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Bibliography on: Invasive Species

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ESP: PubMed Auto Bibliography 29 Feb 2024 at 01:48 Created: 

Invasive Species

Standard Definition: Invasive species are plants, animals, or pathogens that are non-native (or alien) to the ecosystem under consideration and whose introduction causes or is likely to cause harm. Although that definition allows a logical possibility that some species might be non-native and harmless, most of time it seems that invasive species and really bad critter (or weed) that should be eradicated are seen as equivalent phrases. But, there is a big conceptual problem with that notion: every species in every ecosystem started out in that ecosystem as an invader. If there were no invasive species, all of Hawaii would be nothing but bare volcanic rock. Without an invasion of species onto land, there would be no terrestrial ecosystems at all. For the entire history of life on Earth, the biosphere has responded to perturbation and to opportunity with evolutionary innovation and with physical movement. While one may raise economic or aesthetic arguments against invasive species, it is impossible to make such an argument on scientific grounds. Species movement — the occurrence of invasive species — is the way the biosphere responds to perturbation. One might even argue that species movement is the primary, short-term "healing" mechanism employed by the biosphere to respond to perturbation — to "damage." As with any healing process, the short-term effect may be aesthetically unappealing (who thinks scabs are appealing?), but the long-term effects can be glorious.

Created with PubMed® Query: ("invasive species" OR "invasion biology" OR "alien species" OR "introduced species" ) NOT pmcbook NOT ispreviousversion

Citations The Papers (from PubMed®)


RevDate: 2024-02-28

Campião KM, da Luz Rico JA, de Souza Monteiro G, et al (2024)

High prevalence and concomitant infection of Eustrongylides sp. and Ranavirus in the invasive American Bullfrog in Brazil.

Parasitology international pii:S1383-5769(24)00026-6 [Epub ahead of print].

American Bullfrogs, Aquarana catesbeiana, are invasive anuran species distributed worldwide. One of the adverse impacts that this species causes in native communities is as a reservoir host for pathogens and parasites. Here, we report the coinfection of two pathogenic organisms in L. catesbeianus: Ranavirus and the nematode Eustrongylides. Bullfrogs were collected in the wild in an pond close to the urban of São Paulo, Brazil. The prevalence of both pathogens was high: 77% were infected with ranavirus with a mean viral load of 971 b, and 100% of the bullfrogs were infected by Eustrongylides sp. with a mean intensity of infection of 14.08. Four host specimens (31%) presented pathological signs that seemed to be related to the Eustrongylides sp., such as internal organs adhered to each other due to high intensity and large size of the nematodes, ulcers, and raw flesh wounds caused by the nematode. The pathogenic and concomitant infections have potential zoonotic implications and raise concerns about human infection risks for Eustrongylides infection. Moreover, such infections may represent an additional level of threat to native communities through the potential shifts in patterns of parasite and pathogen transmission. Future research involving the native anuran community is essential to ascertain whether invasive bullfrogs are attenuating or exacerbating diseases such as ranavirosis and eustrongylidiosis.

RevDate: 2024-02-28

Heneidy SZ, Al-Sodany YM, Fakhry AM, et al (2024)

Biology of Nicotiana glutinosa L., a newly recorded species from an archaeological excavation site in Egypt.

BMC plant biology, 24(1):148.

BACKGROUND: During a field survey of urban flora in Alexandria city in 2019-2022, an interesting species belonging to the Solanaceae was collected from a newly archaeological excavation site and identified as Nicotiana glutinosa L. Many visits were made to the herbaria of Egypt to confirm the species records, but no single record was found. Reviewing the available literature revealed that this tropical American taxon was never recorded in the flora of Egypt.

AIMS: The present study was focused on N. glutinosa growth structure and plant macro- and micromorphology.

METHODS: Ten sampling sites were covered for N. glutinosa size structure. Plant samples were examined for stem anatomy, leaf, seed, and pollen morphology.

RESULTS: The species size structure reveals that the individual size index ranges from 1.33 to 150 cm, while its density ranges from 4 to 273 individuals /100 m[-2]. N. glutinosa has successfully established itself in one of the archaeological sites in Egypt, showing a "healthy" population with a high degree of size inequality, characterized by a relative majority of the juvenile individuals. Voucher specimens were deposited in the Herbarium of Alexandria University (ALEX) Faculty of Science, another specimen is processed to make herbarium specimens at the Herbarium of the Botanic Garden (Heneidy et al. collection, deposition number. 5502).

CONCLUSIONS: From our observations, N. glutinosa seems to have invasive potential, as it shows characteristics shared by most invasive species that are thought to help in their successful establishment in new habitats. This article emphasizes the importance of monitoring and regularly reporting the threats of alien invasive species to avoid any possible negative impacts on indigenous biodiversity in the future.

RevDate: 2024-02-28

Hayashi I, Fujita H, H Toju (2024)

Deterministic and stochastic processes generating alternative states of microbiomes.

ISME communications, 4(1):ycae007.

The structure of microbiomes is often classified into discrete or semi-discrete types potentially differing in community-scale functional profiles. Elucidating the mechanisms that generate such "alternative states" of microbiome compositions has been one of the major challenges in ecology and microbiology. In a time-series analysis of experimental microbiomes, we here show that both deterministic and stochastic ecological processes drive divergence of alternative microbiome states. We introduced species-rich soil-derived microbiomes into eight types of culture media with 48 replicates, monitoring shifts in community compositions at six time points (8 media × 48 replicates × 6 time points = 2304 community samples). We then confirmed that microbial community structure diverged into a few state types in each of the eight medium conditions as predicted in the presence of both deterministic and stochastic community processes. In other words, microbiome structure was differentiated into a small number of reproducible compositions under the same environment. This fact indicates not only the presence of selective forces leading to specific equilibria of community-scale resource use but also the influence of demographic drift (fluctuations) on the microbiome assembly. A reference-genome-based analysis further suggested that the observed alternative states differed in ecosystem-level functions. These findings will help us examine how microbiome structure and functions can be controlled by changing the "stability landscapes" of ecological community compositions.

RevDate: 2024-02-28

Mata JC, Davison CW, Frøslev TG, et al (2024)

Resource partitioning in a novel herbivore assemblage in South America.

The Journal of animal ecology [Epub ahead of print].

Human-induced species declines and extinctions have led to the downsizing of large-herbivore assemblages, with implications for many ecosystem processes. Active reintroduction of extirpated large herbivores or their functional equivalents may help to reverse this trend and restore diverse ecosystems and their processes. However, it is unclear whether resource competition between native and non-native herbivores could threaten restoration initiatives, or to what extent (re)introduced species may influence local vegetation dynamics. To answer these questions, we investigated the diets of a novel South American herbivore assemblage that includes resident native species, reintroduced native species and introduced non-native species. We examined plant composition, diet breadth and the overlap between species to describe the local herbivory profile and the potential for resource competition. Using DNA metabarcoding on faecal samples (n = 465), we analysed the diets of the herbivore assemblage in the Rincón del Socorro rewilding area of Iberá National Park, Argentina. We compared the species richness of faecal samples, the occurrence of plant families/growth forms and the compositional similarity of samples (inter- and intraspecifically). Our results indicate species-level taxonomic partitioning of plant resources by herbivores in this system. Differences in sample richness, composition and diet breadth reflected a diverse range of herbivory strategies, from grazers (capybara) to mixed feeders/browsers (brocket deer, lowland tapir). Differences in diet compositional similarity (Jaccard) revealed strong taxonomic resource partitioning. The two herbivores with the most similar diets (Pampas deer and brocket deer) still differed by more than 80%. Furthermore, all but one species (axis deer) had more similar diet composition intraspecifically than compared to the others. Overall, we found little evidence for resource competition between herbivore species. Instead, recently reintroduced native species and historically introduced non-natives are likely expanding the range of herbivory dynamics in the ecosystem. Further research will be needed to determine the full ecological impacts of these (re)introduced herbivores. In conclusion, we show clear differences in diet breadth and composition among native, reintroduced and non-native herbivore species that may be key to promoting resource partitioning, species coexistence and the restoration of ecological function.

RevDate: 2024-02-27

Li S, Wei H, GH Copp (2024)

Research advances in diversity and conservation science of freshwater fish in China.

Journal of fish biology, 104(2):343-344.

RevDate: 2024-02-27

Hoenle PO, Plowman NS, Matos-Maraví P, et al (2024)

Forest disturbance increases functional diversity but decreases phylogenetic diversity of an arboreal tropical ant community.

The Journal of animal ecology [Epub ahead of print].

Tropical rainforest trees host a diverse arthropod fauna that can be characterised by their functional diversity (FD) and phylogenetic diversity (PD). Human disturbance degrades tropical forests, often coinciding with species invasion and altered assembly that leads to a decrease in FD and PD. Tree canopies are thought to be particularly vulnerable, but rarely investigated. Here, we studied the effects of forest disturbance on an ecologically important invertebrate group, the ants, in a lowland rainforest in New Guinea. We compared an early successional disturbed plot (secondary forest) to an old-growth plot (primary forest) by exhaustively sampling their ant communities in a total of 852 trees. We expected that for each tree community (1) disturbance would decrease FD and PD in tree-dwelling ants, mediated through species invasion. (2) Disturbance would decrease ant trait variation due to a more homogeneous environment. (3) The main drivers behind these changes would be different contributions of true tree-nesting species and visiting species. We calculated FD and PD based on a species-level phylogeny and 10 ecomorphological traits. Furthermore, we assessed by data exclusion the influence of species, which were not nesting in individual trees (visitors) or only nesting species (nesters), and of non-native species on FD and PD. Primary forests had higher ant species richness and PD than secondary forest. However, we consistently found increased FD in secondary forest. This pattern was robust even if we decoupled functional and phylogenetic signals, or if non-native ant species were excluded from the data. Visitors did not contribute strongly to FD, but they increased PD and their community weighted trait means often varied from nesters. Moreover, all community-weighted trait means changed after forest disturbance. Our finding of contradictory FD and PD patterns highlights the importance of integrative measures of diversity. Our results indicate that the tree community trait diversity is not negatively affected, but possibly even enhanced by disturbance. Therefore, the functional diversity of arboreal ants is relatively robust when compared between old-growth and young trees. However, further study with higher plot-replication is necessary to solidify and generalise our findings.

