period and the muscle composition in some hosts (e.g. herbivores) may provide freeze-avoiding matrices due to high carbohydrate contents. The present experiment compares freeze-tolerance of Trichinella spiralis and Trichinella britovi ML in wild boar meat 24 weeks post inoculation (wpi). Three groups of four wild boars were infected with 200, 2000 or 20,000 ML of T. britovi (ISS 1575), respectively. Additionally, three wild boars were inoculated with 20,000 ML of T. spiralis (ISS 004) and two animals served as negative controls. All wild boars were sacrificed 24 wpi. Muscle samples of 70 g were stored at -21°C for 19, 30 and 56 h, and for 1-8 weeks. Larvae were recovered by artificial digestion. Their mobilities were recorded using Saisam(®) image analysis software and their infectivities were evaluated using mouse bioassays. Samples frozen for 19, 30 and 56 h allowed recovery of mobile ML, but samples frozen for 1 or 2 weeks did not. Correspondingly, only T. spiralis and T. britovi larvae isolated from wild boar meat frozen for 19, 30 and 56 h established in mice. This study showed that freezing at -21°C for 1 week inactivated T. spiralis and T. britovi ML encapsulated in wild boar meat for 24 weeks. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. The African Elephant as a Game Ranch Animal

    OpenAIRE

    G. de Graaff

    1992-01-01

    The Wildlife Group of the South African Veterinary Association (SAVA) was constituted in the beginning of the 1970s by a number of persons interested in theoretical and practical aspects of wildlife {sensu lato), wildlife diseases, and the handling of game and wild animals {^ensit stricto}.

  2. The African Elephant as a Game Ranch Animal

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. de Graaff

    1992-09-01

    Full Text Available The Wildlife Group of the South African Veterinary Association (SAVA was constituted in the beginning of the 1970s by a number of persons interested in theoretical and practical aspects of wildlife {sensu lato, wildlife diseases, and the handling of game and wild animals {^ensit stricto}.

  3. Changing Attitudes among South African Prisoners of War towards ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Karen Horn

    and other first-hand accounts of South African POW experience, including diaries and memoirs. ... Kent Fedorowich, Barbara Hately-Broad, Arieh J. Kochavi, S.P. Mackenzie ... Afrikaners volunteered, the majority of them did so mostly for financial reasons ..... at Tuturano camp as an event that “sent prisoners wild with joy.”45.

  4. Survey of gastrointestinal parasite infection in African lion ( Panthera ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Little is known about gastrointestinal parasite infections in large carnivores in Africa and what is available is largely from East Africa. We collected faecal samples from nine spotted hyaenas (Crocuta crocuta), 15 lions (Panthera leo) and 13 African wild dog (Lycaon pictus) from Luangwa Valley, Zambia. The most common ...

  5. Reproductive characterization of three species of Giant African land ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Administrator

    2011-09-05

    Sep 5, 2011 ... wild lay eggs about two to three times per season. (Cobbinah et al., 2008). ... courtship and copulatory duration of three (3) species of. Giant African land ... digital stop watch and the snails were observed from 6.00 pm to. 7.00 am daily ..... trail following in apple snail, Pomacea canaliculata. J. Mollusc stud.

  6. 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.

  7. Population Genomics of sub-saharan Drosophila melanogaster: African diversity and non-African admixture.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John E Pool

    Full Text Available Drosophila melanogaster has played a pivotal role in the development of modern population genetics. However, many basic questions regarding the demographic and adaptive history of this species remain unresolved. We report the genome sequencing of 139 wild-derived strains of D. melanogaster, representing 22 population samples from the sub-Saharan ancestral range of this species, along with one European population. Most genomes were sequenced above 25X depth from haploid embryos. Results indicated a pervasive influence of non-African admixture in many African populations, motivating the development and application of a novel admixture detection method. Admixture proportions varied among populations, with greater admixture in urban locations. Admixture levels also varied across the genome, with localized peaks and valleys suggestive of a non-neutral introgression process. Genomes from the same location differed starkly in ancestry, suggesting that isolation mechanisms may exist within African populations. After removing putatively admixed genomic segments, the greatest genetic diversity was observed in southern Africa (e.g. Zambia, while diversity in other populations was largely consistent with a geographic expansion from this potentially ancestral region. The European population showed different levels of diversity reduction on each chromosome arm, and some African populations displayed chromosome arm-specific diversity reductions. Inversions in the European sample were associated with strong elevations in diversity across chromosome arms. Genomic scans were conducted to identify loci that may represent targets of positive selection within an African population, between African populations, and between European and African populations. A disproportionate number of candidate selective sweep regions were located near genes with varied roles in gene regulation. Outliers for Europe-Africa F(ST were found to be enriched in genomic regions of locally

  8. Population Genomics of Sub-Saharan Drosophila melanogaster: African Diversity and Non-African Admixture

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pool, John E.; Corbett-Detig, Russell B.; Sugino, Ryuichi P.; Stevens, Kristian A.; Cardeno, Charis M.; Crepeau, Marc W.; Duchen, Pablo; Emerson, J. J.; Saelao, Perot; Begun, David J.; Langley, Charles H.