RevDate: 2024-02-26

Jarvis-Lowry B, Harrington KC, Ghanizadeh H, et al (2024)

Viability and dormancy of the Clematis vitalba aerial seed bank.

Plant biology (Stuttgart, Germany) [Epub ahead of print].

Old man's beard (Clematis vitalba L.) is a liana species that has become invasive in many areas of its introduced range. Seeds are produced in abundance and are both physiologically and morphologically dormant upon maturity. To understand the importance of seeds to its invasiveness, changes in viability and dormancy of the aerial seed bank were tracked throughout the after-ripening period and during storage. Seeds collected every second month for 2 years were subjected to germination tests. Other seeds stored in outdoor ambient conditions or in a dry, chilled state were dissected before, during, and after imbibition, as well as during incubation, to measure embryo size. Less than 72% of seeds on the mother plant were viable. Viable seeds remained completely morpho-physiologically dormant throughout autumn, even when treated with nitrate. Physiological dormancy declined in response to seasonal changes, yet morphological dormancy did not change until seeds had been exposed to appropriate germination conditions for several days. Fully dormant autumn seeds decayed at higher rates during incubation than partially or fully after-ripened seeds, which were also more germinable and less dormant. Furthermore, seeds incubated in complete darkness were more likely to decay or remain dormant than those exposed to light. This study demonstrates that fewer than three-quarters of seeds produced are viable and further decay occurs after dispersal, yet total fertility is still very high, with enormous propagule pressure from seeds alone. Viable seeds are protected with two forms of dormancy; morphological dormancy requires additional germination cues in order to break after seasonal changes break physiological dormancy.

RevDate: 2024-02-26

Doğdu SA, C Turan (2024)

Biological and growth parameters of Plotosus lineatus in the Mediterranean Sea.

PeerJ, 12:e16945.

This study examined the age distribution and growth characteristics of the striped eel catfish (Plotosus lineatus), which is an invasive alien species in the eastern Mediterranean. A total of 1,011 samples were collected from Iskenderun Bay (Turkey), with lengths ranging from 5.1 to 16.8 cm, predominantly comprising females (1:1.92). Age 3 represented the majority in the population (52.03%). The value of the scaling exponent "b" of the length-weight relationship was less than "3" for both sexes (females: 2.28; males: 2.26; combined: 2.27). The results for the von Bertalanffy growth parameters were observed for the combined sexes as, L∞ = 24.9934 cm, k = 0.1718 year[-1], and t0 = -1.7707 years. The striped eel catfish populations in Iskenderun Bay exhibited negative allometric growth patterns and were predominantly composed of adult individuals. This study presents the dataset on the length-weight correlations, age-growth characteristics, and von Bertalanffy growth parameters of Plotosus lineatus in the Mediterranean Sea, thereby significantly contributing to comprehending the stock dynamics. It is anticipated that this study will make a significant contribution to the management of P. lineatus stocks, given its invasive nature.

RevDate: 2024-02-26

Goel N, Liebhold AM, Bertelsmeier C, et al (2024)

A mechanistic statistical approach to infer invasion characteristics of human-dispersed species with complex life cycle.

bioRxiv : the preprint server for biology pii:2024.02.09.578762.

The rising introduction of invasive species through trade networks threatens biodiversity and ecosystem services. Yet, we have a limited understanding of how transportation networks determine patterns of range expansion. This is partly because current analytical models fail to integrate the invader's life-history dynamics with heterogeneity in human-mediated dispersal patterns. And partly because classical statistical methods often fail to provide reliable estimates of model parameters due to spatial biases in the presence-only records and lack of informative demographic data. To address these gaps, we first formulate an age-structured metapopulation model that uses a probability matrix to emulate human-mediated dispersal patterns. The model reveals that an invader spreads along the shortest network path, such that the inter-patch network distances decrease with increasing traffic volume and reproductive value of hitchhikers. Next, we propose a Bayesian statistical method to estimate model parameters using presence-only data and prior demographic knowledge. To show the utility of the statistical approach, we analyze zebra mussel (Dreissena polymorpha) expansion in North America through the commercial shipping network. Our analysis underscores the importance of correcting spatial biases and leveraging priors to answer questions, such as where and when the zebra mussels were introduced and what life-history characteristics make these mollusks successful invaders.

RevDate: 2024-02-26
CmpDate: 2024-02-26

Li Y, Hua J, Tao Y, et al (2024)

Invasion mechanism of Spartina alterniflora by regulating soil sulfur and iron cycling and microbial composition in the Jiuduansha Wetland.

Environmental science and pollution research international, 31(10):14775-14790.

Spartina alterniflora, an invasive plant widely distributed in China's coastal regions, has had a significant impact on the stability of wetland ecosystems and elemental biogeochemical cycles. The invasion of S. alterniflora has been found to lead to the accumulation of sulfides in the soil. The cycling of sulfur and iron in the soil is closely interconnected. Coastal estuarine wetlands are influenced by both freshwater in rivers and seawater tides, as well as the frequent variations in redox conditions caused by tidal fluctuations, which makes the cycling of sulfur and iron in the soil invaded by S. alterniflora more intricate. In this study, field surveys and laboratory experiments were conducted to explore the effects of S. alterniflora invasion and hydrological changes on the cycling of sulfur and iron as well as related functional microorganisms in the soil. The invasion of S. alterniflora showed an increase in soil reduced inorganic sulfur (RIS) components in both high and low marshes of Jiuduansha wetland, with higher content observed in summer and autumn. The tidal simulation experiments revealed abundant sulfate in seawater tidal conditions could promote the formation of acid volatile sulfides (AVS) in the soil of low marshes invaded by S. alterniflora and ensuring the continuous increase in AVS content. Diffusive gradients in-thin-films (DGT) technology indicated the existence of high-concentration soluble S[2-] enrichment zones in the soil of low marshes invaded by S. alterniflora, which may be related to S. alterniflora root exudates. Tidal action increased the relative abundance of sulfur-reducing bacteria (SRB) in the soil of low marshes, and under the influence of seawater tidal action, SRB exhibited higher relative abundance. However, S. alterniflora might inhibit the activity of iron-reducing bacteria (FeRB) in the soil of low marshes. In conclusion, S. alterniflora may enhance the sulfate reduction rate and promote the formation of free sulfides in tidal salt marsh ecosystems by releasing root exudates that stimulate the activity of SRB, while concurrently inhibiting the activity of FeRB and reducing their competition with SRB. This effect is particularly pronounced in low marshes under seawater tidal conditions. Thus, S. alterniflora is capable of rapidly invading tidal salt marshes by utilizing sulfides effectively.

RevDate: 2024-02-26
CmpDate: 2024-02-26

He L, Xu Y, Yang Z, et al (2024)

Copper-decorated strategy based on defect-rich NH2-MIL-125(Ti) boosts efficient photocatalytic degradation of methyl mercaptan under sunlight.

Environmental pollution (Barking, Essex : 1987), 344:123341.

Photocatalysis has received significant attention as a technology that can solve environmental problems. Metal-organic frameworks are currently being used as novel photocatalysts but are still limited by the rapid recombination of photogenerated carriers, low photogenerated electron migration efficiency and poor solar light utilization rate. In this work, a novel photocatalyst was successfully constructed by introducing Cu species into thermal activated mixed-ligand NH2-MIL-125 (Ti) via defect engineering strategy. The constructed defect structure not only provided 3D-interconnected gas transfer channels, but also offered suitable space to accommodate introduced Cu species. For the most effective photocatalyst 0.2Cu/80%NH2-MIL-125 (300 °C) with optimized Cu content, the photocatalytic degradation rate of CH3SH achieved 4.65 times higher than that of pristine NH2-MIL-125 under visible light (λ > 420 nm). At the same time, it showed great degradation efficiency under natural sunlight, 100 ppm CH3SH was completely removed within 25 min in full solar light illumination. The improved catalytic efficiency is mainly due to the synergistic effect of the integrated Schottky junction and rich-defective NH2-MIL-125, which improved the bandgap and band position, and thus facilitated the separation and transfer of the photo-generated carriers. This work provided a facile way to integrate Schottky junctions and rich-defective MOFs with high stability. Due to its excellent degradation performance under sunlight, it also offered a prospective strategy for rational design of high-efficiency catalysts applied in environmental technologies.

RevDate: 2024-02-24

Hilliam K, Floerl O, EA Treml (2024)

Priorities for improving predictions of vessel-mediated marine invasions.

The Science of the total environment pii:S0048-9697(24)01301-9 [Epub ahead of print].

Nonindigenous marine species are impacting the integrity of marine ecosystems worldwide. The invasion rate is increasing, and vessel traffic, the most significant human-assisted transport pathway for marine organisms, is predicted to double by 2050. The ability to predict the transfer of marine species by international and domestic maritime traffic is needed to develop cost-effective proactive and reactive interventions that minimise introduction, establishment and spread of invasive species. However, despite several decades of research into vessel-mediated species transfers, some important knowledge gaps remain, leading to significant uncertainty in model predictions, often limiting their use in decision making and management planning. In this review, we discuss the sequential ecological process underlying human-assisted biological invasions and adapt it in a marine context. This process includes five successive stages: entrainment, transport, introduction, establishment, and the subsequent spread. We describe the factors that influence an organism's progression through these stages in the context of maritime vessel movements and identify key knowledge gaps that limit our ability to quantify the rate at which organisms successfully pass through these stages. We then highlight research priorities that will address these knowledge gaps and improve our capability to manage biosecurity risks at local, national and international scales. We identified four major data and knowledge gaps: (1) quantitative rates of entrainment of organisms by vessels; (2) the movement patterns of vessel types lacking maritime location devices; (3) quantifying the release (introduction) of organisms as a function of vessel behaviour (e.g. time spent at port); and (4) the influence of a species' life history on establishment success, for a given magnitude of propagule pressure. We discuss these four research priorities and how they can be addressed in collaboration with industry partners and stakeholders to improve our ability to predict and manage vessel-mediated biosecurity risks over the coming decades.

RevDate: 2024-02-24

Jansen S, Höller P, Helms M, et al (2024)

Mosquitoes from Europe Are Able to Transmit Snowshoe Hare Virus.

Viruses, 16(2): pii:v16020222.

Snowshoe hare virus (SSHV) is a zoonotic arthropod-borne virus (arbovirus) circulating in colder areas of the Northern Hemisphere. SSHV is maintained in an enzootic cycle between small mammals and mosquitoes, assumably of the genera Aedes and Culiseta. Symptoms of SSHV human infection can range from asymptomatic to severe neuroinvasive disease. Studies on SSHV transmission are limited, and there is no information available on whether mosquitoes of the genus Culex are able to transmit SSHV. Therefore, we investigated six mosquito species via salivation assay for their vector competence. We demonstrated that SSHV can be transmitted by the abundant European Culex species Cx. pipiens biotype pipiens, Cx. pipiens biotype molestus, and Cx. torrentium with low transmission efficiency between 3.33% and 6.67%. Additionally, the invasive species Ae. albopictus can also transmit SSHV with a low transmission efficiency of 3.33%. Our results suggest that local transmission of SSHV after introduction to Europe seems to be possible from a vector perspective.

RevDate: 2024-02-24

Migaou M, Macé S, Maalej H, et al (2024)

Exploring the Exopolysaccharide Production Potential of Bacterial Strains Isolated from Tunisian Blue Crab Portunus segnis Microbiota.

Molecules (Basel, Switzerland), 29(4): pii:molecules29040774.

The blue crab (BC) Portunus segnis is considered an invasive species colonizing Tunisian coasts since 2014. This work aims to explore its associated bacteria potential to produce anionic exopolysaccharides (EPSs) in order to open up new ways of valorization. In this study, different BC samples were collected from the coastal area of Sfax, Tunisia. First, bacterial DNA was extracted from seven different fractions (flesh, gills, viscera, carapace scraping water, and three wastewaters from the production plant) and then sequenced using the metabarcoding approach targeting the V3-V4 region of the 16S rDNA to describe their microbiota composition. Metabarcoding data showed that the dominant bacterial genera were mainly Psychrobacter, Vagococcus, and Vibrio. In parallel, plate counting assays were performed on different culture media, and about 250 bacterial strains were isolated and identified by sequencing the 16S rDNA. EPS production by this new bacterial diversity was assessed to identify new compounds of biotechnological interest. The identification of the bacterial strains in the collection confirmed the dominance of Psychrobacter spp. strains. Among them, 43 were identified as EPS producers, as revealed by Stains-all dye in agarose gel electrophoresis. A Buttiauxella strain produced an EPS rich in both neutral sugars including rare sugars such as rhamnose and fucose and uronic acids. This original composition allows us to assume its potential for biotechnological applications and, more particularly, for developing innovative therapeutics. This study highlights bacterial strains associated with BC; they are a new untapped source for discovering innovative bioactive compounds for health and cosmetic applications, such as anionic EPS.

RevDate: 2024-02-24

Wang YL, Li L, Paudel BR, et al (2024)

Genomic Insights into High-Altitude Adaptation: A Comparative Analysis of Roscoea alpina and R. purpurea in the Himalayas.

International journal of molecular sciences, 25(4): pii:ijms25042265.

Environmental stress at high altitudes drives the development of distinct adaptive mechanisms in plants. However, studies exploring the genetic adaptive mechanisms of high-altitude plant species are scarce. In the present study, we explored the high-altitude adaptive mechanisms of plants in the Himalayas through whole-genome resequencing. We studied two widespread members of the Himalayan endemic alpine genus Roscoea (Zingiberaceae): R. alpina (a selfing species) and R. purpurea (an outcrossing species). These species are distributed widely in the Himalayas with distinct non-overlapping altitude distributions; R. alpina is distributed at higher elevations, and R. purpurea occurs at lower elevations. Compared to R. purpurea, R. alpina exhibited higher levels of linkage disequilibrium, Tajima's D, and inbreeding coefficient, as well as lower recombination rates and genetic diversity. Approximately 96.3% of the genes in the reference genome underwent significant genetic divergence (FST ≥ 0.25). We reported 58 completely divergent genes (FST = 1), of which only 17 genes were annotated with specific functions. The functions of these genes were primarily related to adapting to the specific characteristics of high-altitude environments. Our findings provide novel insights into how evolutionary innovations promote the adaptation of mountain alpine species to high altitudes and harsh habitats.

RevDate: 2024-02-23

Amer NR, Stoks R, Antoł A, et al (2024)

Microgeographic differentiation in thermal and antipredator responses and their carry-over effects across life stages in a damselfly.

PloS one, 19(2):e0295707 pii:PONE-D-23-24816.

Global warming and invasive species, separately or combined, can impose a large impact on the condition of native species. However, we know relatively little about how these two factors, individually and in combination, shape phenotypes in ectotherms across life stages and how this can differ between populations. We investigated the non-consumptive predator effects (NCEs) imposed by native (perch) and invasive (signal crayfish) predators experienced only during the egg stage or during both the egg and larval stages in combination with warming on adult life history traits of the damselfly Ischnura elegans. To explore microgeographic differentiation, we compared two nearby populations differing in thermal conditions and predator history. In the absence of predator cues, warming positively affected damselfly survival, possibly because the warmer temperature was closer to the optimal temperature. In the presence of predator cues, warming decreased survival, indicating a synergistic effect of these two variables on survival. In one population, predator cues from perch led to increased survival, especially under the current temperature, likely because of predator stress acclimation phenomena. While warming decreased, predator cues increased larval development time with a proportionally stronger effect of signal crayfish cues experienced during the egg stage, indicating a negative carry-over effect from egg to larva. Warming and predator cues increased mass at emergence, with the predator effect driven mainly by exposure to signal crayfish cues during the egg stage, indicating a positive carry-over effect from egg to adult. Notably, warming and predator effects were not consistent across the two studied populations, suggesting a phenotypic signal of adaptation at a microgeographic scale to thermal conditions and predator history. We also observed pronounced shifts during ontogeny from synergistic (egg and early larval stage) toward additive (late larval stage up to emergence) effects between warming and predator stress. The results point out that population- and life-stage-specific responses in life-history traits to NCEs are needed to predict fitness consequences of exposure to native and invasive predators and warming in prey at a microgeographic scale.

RevDate: 2024-02-23

Heddergott M, Pikalo J, Müller F, et al (2024)

Prevalence of Toxoplasma gondii in Wild American Mink (Neogale vison): The First Serological Study in Germany and Poland.

Pathogens (Basel, Switzerland), 13(2): pii:pathogens13020153.

Toxoplasma gondii is an obligate intracellular protozoan that causes toxoplasmosis in warm-blooded animals. Although most infections in humans and animals are subclinical, an infection can nevertheless be fatal. One of the important characteristics in the epidemiology of this parasite is waterborne transmission. The American mink (Neogale vison), a mammal closely adapted to freshwater ecosystems, is a potential sentinel for T. gondii. We analysed meat juice from the heart of 194 wild minks collected between 2019 and 2022 in five study areas from Germany and Poland and tested for the presence of antibodies against T. gondii. The analysis was performed using a commercial enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay test (ELISA). Antibodies were detected in 45.36% (88/194, 95% confidence interval (CI): 38.39-52.41%) of the analysed animals. While the prevalence values ranged from 37.50% to 49.30%, there was no significant difference in seroprevalence between the study areas. Juveniles were less likely to carry T. gondii antibodies than adults (odds ratio: 0.216), whereas there was no significant difference in prevalence between the sexes (odds ratio: 0.933). The results of our study show that contact with T. gondii is widespread in minks, and the parasite is common in inland freshwater ecosystems in Germany and Poland. This indicates that watercourses play an important role in the spread of T. gondii oocysts.

RevDate: 2024-02-23

Zhao Q, Li H, Chen C, et al (2024)

Potential Global Distribution of Paracoccus marginatus, under Climate Change Conditions, Using MaxEnt.

Insects, 15(2): pii:insects15020098.