    2012-01-01

    Drosophila melanogaster has played a pivotal role in the development of modern population genetics. However, many basic questions regarding the demographic and adaptive history of this species remain unresolved. We report the genome sequencing of 139 wild-derived strains of D. melanogaster, representing 22 population samples from the sub-Saharan ancestral range of this species, along with one European population. Most genomes were sequenced above 25X depth from haploid embryos. Results indicated a pervasive influence of non-African admixture in many African populations, motivating the development and application of a novel admixture detection method. Admixture proportions varied among populations, with greater admixture in urban locations. Admixture levels also varied across the genome, with localized peaks and valleys suggestive of a non-neutral introgression process. Genomes from the same location differed starkly in ancestry, suggesting that isolation mechanisms may exist within African populations. After removing putatively admixed genomic segments, the greatest genetic diversity was observed in southern Africa (e.g. Zambia), while diversity in other populations was largely consistent with a geographic expansion from this potentially ancestral region. The European population showed different levels of diversity reduction on each chromosome arm, and some African populations displayed chromosome arm-specific diversity reductions. Inversions in the European sample were associated with strong elevations in diversity across chromosome arms. Genomic scans were conducted to identify loci that may represent targets of positive selection within an African population, between African populations, and between European and African populations. A disproportionate number of candidate selective sweep regions were located near genes with varied roles in gene regulation. Outliers for Europe-Africa FST were found to be enriched in genomic regions of locally elevated cosmopolitan

  9. The wild tapered block bootstrap

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hounyo, Ulrich

    In this paper, a new resampling procedure, called the wild tapered block bootstrap, is introduced as a means of calculating standard errors of estimators and constructing confidence regions for parameters based on dependent heterogeneous data. The method consists in tapering each overlapping block...... of the series first, the applying the standard wild bootstrap for independent and heteroscedastic distrbuted observations to overlapping tapered blocks in an appropriate way. Its perserves the favorable bias and mean squared error properties of the tapered block bootstrap, which is the state-of-the-art block......-order asymptotic validity of the tapered block bootstrap as well as the wild tapered block bootstrap approximation to the actual distribution of the sample mean is also established when data are assumed to satisfy a near epoch dependent condition. The consistency of the bootstrap variance estimator for the sample...

  10. 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

  11. 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

  12. Wild mountains, wild rivers: Keeping the sacred origins

    Science.gov (United States)

    Linda Moon Stumpff

    2007-01-01

    For many indigenous peoples in North America, wild mountains and rivers and other natural formations exist as physical beings formed as part of a whole by forces that interconnect people with them. This perspective frames a discussion around an idea that expresses time and space as wrapped up in the mountain. If time is within the being of place and space within the...

  13. Wild western lowland gorillas signal selectively using odor.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michelle Klailova

    Full Text Available Mammals communicate socially through visual, auditory and chemical signals. The chemical sense is the oldest sense and is shared by all organisms including bacteria. Despite mounting evidence for social chemo-signaling in humans, the extent to which it modulates behavior is debated and can benefit from comparative models of closely related hominoids. The use of odor cues in wild ape social communication has been only rarely explored. Apart from one study on wild chimpanzee sniffing, our understanding is limited to anecdotes. We present the first study of wild gorilla chemo-communication and the first analysis of olfactory signaling in relation to arousal levels and odor strength in wild apes. If gorilla scent is used as a signaling mechanism instead of only a sign of arousal or stress, odor emission should be context specific and capable of variation as a function of the relationships between the emitter and perceiver(s. Measured through a human pungency scale, we determined the factors that predicted extreme levels of silverback odor for one wild western lowland gorilla (Gorilla gorilla gorilla group silverback. Extreme silverback odor was predicted by the presence and intensity of inter-unit interactions, silverback anger, distress and long-calling auditory rates, and the absence of close proximity between the silverback and mother of the youngest infant. Odor strength also varied according to the focal silverback's strategic responses during high intensity inter-unit interactions. Silverbacks appear to use odor as a modifiable form of communication; where odor acts as a highly flexible, context dependent signaling mechanism to group members and extra-group units. The importance of olfaction to ape social communication may be especially pertinent in Central African forests where limited visibility may necessitate increased reliance on other senses.