The papaya mealybug, Paracoccus marginatus, is an invasive pest species found all over the world. It is native to Mexico and Central America, but is now present in more than 50 countries and regions, seriously threatening the economic viability of the agricultural and forestry industry. In the current study, the global potential distribution of P. marginatus was predicted under current and future climatic conditions using MaxEnt. The results of the model assessment indicated that the area under the curve of the receiver operating characteristic (ROC-AUC) was 0.949, while the TSS value was 0.820. The results also showed that the three variables with the greatest impact on the model were min temperature of coldest month (bio6), precipitation of wettest month (bio13), and precipitation of coldest quarter (bio19), with corresponding contributions of 46.8%, 31.1%, and 13.1%, respectively. The results indicated that the highly suitable areas were mainly located in tropical and subtropical regions, including South America, southern North America, Central America, Central Africa, Australia, the Indian subcontinent, and Southeast Asia. Under four climate scenarios in the 2050s and 2070s, the area of suitability will change very little. Moreover, the results showed that the area of suitable areas in 2070s increased under all four climate scenarios compared to the current climate. In contrast, the area of suitable habitat increases from the current to the 2050s under the SSP370 and SSP585 climate scenarios. The current study could provide a reference framework for the future control and management of papaya mealybug and other invasive species.

RevDate: 2024-02-23

Ma Z, Fu J, Zhang Y, et al (2024)

Toxicity and Behavior-Altering Effects of Three Nanomaterials on Red Imported Fire Ants and Their Effectiveness in Combination with Indoxacarb.

Insects, 15(2): pii:insects15020096.

The red imported fire ant (Solenopsis invicta Buren) is one of the 100 worst invasive alien species in the world. At present, the control of red imported fire ants is still mainly based on chemical control, and the most commonly used is indoxacarb bait. In this study, the contact and feeding toxicity of 16 kinds of nanomaterials to workers, larvae, and reproductive ants were evaluated after 24 h, 48 h, and 72 h. The results showed that the mortality of diatomite, Silica (raspberry-shaped), and multi-walled carbon nanotubes among workers reached 98.67%, 97.33%, and 68%, respectively, after contact treatment of 72 h. The mortality of both larval and reproductive ants was less than 20% after 72 h of treatment. All mortality rates in the fed treatment group were below 20% after 72 h. Subsequently, we evaluated the digging, corpse-removal, and foraging behaviors of workers after feeding with diatomite, Silica (raspberry-shaped), and multi-walled carbon nanotubes for 24 h, which yielded inhibitory effects on the behavior of red imported fire ants. The most effective was diatomite, which dramatically decreased the number of workers that dug, extended the time needed for worker ant corpse removal and foraging activities, decreased the number of workers that foraged, and decreased the weight of the food carried by the workers. In addition, we also evaluated the contact and feeding toxicity of these three nanomaterials in combination with indoxacarb on red imported fire ants. According to contact toxicity, after 12 h of contact treatment, the death rate among the red imported fire ants exposed to the three materials combined with indoxacarb reached more than 97%. After 72 h of exposure treatment, the mortality rate of larvae was more than 73% when the nanomaterial content was above 1% and 83% when the diatomite content was 0.5%, which was significantly higher than the 50% recorded in the indoxacarb control group. After 72 h of feeding treatment, the mortality of diatomite, Silica (raspberry-shaped), and multi-walled carbon nanotubes combined with indoxacarb reached 92%, 87%, and 98%, respectively. The death rates of the three kinds of composite ants reached 97%, 67%, and 87%, respectively. The three kinds of composite food had significant inhibitory effects on the behavior of workers, and the trend was largely consistent with the effect of nanomaterials alone. This study provides technical support for the application of nanomaterials in red imported fire ant control.

RevDate: 2024-02-23

Wang Y, Zhao Y, Zhang J, et al (2024)

Heat Shock Protein Genes Affect the Rapid Cold Hardening Ability of Two Invasive Tephritids.

Insects, 15(2): pii:insects15020090.

Bactrocera dorsalis and Bactrocera correcta are two invasive species that can cause major economic damage to orchards and the fruit import and export industries. Their distribution is advancing northward due to climate change, which is threatening greater impacts on fruit production. This study tested the rapid cold-hardening ability of the two species and identified the temperature associated with the highest survival rate. Transcriptome data and survival data from the two Bactrocera species' larvae were obtained after rapid cold-hardening experiments. Based on the sequencing of transcripts, four Hsp genes were found to be affected: Hsp68 and Hsp70, which play more important roles in the rapid cold hardening of B. dorsalis, and Hsp23 and Hsp70, which play more important roles in the rapid cold hardening of B. correcta. This study explored the adaptability of the two species to cold, demonstrated the expression and function of four Hsps in response to rapid cold hardening, and explained the occurrence and expansion of these two species of tephritids, offering information for further studies.

RevDate: 2024-02-23

Kumschick S, Fernandez Winzer L, McCulloch-Jones EJ, et al (2024)

Considerations for developing and implementing a safe list for alien taxa.

Bioscience, 74(2):97-108 pii:biad118.

Many species have been intentionally introduced to new regions for their benefits. Some of these alien species cause damage, others do not (or at least have not yet). There are several approaches to address this problem: prohibit taxa that will cause damage, try to limit damages while preserving benefits, or promote taxa that are safe. In the present article, we unpack the safe list approach, which we define as "a list of taxa alien to the region of interest that are considered of sufficiently low risk of invasion and impact that the taxa can be widely used without concerns of negative impacts." We discuss the potential use of safe lists in the management of biological invasions; disentangle aspects related to the purpose, development, implementation, and impact of safe lists; and provide guidance for those considering to develop and implement such lists.

RevDate: 2024-02-23

Oddi L, Volpe V, Carotenuto G, et al (2024)

Boosting species evenness, productivity and weed control in a mixed meadow by promoting arbuscular mycorrhizas.

Frontiers in plant science, 15:1303750.

Lowland meadows represent aboveground and belowground biodiversity reservoirs in intensive agricultural areas, improving water retention and filtration, ensuring forage production, contrasting erosion and contributing to soil fertility and carbon sequestration. Besides such major ecosystem services, the presence of functionally different plant species improves forage quality, nutritional value and productivity, also limiting the establishment of weeds and alien species. Here, we tested the effectiveness of a commercial seed mixture in restoring a lowland mixed meadow in the presence or absence of inoculation with arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi and biostimulation of symbiosis development with the addition of short chain chito-oligosaccharides (CO). Plant community composition, phenology and productivity were regularly monitored alongside AM colonization in control, inoculated and CO-treated inoculated plots. Our analyses revealed that the CO treatment accelerated symbiosis development significantly increasing root colonization by AM fungi. Moreover, the combination of AM fungal inoculation and CO treatment improved plant species evenness and productivity with more balanced composition in forage species. Altogether, our study presented a successful and scalable strategy for the reintroduction of mixed meadows as valuable sources of forage biomass; demonstrated the positive impact of CO treatment on AM development in an agronomic context, extending previous observations developed under controlled laboratory conditions and leading the way to the application in sustainable agricultural practices.

RevDate: 2024-02-23

Rickward RA, Santostefano F, AJ Wilson (2024)

Among-individual behavioural variation in the ornamental red cherry shrimp, Neocaridina heteropoda.

Ecology and evolution, 14(2):e11049 pii:ECE311049.

Personality variation, defined as among-individual differences in behaviour that are repeatable across time and context, is widely reported across animal taxa. From an evolutionary perspective, characterising the amount and structure of this variation is useful since differences among individuals are the raw material for adaptive behavioural evolution. However, behavioural variation among individuals also has implications for more applied areas of evolution and ecology-from invasion biology to ecotoxicology and selective breeding in captive systems. Here, we investigate the structure of personality variation in the red cherry shrimp, Neocaridina heteropoda, a popular ornamental species that is readily kept and bred under laboratory conditions and is emerging as a decapod crustacean model across these fields, but for which basic biological, ecological and behavioural data are limited. Using two assays and a repeated measures approach, we quantify behaviours putatively indicative of shy-bold variation and test for sexual dimorphism and/or size-dependent behaviours (as predicted by some state-dependent models of personality). We find moderate-to-high behavioural repeatabilities in most traits. Although strong individual-level correlations across behaviours are consistent with a major personality axis underlying these observed traits, the multivariate structure of personality variation does not fully match a priori expectations of a shy-bold axis. This may reflect our ecological naivety with respect to what really constitutes bolder, more risk-prone, behaviour in this species. We find no evidence for sexual dimorphism and only weak support for size-dependent behaviour. Our study contributes to the growing literature describing behavioural variation in aquatic invertebrates. Furthermore, it lays a foundation for further studies harnessing the potential of this emerging model system. In particular, this existing behavioural variation could be functionally linked to life-history traits and invasive success and serve as a target of artificial selection or bioassays. It thus holds significant promise in applied research across ecotoxicology, aquaculture and invasion biology.

RevDate: 2024-02-22

Rivera-Estay V, Córdova-Lepe F, Moreno-Gómez FN, et al (2024)

Exploring the effects of competition and predation on the success of biological invasion through mathematical modeling.

Scientific reports, 14(1):4416.

Biological invasions are a major cause of species extinction and biodiversity loss. Exotic predators are the type of introduced species that have the greatest negative impact, causing the extinction of hundreds of native species. Despite this, they continue to be intentionally introduced by humans. Understanding the causes that determine the success of these invasions is a challenge within the field of invasion biology. Mathematical models play a crucial role in understanding and predicting the behavior of exotic species in different ecosystems. This study examines the effect of predation and competition on the invasion success of an exotic generalist predator in a native predator-prey system. Considering that the exotic predator both consumes the native prey and competes with the native predator, it is necessary to study the interplay between predation and competition, as one of these interspecific interactions may either counteract or contribute to the impact of the other on the success of a biological invasion. Through a mathematical model, represented by a system of ordinary differential equations, it is possible to describe four different scenarios upon the arrival of the exotic predator in a native predator-prey system. The conditions for each of these scenarios are described analytically and numerically. The numerical simulations are performed considering the American mink (Mustela vison), an invasive generalist predator. The results highlight the importance of considering the interplay between interspecific interactions for understanding biological invasion success.

RevDate: 2024-02-22

Byeon DH, WH Lee (2024)

Ensemble evaluation of potential distribution of Procambarus clarkii using multiple species distribution models.

Oecologia [Epub ahead of print].

Procambarus clarkii is a notorious invasive species that has led to ecological concerns owing to its high viability and rapid reproduction. South Korea, a country exposed to a high risk of introduction of invasive species due to active international trade, has suffered from recent massive invasions by invasive species, necessitating the evaluation of potential areas requiring intensive monitoring. In this study, we developed two different types of species distribution models, CLIMEX and random forest, for P. clarkii using occurrence records from the United States. The potential distribution in the United States was predicted along coastal lines and inland regions located below 40°N latitude The model was then applied to evaluate the potential distribution in South Korea, and an ensemble map was constructed to identify the most vulnerable domestic regions. According to both models, the domestic potential distribution was highest in most areas located at low altitudes. In the ensemble model, most of the low-altitude western regions, the eastern coast, and some southern inland regions were predicted to be suitable for the distribution of P. clarkii, and a similar distribution pattern was predicted when the model was projected into the future climate. Through this study, it is possible to secure basic data that can be used for the early monitoring of the introduction and subsequent distribution of P. clarkii.

RevDate: 2024-02-22

Arlé E, Knight TM, Jiménez-Muñoz M, et al (2024)

The cumulative niche approach: A framework to assess the performance of ecological niche model projections.

Ecology and evolution, 14(2):e11060.

Ecological Niche Models (ENMs) are often used to project species distributions within alien ranges and in future climatic scenarios. However, ENMs depend on species-environment equilibrium, which may be absent for actively expanding species. We present a novel framework to estimate whether species have reached environmental equilibrium in their native and alien ranges. The method is based on the estimation of niche breadth with the accumulation of species occurrences. An asymptote will indicate exhaustive knowledge of the realised niches. We demonstrate the CNA framework for 26 species of mammals, amphibians, and birds. Possible outcomes of the framework include: (1) There is enough data to quantify the native and alien realised niches, allowing us to calculate niche expansion between the native and alien ranges, also indicating that ENMs can be reliably projected to new environmental conditions. (2) The data in the native range is not adequate but an asymptote is reached in the alien realised niche, indicating low confidence in our ability to evaluate niche expansion in the alien range but high confidence in model projections to new environmental conditions within the alien range. (3) There is enough data to quantify the native realised niche, but not enough knowledge about the alien realised niche, hindering the reliability of projections beyond sampled conditions. (4) Both the native and alien ranges do not reach an asymptote, and thus few robust conclusions about the species' niche or future projections can be made. Our framework can be used to detect species' environmental equilibrium in both the native and alien ranges, to quantify changes in the realised niche during the invasion processes, and to estimate the likely accuracy of model projections to new environmental conditions.

RevDate: 2024-02-22

Gavrilko D, Zhikharev V, Zolotareva T, et al (2024)

Biodiversity of zooplankton (Rotifera, Cladocera and Copepoda) in the tributaries of Cheboksary Reservoir (Middle Volga, Russia).

Biodiversity data journal, 12:e116330.

BACKGROUND: Freshwater zooplankton is an important component of the ecological communities of inland water bodies. It acts as an important part of the food web and participates in the self-purification processes of aquatic ecosystems. To study the abundance and distribution of species, a sampling event dataset was compiled and then published through GBIF. The aim of the work was to describe the current zooplankton fauna (Rotifera, Cladocera and Copepoda) and its abundance, based on a recently published dataset. The research was conducted from 2015 to 2022. Zooplankton samples were collected by vertical towing a plankton net (70 μm mesh) from the bottom to the water surface or by filtering through a net, the water being collected with a measuring bucket. The samples were concentrated to 100 ml and fixed with a final concentration of 4% formalin solution. For each sampling event, the coordinates of the location, number of individuals and date were recorded.

NEW INFORMATION: The dataset contains information on 259 taxа, including 257 species and subspecies of zooplankton from 36 families found in the tributaries of the Cheboksary Reservoir. The families Chydoridae (35 species), Brachionidae (31) and Cyclopidae (27) were the most species-rich. Four invasive species were found: Kellicottiabostoniensis (Rousselet, 1908), Acanthocyclopsamericanus (Marsh, 1893), Ilyocryptusspinifer Herrick, 1882 and Thermocyclopstaihokuensis Harada, 1931.

RevDate: 2024-02-22

Akomolafe GF, Rosazlina R, B Omomoh (2024)

Soil seed bank dynamics of two invasive alien plants in Nigeria: implications for ecosystem restoration.

AoB PLANTS, 16(2):plae003.

The assessment of seed banks could provide useful hints towards ensuring restoration planning and invasive species management. In this study, the impacts of two invaders such as Hyptis suaveolens and Urena lobata on the soil seed banks were investigated. We also assessed the seed characteristics of the invaders at the invaded sites. This was achieved using 10 sites each for H. suaveolens- and U. lobata-invaded habitats and -non-invaded habitats making a total of 30 sites. We collected 200 soil samples from each habitat type. A seedling emergence method was used to determine the seed bank recruitment of both invasive plants. The diversity indices of the above-ground vegetation of sites invaded by the two plants were significantly lower than those of the non-invaded sites. Only two plant species emerged from the seed banks of H. suaveolens and five plants from those of U. lobata when compared with non-invaded sites where 53 species emerged. A larger portion of the seeds was located in the soil's lower layer at all the sites invaded by H. suaveolens while those of U. lobata and non-invaded sites were found in the upper layers and there are significant associations between the habitats. The lower soil layers of the two species have the highest percentage of viable seeds. These results help us to understand more about the invasiveness of both species as related to their impacts on the seed banks and native vegetation. It also indicates that the native species that emerged from the invaded seed banks could be used for the restoration of the invaded habitats.

RevDate: 2024-02-22
CmpDate: 2024-02-22

Parr CL, Te Beest M, N Stevens (2024)

Conflation of reforestation with restoration is widespread.

Science (New York, N.Y.), 383(6684):698-701.

Across Africa, vast areas of nonforest are threatened by inappropriate restoration in the form of tree planting.

RevDate: 2024-02-21

Mendoza-Roldan JA, Perles L, Filippi E, et al (2024)

Parasites and microorganisms associated with the snakes collected for the "festa Dei serpari" in Cocullo, Italy.

PLoS neglected tropical diseases, 18(2):e0011973 pii:PNTD-D-23-01442 [Epub ahead of print].

While in much of the Western world snakes are feared, in the small, rural, mountainous town of Cocullo, in the middle of central Italy, snakes are annually collected and celebrated in a sacro-profane ritual. Every 1st of May, Serpari (snake catchers) capture and showcase dozens of non-venomous snakes to celebrate the ritual of San Domenico. In order to detect potential zoonotic pathogens within this unique epidemiological context, parasites and microorganisms of snakes harvested for the "festa dei serpari" ritual was investigated. Snakes (n = 112) were examined and ectoparasites collected, as well as blood and feces sampled. Ectoparasites were identified morpho-molecularly, and coprological examination conducted through direct smear and flotation. Molecular screenings were performed to identify parasites and microorganisms in collected samples (i.e., Mesostigmata mites, Anaplasma/Ehrlichia spp., Rickettsia spp., Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato, Coxiella burnetii, Babesia/Theileria spp., Cryptosporidium spp., Giardia spp., Leishmania spp. and helminths). Overall, 28.5% (32/112) of snakes were molecularly positive for at least one parasite and/or microorganism. Endosymbiont Wolbachia bacteria were identified from Macronyssidae mites and zoonotic vector-borne bacteria (e.g., Rickettsia, Leishmania), as well as orally transmitted pathogens (i.e., Cryptosporidium, Giardia, Proteus vulgaris, Pseudomonas), were detected from blood and feces. Thus, given the central role of the snakes in the tradition of Cocullo, surveys of their parasitic fauna and associated zoonotic pathogens may aid to generate conservation policies to benefit the human-snake interactions, whilst preserving the cultural patrimony of this event.

RevDate: 2024-02-21

Kimball S, Rath J, Coffey JE, et al (2024)

Long-term drought promotes invasive species by reducing wildfire severity.

Ecology [Epub ahead of print].

Anthropogenic climate change has increased the frequency of drought, wildfire, and invasions of non-native species. Although high-severity fires linked to drought can inhibit recovery of native vegetation in forested ecosystems, it remains unclear how drought impacts the recovery of other plant communities following wildfire. We leveraged an existing rainfall manipulation experiment to test the hypothesis that reduced precipitation, fuel load, and fire severity convert plant community composition from native shrubs to invasive grasses in a Southern California coastal sage scrub system. We measured community composition before and after the 2020 Silverado wildfire in plots with three rainfall treatments. Drought reduced fuel load and vegetation cover, which reduced fire severity. Native shrubs had greater prefire cover in added water plots compared to reduced water plots. Native cover was lower and invasive cover was higher in postfire reduced water plots compared to postfire added and ambient water plots. Our results demonstrate the importance of fuel load on fire severity and plant community composition on an ecosystem scale. Management should focus on reducing fire frequency and removing invasive species to maintain the resilience of coastal sage scrub communities facing drought. In these communities, controlled burns are not recommended as they promote invasive plants.