  14. Heart Disease and African Americans

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Minority Population Profiles > Black/African American > Heart Disease Heart Disease and African Americans Although African American adults are ... were 30 percent more likely to die from heart disease than non-Hispanic whites. African American women are ...

  15. 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...

  16. Fish, Benthic and Urchin Survey Data from Kahekili Herbivore Fisheries Management Area (HFMA), Maui since 2008 (NCEI Accession 0146683)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Data are summary fish, benthic and urchin data from belt transect surveys conducted by the NOAA Coral Reef Ecosystem Program within the Kahekili Herbivore Fisheries...

  17. Fish, Benthic and Urchin Survey Data from Kahekili Herbivore Fisheries Management Area (HFMA), Maui, HI since 2008 (NCEI Accession 0165015)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Data are summary fish, benthic and urchin data from belt transect surveys conducted by the NOAA Coral Reef Ecosystem Program within the Kahekili Herbivore Fisheries...

  18. Community structure of insect herbivores is driven by conservatism, escalation and divergence of defensive traits in Ficus

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Volf, M.; Segar, S. T.; Miller, S. E.; Isua, B.; Sisol, M.; Aubona, G.; Šimek, P.; Moos, M.; Laitila, J.; Kim, J.; Zima, Jan; Rota, J.; Weiblen, G. D.; Wossa, S.; Salminen, J.-P.; Basset, Y.; Novotný, V.

    2018-01-01

    Roč. 21, č. 1 (2018), s. 83-92 ISSN 1461-023X Institutional support: RVO:67985939 Keywords : alcaloids * coevolution * herbivore Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour OBOR OECD: Ecology Impact factor: 9.449, year: 2016

  19. Freeze-tolerance of Trichinella muscle larvae in experimentally infected wild boars

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lacour, Sandrine A.; Heckmann, Aurelie; Mace, Pauline

    2013-01-01

    served as negative controls. All wild boars were sacrificed 24 wpi. Muscle samples of 70 g were stored at -21 degrees C for 19,30 and 56h, and for 1-8 weeks. Larvae were recovered by artificial digestion. Their mobilities were recorded using Saisam (R) image analysis software and their infectivities were......Freeze-tolerance of encapsulated Trichinella muscle larvae (ML) is mainly determined by Trichinella species, but is also influenced by host species, the age of the infection and the storage time and temperature of the infected meat. Moreover, the freeze-tolerance of the encapsulated species appears...... to be correlated to the development of thick capsule walls which increases with age. An extended infection period and the muscle composition in some hosts (e.g. herbivores) may provide freeze-avoiding matrices due to high carbohydrate contents. The present experiment compares freeze-tolerance of Trichinella...

  20. The response of soil CO2 fluxes to progressively excluding vertebrate and invertebrate herbivores depends on ecosystem type

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anita C. Risch; Alan G. Haynes; Matt D. Busse; Flurin Filli; Martin Schütz

    2013-01-01

    Grasslands support large populations of herbivores and store up to 30% of the world’s soil carbon (C). Thus, herbivores likely play an important role in the global C cycle. However, most studies on how herbivory impacts the largest source of C released from grassland soils—soil carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions—only considered the role of large...

  1. 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

  2. The effect of fire on habitat selection of mammalian herbivores: the role of body size and vegetation characteristics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eby, Stephanie L; Anderson, T Michael; Mayemba, Emilian P; Ritchie, Mark E

    2014-09-01

    Given the role of fire in shaping ecosystems, especially grasslands and savannas, it is important to understand its broader impact on these systems. Post-fire stimulation of plant nutrients is thought to benefit grazing mammals and explain their preference for burned areas. However, fire also reduces vegetation height and increases visibility, thereby potentially reducing predation risk. Consequently, fire may be more beneficial to smaller herbivores, with higher nutritional needs and greater risks of predation. We tested the impacts of burning on different sized herbivores' habitat preference in Serengeti National Park, as mediated by burning's effects on vegetation height, live : dead biomass ratio and leaf nutrients. Burning caused a less than 4 month increase in leaf nitrogen (N), and leaf non-N nutrients [copper (Cu), potassium (K), and magnesium (Mg)] and a decrease in vegetation height and live : dead biomass. During this period, total herbivore counts were higher on burned areas. Generally, smaller herbivores preferred burned areas more strongly than larger herbivores. Unfortunately, it was not possible to determine the vegetation characteristics that explained burned area preference for each of the herbivore species observed. However, total herbivore abundance and impala (Aepyceros melampus) preference for burned areas was due to the increases in non-N nutrients caused by burning. These findings suggest that burned area attractiveness to herbivores is mainly driven by changes to forage quality and not potential decreases in predation risk caused by reductions in vegetation height. © 2014 The Authors. Journal of Animal Ecology © 2014 British Ecological Society.