RevDate: 2024-02-20

Zhang Q, Ding X, Zhang Y, et al (2024)

A smartphone-based crowd-sourced real-time surveillance platform (apple snail inspector) for the invasive snails: a design and development study.

Parasites & vectors, 17(1):78.

BACKGROUND: The large amphibious freshwater apple snail is an important invasive species in China, but there is currently no method available for their surveillance. The development and popularization of smartphones provide a new platform for research on surveillance technologies for the early detection and effective control of invasive species.

METHODS: The ASI surveillance system was developed based on the infrastructure of the WeChat platform and Amap. The user can directly enter the game interface through the WeChat port on their mobile phone, and the system automatically obtains their location. The user can then report the location of apple snails. The administrator can audit the reported information, and all information can be exported to Microsoft Excel version 2016 for analysis. The map was generated by ArcGIS 10.2 and was used to characterize the spatial and temporal distribution of apple snails in Jiangsu Province.

RESULTS: The architecture of ASI consists of three parts: a mobile terminal, a server terminal and a desktop terminal. We published more than 10 tweets on the official WeChat account of the system to announce it to the public, and a total of 207 users in 2020 and 2021 correctly reported sightings of apple snails. We identified 550 apple snails breeding sites in 2020 and 2021, featuring ponds (81%), parks (17%) and farmland (2%). In addition, most of the locations contained snail eggs, and the reporting times mainly occurred between May and September.

CONCLUSIONS: The ASI is an effective surveillance system that can be used to identify the breeding locations of apple snails and provides the basis of prevention and control for its dispersal. Its successful development and operation provide new potential avenues for surveillance of other public health issues.

RevDate: 2024-02-20

Karin BR, Lough-Stevens M, Lin TE, et al (2024)

The natural and human-mediated expansion of a human-commensal lizard into the fringes of Southeast Asia.

BMC ecology and evolution, 24(1):25.

BACKGROUND: Human-commensal species often display deep ancestral genetic structure within their native range and founder-effects and/or evidence of multiple introductions and admixture in newly established areas. We investigated the phylogeography of Eutropis multifasciata, an abundant human-commensal scincid lizard that occurs across Southeast Asia, to determine the extent of its native range and to assess the sources and signatures of human introduction outside of the native range. We sequenced over 350 samples of E. multifasciata for the mitochondrial ND2 gene and reanalyzed a previous RADseq population genetic dataset in a phylogenetic framework.

RESULTS: Nuclear and mitochondrial trees are concordant and show that E. multifasciata has retained high levels of genetic structure across Southeast Asia despite being frequently moved by humans. Lineage boundaries in the native range roughly correspond to several major biogeographic barriers, including Wallace's Line and the Isthmus of Kra. Islands at the outer fringe of the range show evidence of founder-effects and multiple introductions.

CONCLUSIONS: Most of enormous range of E. multifasciata across Southeast Asia is native and it only displays signs of human-introduction or recent expansion along the eastern and northern fringe of its range. There were at least three events of human-introductions to Taiwan and offshore islands, and several oceanic islands in eastern Indonesia show a similar pattern. In Myanmar and Hainan, there is a founder-effect consistent with post-warming expansion after the last glacial maxima or human introduction.

RevDate: 2024-02-20

Guo W, Yu L, Tang L, et al (2024)

Recent Advances in Mechanistic Understanding of Metal-Free Carbon Thermocatalysis and Electrocatalysis with Model Molecules.

Nano-micro letters, 16(1):125.

Metal-free carbon, as the most representative heterogeneous metal-free catalysts, have received considerable interests in electro- and thermo-catalytic reactions due to their impressive performance and sustainability. Over the past decade, well-designed carbon catalysts with tunable structures and heteroatom groups coupled with various characterization techniques have proposed numerous reaction mechanisms. However, active sites, key intermediate species, precise structure-activity relationships and dynamic evolution processes of carbon catalysts are still rife with controversies due to the monotony and limitation of used experimental methods. In this Review, we summarize the extensive efforts on model catalysts since the 2000s, particularly in the past decade, to overcome the influences of material and structure limitations in metal-free carbon catalysis. Using both nanomolecule model and bulk model, the real contribution of each alien species, defect and edge configuration to a series of fundamentally important reactions, such as thermocatalytic reactions, electrocatalytic reactions, were systematically studied. Combined with in situ techniques, isotope labeling and size control, the detailed reaction mechanisms, the precise 2D structure-activity relationships and the rate-determining steps were revealed at a molecular level. Furthermore, the outlook of model carbon catalysis has also been proposed in this work.

RevDate: 2024-02-20

Bird JP, Fuller RA, JD Shaw (2024)

Patterns of recovery in extant and extirpated seabirds after the world's largest multipredator eradication.

Conservation biology : the journal of the Society for Conservation Biology [Epub ahead of print].

Eradicating invasive predators from islands can result in substantial recovery of seabirds, but the mechanisms that drive population changes remain poorly understood. Meta-analyses have recently revealed that immigration is surprisingly important to the recovery of philopatric seabirds, but it is not known whether dispersal and philopatry interact predictably to determine rates of population growth and changes of distribution. We used whole-island surveys and long-term monitoring plots to study the abundance, distribution, and trends of 4 burrowing seabird species on Macquarie Island, Australia, to examine the legacy impacts of invasive species and ongoing responses to the world's largest eradication of multiple species of vertebrates. Wekas (Gallirallus australis) were eradicated in 1988; cats (Felis catus) in 2001; and rabbits (Oryctolagus cuniculus), black rats (Rattus rattus), and mice (Mus mus) in 2011-2014. We compared surveys from 1976-1979 and 2017-2018 and monitoring from the 1990s and 2000s onward. Antarctic prions (Pachyptila desolata) and white-headed petrels (Pterodroma lessonii) increased ∼1% per year. Blue petrels (Halobaena caerulea) and gray petrels (Procellaria cinerea) recolonized following extirpation from the main island in the 1900s but remained spatially and numerically rare in 2018. However, they increased rapidly at 14% and 10% per year, respectively, since cat eradication in 2001. Blue and gray petrel recolonization occurred on steep, dry, west-facing slopes close to ridgelines at low elevation (i.e., high-quality petrel habitat). They overlapped <5% with the distribution of Antarctic prion and white-headed petrels which occurred in suboptimal shallow, wet, east-facing slopes at high elevation. We inferred that the speed of population growth of recolonizing species was related to their numerically smaller starting size compared with the established species and was driven by immigration and selection of ideal habitat.

RevDate: 2024-02-20

Alencar JBR, Sampaio A, CRV da Fonseca (2024)

Ecological niche modeling of two Microtheca Stål, 1860 species (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae: Chrysomelinae) in the Americas: insights from Brassicaceae occurrence.

International journal of biometeorology [Epub ahead of print].

Biological invasions pose significant threats to biodiversity, with invasive species spread often facilitated by human activities. Consequently, this research utilized ecological niche modeling (ENM) to overcome this limitation and map the potential suitability of Microtheca ochroloma Stål, 1860 and Microtheca semilaevis Stål, 1860, which have been evaluated as potential insect pests in the Americas, zones for four genera of Brassicaceae, which include globally cultivated species such as Sinapis L., Raphanus L., Eruca Mill., and Brassica L. We utilized multiple methods to forecast the ecological habitat of Microtheca Stål, 1860 species based on distribution data and various environmental indicators. Our models, exhibiting high-performance metrics (TSS ranging from 0.84 to 0.96), revealed extensive environmental suitability for these species across the Americas, including previously unreported regions. The predicted zones overlapped significantly with areas where Brassicaceae crops were grown. Contrary to some previous assertions, our findings suggest that while these Microtheca species are recognized pests on these crops, their consistent widespread damage may be overstated. Nevertheless, their invasive potential could have broad ecological impacts, including biodiversity loss. Our research emphasizes the need for focused sampling in potential distribution zones and underlines the value of integrating ENM in predicting and managing invasive species spread.

RevDate: 2024-02-20

Marhri A, Boumediene M, Tikent A, et al (2024)

A Comparative Analysis of Morphological Characteristics between Endangered Local Prickly Pear and the Newly Introduced Dactylopius opuntiae-Resistant Species in Eastern Morocco.

Scientifica, 2024:7939465.