  3. 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.

  4. 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).

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. Diets of giants: the nutritional value of herbivorous dinosaur diet during the Mesozoic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gill, Fiona; Hummel, Juergen; Sharifi, Reza; Lee, Alexandra; Lomax, Barry

    2017-04-01

    A major uncertainty in estimating energy budgets and population densities of extinct animals is the carrying capacity of their ecosystems, constrained by net primary productivity (NPP) and digestible energy content of that NPP. The hypothesis that increases in NPP of land plants due to elevated atmospheric CO2 contributed to the unparalleled size of the sauropods, the largest ever land animals, has recently been rejected, based on modern studies on herbivorous insects. However, the nutritional value of plants grown under elevated CO2 levels might be very different for vertebrate megaherbivores with more complex digestive systems and different protein:energy requirements than insects. Here we show that the metabolisable energy (ME) value of five species of potential dinosaur food plants does not decline consistently with increasing CO2 growth concentrations, with maxima observed at 1200 ppm CO2. Our data potentially rebut the hypothesis of constraints on herbivore diet quality in the Mesozoic due to CO2 levels.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. Direct and indirect effects of light pollution on the performance of an herbivorous insect.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grenis, Kylee; Murphy, Shannon M

    2018-02-09

    Light pollution is a global disturbance with resounding impacts on a wide variety of organisms, but our understanding of these impacts is restricted to relatively few higher vertebrate species. We tested the direct effects of light pollution on herbivore performance as well as indirect effects mediated by host plant quality. We found that artificial light from streetlights alters plant toughness. Additionally, we found evidence of both direct and indirect effects of light pollution on the performance of an herbivorous insect, which indicates that streetlights can have cascading impacts on multiple trophic levels. Our novel findings suggest that light pollution can alter plant-insect interactions and thus may have important community-wide consequences. © 2018 Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences.

  11. TB in Wild Asian Elephants

    Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Podcasts

    2017-05-10

    Dr. Susan Mikota, co-founder of Elephant Care International, discusses TB in wild Asian elephants.  Created: 5/10/2017 by National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases (NCEZID).   Date Released: 5/10/2017.

  12. Bee-Wild about Pollinators!

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Bonnie; Kil, Jenny; Evans, Elaine; Koomen, Michele Hollingsworth

    2014-01-01

    With their sunny stripes and fuzzy bodies, bees are beloved--but unfortunately, they are in trouble. Bee decline, of both wild bees as well as managed bees like honey bees, has been in the news for the last several years. Habitat loss, diseases, pests, and pesticides have made it difficult for bees to survive in many parts of our world (Walsh…

  13. Laboratory Animal Management: Wild Birds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    National Academy of Sciences - National Research Council, Washington, DC. Inst. of Lab. Animal Resources.

    This is a report on the care and use of wild birds in captivity as research animals. Chapters are presented on procurement and identification, housing, nutrition, health of birds and personnel, reproduction in confinement, and surgical procedures. Also included are addresses of federal, state, and provencial regulatory agencies concerned with wild…

  14. Wild Vietnamese relatives of blueberries

    Science.gov (United States)

    rom 25 October to 14 November 2015, wild relatives of cultivated blueberry, Vaccinium corymbosum, were collected during a Vietnamese-US cooperative expedition in Northern Vietnam. The exploration involved representatives of the Plant Resources Center, Vietnam Academy of Agricultural Sciences, in Han...

  15. Wild Maid, Wild Soul, A Wild Wild Weed: Niki de Saint Phalle’s Fierce Femininities, c. 1960-66

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amelia Jones

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Self-described as “wild maid,” “wild soul,” “a wild wild weed,” Niki de Saint Phalle narrated herself as artistic subject in a concerted way that stands out in the history of art: as both creatively driven and emotionally renegade and excessive, as both definitively woman and definitively artist. In this essay I take this special case of self-narration, and the particular power of St. Phalle’s work, as an opportunity to explore the relationship between.(auto-biography and artistic practice. The case of St. Phalle, a radical sculptor, performance artist, writer, and filmmaker, allows us to understand the exaggerated way in which women artists were until very recently forced to adopt “fierce femininities” to make a place for themselves as artists. In this way, I suggest that St. Phalle represents a key inspirational force opening the door for second wave feminism and the feminist art movement.