Prickly pear serves as a significant source of income for farmers worldwide, with production taking place in temperate, subtropical, and cold regions. The objective of the present investigation is to explore the morphological parameters of Opuntia robusta and Opuntia dillenii which are resistant to the white cochineal (Dactylopius opuntiae), as well as the local prickly pear that is currently threatened with extinction. This investigation aims to evaluate the feasibility of replacing the endangered local prickly pear with the recently introduced species O. robusta and O. dillenii. This analysis is based on a comprehensive assessment of 26 qualitative and 25 quantitative traits pertaining to cladodes and fruits. In terms of species differentiation and the selection of discriminative features, this study demonstrates the effectiveness of various statistical methods, as well as the analysis carried out according to the descriptors recommended by the International Union for the Protection of New Varieties of Plants (UPOV). Of the 51 parameters evaluated, 13 qualitative and 23 quantitative characters are significant in differentiating the species under study. This underscores the importance of quantitative traits in distinguishing different prickly pear species. Furthermore, color is identified as a crucial characteristic for discriminating between the studied samples. O. robusta is characterized by its high fruit weight, large size, greater pulp content, and high pulp-to-peel ratio, all of which are desirable traits for fresh consumption. Additionally, O. robusta has the highest number of fully developed seeds, making it an attractive option for use in the cosmetic industry. This characteristic renders the O. robusta a potential substitute for the endangered ecotype . However, O. robusta is distinguished by its short stalk, which poses a challenge for fruit harvesting and leaves it susceptible to physical damage and quality loss. Conversely, O. dillenii displays a low pulp content, which serves as a critical indicator of fruit quality. The only desirable agronomic trait of this species is its elevated seed content, which has the potential for utilization in oil production for the cosmetic industry.

RevDate: 2024-02-17

Stuart KC, Johnson RN, Major R, et al (2024)

The genome of a globally invasive passerine, the common myna, Acridotheres tristis.

DNA research : an international journal for rapid publication of reports on genes and genomes pii:7609456 [Epub ahead of print].

In an era of global climate change, biodiversity conservation is receiving increased attention. Conservation efforts are greatly aided by genetic tools and approaches, which seek to understand patterns of genetic diversity and how they impact species health and ability to persist under future climate regimes. Invasive species offer vital model systems in which to investigate questions regarding adaptive potential, with a particular focus on how changes in genetic diversity and effective population size interact with novel selection regimes. The common myna (Acridotheres tristis) is a globally invasive passerine and is an excellent model species for research both into the persistence of low-diversity populations and the mechanics of biological invasion. To underpin research on the invasion genetics of this species, we present the genome assembly of the common myna. We describe the genomic landscape of this species, including genome wide allelic diversity, methylation, repeats, and recombination rate, as well as an examination of gene family evolution. Finally, we use demographic analysis to identify that some native regions underwent a dramatic population increase between the two most recent periods of glaciation, and reveal artefactual impacts of genetic bottlenecks on demographic analysis.

RevDate: 2024-02-17

Holmberg I, Tolonen L, Paviala J, et al (2024)

Positive selection has shaped the evolution of Argentine ant immune genes both in native and introduced supercolonies.

Journal of evolutionary biology, 37(2):131-140.

The highly invasive Argentine ant (Linepithema humile) started its colonisation from the species' native range in South America approximately 150 years ago and has since become one of the major pests in the world. We investigated how the shifts into new ranges have affected the evolution of Argentine ants' immune genes. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first broadscale population genetic study focusing on ants' immune genes. We analysed comprehensive targeted-seq data of immune and non-immune genes containing 174 genes from 18 Argentine ant supercolonies covering the species' native and introduced ranges. We predicted that the immune gene evolution of introduced supercolonies differs from that of the native supercolonies and proposed two different, non-mutually exclusive hypotheses for this: 1) the enemy release hypothesis and 2) the higher pathogen pressure hypothesis - both of which seem to explain the observed evolutionary patterns on their behalf. Our results show that the introduced supercolonies were targeted by weaker selection than natives, but positive selection was evident among supercolonies of both ranges. Moreover, in some cases, such as the antiviral RNAi genes, introduced range supercolonies harboured a higher proportion of positively selected genes than natives. This observation was striking, knowing the recent demographic history and the detected generally lower selection efficacy of introduced supercolonies. In conclusion, it is evident that pathogen pressure is ubiquitous and strongly affects the immune gene evolution in Argentine ants.

RevDate: 2024-02-16

Chen X, Lei Y, Liang C, et al (2024)

Odorant Binding Protein Expressed in Legs Enhances Malathion Tolerance in Bactrocera dorsalis (Hendel).

Journal of agricultural and food chemistry [Epub ahead of print].

Bactrocera dorsalis is a highly invasive species and is one of the most destructive agricultural pests worldwide. Organophosphorus insecticides have been widely and chronically used to control it, leading to the escalating development of resistance. Recently, odorant binding proteins (OBPs) have been found to play a role in reducing insecticide susceptibility. In this study, we used RT-qPCR to measure the expression levels of four highly expressed OBP genes in the legs of B. dorsalis at different developmental stages and observed the effect of malathion exposure on their expression patterns. The results showed that OBP28a-2 had a high expression level in 5 day old adults of B. dorsalis, and its expression increased after exposure to malathion. By CRISPR/Cas9 mutagenesis, we generated OBP28a-2[-/-] null mutants and found that they were more susceptible to malathion than wild-type adults. Furthermore, in vitro direct affinity assays confirmed that OBP28a-2 has a strong affinity for malathion, suggesting that it plays a role in reducing the susceptibility of B. dorsalis to malathion. Our findings enriched our understanding of the function of OBPs. The results highlighted the potential role of OBPs as buffering proteins that help insects survive exposure to insecticides.

RevDate: 2024-02-16

Andraca-Gómez G, Ordano M, Lira-Noriega A, et al (2024)

Climatic and soil characteristics account for the genetic structure of the invasive cactus moth Cactoblastis cactorum, in its native range in Argentina.

PeerJ, 12:e16861 pii:16861.

BACKGROUND: Knowledge of the physical and environmental conditions that may limit the migration of invasive species is crucial to assess the potential for expansion outside their native ranges. The cactus moth, Cactoblastis cactorum, is native to South America (Argentina, Paraguay, Uruguay and Brazil) and has been introduced and invaded the Caribbean and southern United States, among other regions. In North America there is an ongoing process of range expansion threatening cacti biodiversity of the genus Opuntia and the commercial profits of domesticated Opuntia ficus-indica.

METHODS: To further understand what influences the distribution and genetic structure of this otherwise important threat to native and managed ecosystems, in the present study we combined ecological niche modeling and population genetic analyses to identify potential environmental barriers in the native region of Argentina. Samples were collected on the host with the wider distribution range, O. ficus-indica.

RESULTS: Significant genetic structure was detected using 10 nuclear microsatellites and 24 sampling sites. At least six genetic groups delimited by mountain ranges, salt flats and wetlands were mainly located to the west of the Dry Chaco ecoregion. Niche modeling supports that this region has high environmental suitability where the upper soil temperature and humidity, soil carbon content and precipitation were the main environmental factors that explain the presence of the moth. Environmental filters such as the upper soil layer may be critical for pupal survival and consequently for the establishment of populations in new habitats, whereas the presence of available hosts is a necessary conditions for insect survival, upper soil and climatic characteristics will determine the opportunities for a successful establishment.

RevDate: 2024-02-15

Sisay B, Tamiru A, Subramanian S, et al (2024)

Pheromonal variation and mating between two mitotypes of fall armyworm (Spodoptera frugiperda) in Africa.

Scientific reports, 14(1):3848.

In the Americas, the fall armyworm (Spodoptera frugiperda) exists in two genetically distinct strains, the corn (C) and rice (R) strains. Despite their names, these strains are not associated with host plant preferences but have been shown to vary in pheromone composition and male responses. Recently, S. frugiperda was detected in Africa as an invasive species, but knowledge about variation in strain types, pheromone composition and inter-strain mating of populations of the pest in the continent has not been fully examined. Therefore, this study aimed to investigate variations, if any in the pheromone composition of female moths, male moth responses, and mating between C and R mitotypes of S. frugiperda populations in Kenya, as well as their geographic distribution. Strains (mitotypes) of S. frugiperda were identified using mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) markers, and their pheromonal composition determined by coupled gas chromatography-mass spectrometric (GC-MS) analysis. Male moth responses to these compounds were evaluated using GC-electroantennographic detection (EAD), electroantennogram (EAG), and wind tunnel assays. Oviposition assays were used to determine whether R and C mitotype moths could mate and produce eggs. The results showed that both the R and C mitotypes were present, and there were no statistically significant differences in their distribution across all sampled locations. Five pheromone compounds including (Z)-7-dodecenyl acetate (Z7-12:OAc), (Z)-7-tetradecenyl acetate (Z7-14:OAc), (Z)-9-tetradecenyl acetate (Z9-14:OAc), (Z)-11-tetradecenyl acetate (Z11-14:OAc) and (Z)-11-hexadecenyl acetate (Z11-16:OAc), were detected in the pheromone glands of female moths of both mitotypes, with Z9-14:OAc being the most abundant. The relative percentage composition of Z9-14:OAc was similar in both mitotypes. However, the R mitotype had a 2.7 times higher relative percentage composition of Z7-12:OAc compared to the C mitotype moth, while the C mitotype moth had a 2.4 times higher relative percentage composition of Z11-16:OAc than the R mitotype moth. Male moths of both mitotypes exhibited similar responses to the pheromone compounds, showing the strongest responses to Z9-14:OAc and Z7-12:OAc in electrophysiological and behavioural assays. There was mating between R and C mitotypes with egg production comparable to mating within the same mitotype. Our results revealed that differences between the two S. frugiperda mitotypes are characterized by female moth pheromone composition rather than male moth responses to the pheromones, and that this does not prevent hybridisation between the mitotypes, which may have implications for their management.

RevDate: 2024-02-15

Xu M, Li SP, Liu C, et al (2024)

Global freshwater fish invasion linked to the presence of closely related species.

Nature communications, 15(1):1411.