  16. 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.

  17. Herbivory and body size: allometries of diet quality and gastrointestinal physiology, and implications for herbivore ecology and dinosaur gigantism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clauss, Marcus; Steuer, Patrick; Müller, Dennis W H; Codron, Daryl; Hummel, Jürgen

    2013-01-01

    Digestive physiology has played a prominent role in explanations for terrestrial herbivore body size evolution and size-driven diversification and niche differentiation. This is based on the association of increasing body mass (BM) with diets of lower quality, and with putative mechanisms by which a higher BM could translate into a higher digestive efficiency. Such concepts, however, often do not match empirical data. Here, we review concepts and data on terrestrial herbivore BM, diet quality, digestive physiology and metabolism, and in doing so give examples for problems in using allometric analyses and extrapolations. A digestive advantage of larger BM is not corroborated by conceptual or empirical approaches. We suggest that explanatory models should shift from physiological to ecological scenarios based on the association of forage quality and biomass availability, and the association between BM and feeding selectivity. These associations mostly (but not exclusively) allow large herbivores to use low quality forage only, whereas they allow small herbivores the use of any forage they can physically manage. Examples of small herbivores able to subsist on lower quality diets are rare but exist. We speculate that this could be explained by evolutionary adaptations to the ecological opportunity of selective feeding in smaller animals, rather than by a physiologic or metabolic necessity linked to BM. For gigantic herbivores such as sauropod dinosaurs, other factors than digestive physiology appear more promising candidates to explain evolutionary drives towards extreme BM.

  18. Herbivory and body size: allometries of diet quality and gastrointestinal physiology, and implications for herbivore ecology and dinosaur gigantism.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcus Clauss

    Full Text Available Digestive physiology has played a prominent role in explanations for terrestrial herbivore body size evolution and size-driven diversification and niche differentiation. This is based on the association of increasing body mass (BM with diets of lower quality, and with putative mechanisms by which a higher BM could translate into a higher digestive efficiency. Such concepts, however, often do not match empirical data. Here, we review concepts and data on terrestrial herbivore BM, diet quality, digestive physiology and metabolism, and in doing so give examples for problems in using allometric analyses and extrapolations. A digestive advantage of larger BM is not corroborated by conceptual or empirical approaches. We suggest that explanatory models should shift from physiological to ecological scenarios based on the association of forage quality and biomass availability, and the association between BM and feeding selectivity. These associations mostly (but not exclusively allow large herbivores to use low quality forage only, whereas they allow small herbivores the use of any forage they can physically manage. Examples of small herbivores able to subsist on lower quality diets are rare but exist. We speculate that this could be explained by evolutionary adaptations to the ecological opportunity of selective feeding in smaller animals, rather than by a physiologic or metabolic necessity linked to BM. For gigantic herbivores such as sauropod dinosaurs, other factors than digestive physiology appear more promising candidates to explain evolutionary drives towards extreme BM.

  19. Feeding the enemy: loss of nectar and nectaries to herbivores reduces tepal damage and increases pollinator attraction in Iris bulleyana.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, Ya-Ru; Yang, Min; Vamosi, Jana C; Armbruster, W Scott; Wan, Tao; Gong, Yan-Bing

    2017-08-01

    Floral nectar usually functions as a pollinator reward, yet it may also attract herbivores. However, the effects of herbivore consumption of nectar or nectaries on pollination have rarely been tested. We investigated Iris bulleyana , an alpine plant that has showy tepals and abundant nectar, in the Hengduan Mountains of SW China. In this region, flowers are visited mainly by pollen-collecting pollinators and nectarivorous herbivores. We tested the hypothesis that, in I. bulleyana , sacrificing nectar and nectaries to herbivores protects tepals and thus enhances pollinator attraction. We compared rates of pollination and herbivory on different floral tissues in plants with flowers protected from nectar and nectary consumption with rates in unprotected control plants. We found that nectar and nectaries suffered more herbivore damage than did tepals in natural conditions. However, the amount of tepal damage was significantly greater in the flowers with protected nectaries than in the controls; this resulted in significant differences in pollinator visitation rates. These results provide the first evidence that floral nectar and nectaries may be 'sacrificed' to herbivores, leading to reduced damage to other floral tissues that are more important for reproduction. © 2017 The Author(s).

  20. 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...