In the Anthropocene, non-native freshwater fish introductions and translocations have occurred extensively worldwide. However, their global distribution patterns and the factors influencing their establishment remain poorly understood. We analyze a comprehensive database of 14953 freshwater fish species across 3119 river basins and identify global hotspots for exotic and translocated non-native fishes. We show that both types of non-native fishes are more likely to occur when closely related to native fishes. This finding is consistent across measures of phylogenetic relatedness, biogeographical realms, and highly invaded countries, even after accounting for the influence of native diversity. This contradicts Darwin's naturalization hypothesis, suggesting that the presence of close relatives more often signifies suitable habitats than intensified competition, predicting the establishment of non-native fish species. Our study provides a comprehensive assessment of global non-native freshwater fish patterns and their phylogenetic correlates, laying the groundwork for understanding and predicting future fish invasions in freshwater ecosystems.

RevDate: 2024-02-15

Liu T, Chen X, Du M, et al (2024)

Replacing Spartina alterniflora with northward-afforested mangroves has the potential to acquire extra blue carbon.

The Science of the total environment pii:S0048-9697(24)01091-X [Epub ahead of print].

Climate change provides an opportunity for the northward expansion of mangroves, and thus, the afforestation of mangroves at higher latitude areas presents an achievable way for coastal restoration, especially where invasive species S. alterniflora needs to be clipped. However, it is unclear whether replacing S. alterniflora with northward-afforested mangroves would benefit carbon sequestration or not. In the study, we examined the key CO2 and CH4 exchange processes in a young (3 yr) northward-afforested wetland dominated by K. obovata. We also collected soil cores from various ages (3, 15, 30, and 60 years) to analyze the carbon storage characteristics of mangrove stands using a space-for-time substitution approach. Our findings revealed that the young northward mangroves exhibited obvious seasonal variations in net ecosystem CO2 exchange (NEE) and functioned as a modest carbon sink, with an annual mean NEE of -107.9 g C m[-2] yr[-1]. Additionally, the CH4 emissions from the northward mangroves were lower in comparison to natural mangroves, with the primary source being the soil. Furthermore, when comparing the vertical distribution of soil carbon, it became evident that both S. alterniflora and mangroves contributed to organic carbon accumulation in the upper soil layers. Our study also identified a clear correlation that the biomass and carbon stocks of mangroves increased logarithmically with age (R[2] = 0.69, p < 0.001). Notably, both vegetation and soil carbon stocks (especially in the deeper layers) of the 15 yr northward mangroves, were markedly higher than those of S. alterniflora. This suggests that replacing S. alterniflora with northward-afforested mangroves is an effective long-term strategy for future coasts to enhance blue carbon sequestration.

RevDate: 2024-02-15

Patel KK, Toft N, Kovaliski J, et al (2024)

Bayesian evaluation of temporal changes in sensitivity and specificity of three serological tests for multiple circulating strains of rabbit haemorrhagic disease virus.

Preventive veterinary medicine, 225:106137 pii:S0167-5877(24)00023-0 [Epub ahead of print].

Competition and indirect ELISAs are currently being used to monitor rabbit haemorrhagic disease viruses (RHDV1 and RHDV2) in rabbits worldwide. Temporal changes in the sensitivity (Se) and specificity (Sp) of RHDV1 competition-ELISA (cELISA1), RHDV2 competition-ELISA (cELISA2), and RHDV1 Immunoglobulin G (IgG1) ELISA, were investigated using Bayesian Latent Class models (BCLM) in the Australian wild rabbit population where both viruses circulate simultaneously and a long-term serological dataset exists. When cELISA1 was compared to IgG1 ELISA, the Se of cELISA1 improved while the Sp of IgG1 ELISA declined over the 2011-21. This corresponded with a decline in the true RHDV1 prevalence in 2018-21, suggesting that a large proportion of RHDV1 exposed rabbits survived the introduction and dominance of RHDV2 up to approximately 2017/2018, after which they died and were not replaced. The Se and Sp estimates for 2014-15 for both cELISA1 and IgG1 ELISA, and the true prevalence when analysing all three tests together were similar to those obtained from the analysis of cELISA1/IgG1 ELISA. The same was also true for the Se and Sp of cELISA2 and IgG1 ELISA estimates from 2018 onwards. This suggests that RHDV1 was the dominant infection type in 2014-15, but RHDV2 was the dominant infection type in 2018-21. Further, the increase in Se of cELISA2 and the low Sp of IgG1 ELISA in the cELISA2/IgG1 ELISA analysis, compared to the Se of cELISA2 and Sp of IgG1 ELISA when analysing all three tests together suggests that the underlying infection status was more influenced by RHDV2 and that the higher Se of IgG1 ELISA is due to cross-reaction of RHDV2 antibodies on IgG1 ELISA. The true prevalence data suggest that RHDV2 exposure peaked in 2017. Our findings show that test characteristics changed in response to the changing virus prevalences over time. IgG1 ELISA, currently having a high Se, should be used to monitor both viruses and will perform better than both cELISAs.

RevDate: 2024-02-15

Berger L, Skerratt LF, Kosch TA, et al (2024)

Advances in Managing Chytridiomycosis for Australian Frogs: Gradarius Firmus Victoria.

Annual review of animal biosciences, 12:113-133.

Extensive knowledge gains from research worldwide over the 25 years since the discovery of chytridiomycosis can be used for improved management. Strategies that have saved populations in the short term and/or enabled recovery include captive breeding, translocation into disease refugia, translocation from resistant populations, disease-free exclosures, and preservation of disease refuges with connectivity to previous habitat, while antifungal treatments have reduced mortality rates in the wild. Increasing host resistance is the goal of many strategies under development, including vaccination and targeted genetic interventions. Pathogen-directed strategies may be more challenging but would have broad applicability. While the search for the silver bullet solution continues, we should value targeted local interventions that stop extinction and buy time for evolution of resistance or development of novel solutions. As for most invasive species and infectious diseases, we need to accept that ongoing management is necessary. For species continuing to decline, proactive deployment and assessment of promising interventions are more valid than a hands-off, do-no-harm approach that will likely allow further extinctions.

RevDate: 2024-02-15

Blake S, Cabrera F, Rivas-Torres G, et al (2024)

Invasion by Cedrela odorata threatens long distance migration of Galapagos tortoises.

Ecology and evolution, 14(2):e10994.

Invasive alien species are among the most pervasive threats to biodiversity. Invasive species can cause catastrophic reductions in populations of native and endemic species and the collapse of ecosystem function. A second major global conservation concern is the extirpation of large-bodied mobile animals, including long-distance migrants, which often have keystone ecological roles over extensive spatial extents. Here, we report on a potentially catastrophic synergy between these phenomena that threatens the endemic biota of the Galapagos Archipelago. We used GPS telemetry to track 140 migratory journeys by 25 Western Santa Cruz Island Galapagos tortoises. We plotted the spatial interaction between tortoise migrations and recently established non-native forest dominated by the invasive tree Cedrela odorata (Cedrela forest). We qualified (a) the proportion of migratory journeys that traversed Cedrela forest, and (b) the probability that this observed pattern occurred by chance. Tortoise migrations were overwhelmingly restricted to small corridors between Cedrela forest blocks, indicating clear avoidance of those blocks. Just eight of 140 migrations traversed extensive Cedrela stands. Tortoises avoid Cedrela forest during their migrations. Further expansion of Cedrela forest threatens long-distance migration and population viability of critically endangered Galapagos tortoises. Applied research to determine effective management solutions to mitigate Cedrela invasion is a high priority.

RevDate: 2024-02-15
CmpDate: 2024-02-15

Guo K, Pyšek P, van Kleunen M, et al (2024)

Plant invasion and naturalization are influenced by genome size, ecology and economic use globally.

Nature communications, 15(1):1330.

Human factors and plant characteristics are important drivers of plant invasions, which threaten ecosystem integrity, biodiversity and human well-being. However, while previous studies often examined a limited number of factors or focused on a specific invasion stage (e.g., naturalization) for specific regions, a multi-factor and multi-stage analysis at the global scale is lacking. Here, we employ a multi-level framework to investigate the interplay between plant characteristics (genome size, Grime's adaptive CSR-strategies and native range size) and economic use and how these factors collectively affect plant naturalization and invasion success worldwide. While our findings derived from structural equation models highlight the substantial contribution of human assistance in both the naturalization and spread of invasive plants, we also uncovered the pivotal role of species' adaptive strategies among the factors studied, and the significantly varying influence of these factors across invasion stages. We further revealed that the effects of genome size on plant invasions were partially mediated by species adaptive strategies and native range size. Our study provides insights into the complex and dynamic process of plant invasions and identifies its key drivers worldwide.

RevDate: 2024-02-15

Lee MR, Flory SL, Phillips RP, et al (2018)

Site conditions are more important than abundance for explaining plant invasion impacts on soil nitrogen cycling.

Ecosphere (Washington, D.C), 9(10):1-13.

Invasive plant species can alter critical ecosystem processes including nitrogen transformations, but it is often difficult to anticipate where in an invaded landscape, these effects will occur. Our predictive ability lags because we lack a framework for understanding the multiple pathways through which environmental conditions mediate invader impacts. Here, we present a framework using structural equation modeling to evaluate the impact of an invasive grass, Microstegium vimineum (M.v.), on nitrogen cycling based on a series of invaded sites that varied in invader biomass and non-M.v. understory biomass, tree basal area, light availability, and soil conditions. Unlike previous studies, we did not find an overall pattern of elevated nitrate concentrations or higher nitrification rates in M.v.-invaded areas. We found that reference plot conditions mediated differences in mineralization between paired invaded and reference plots at each site through indirect (via M.v. biomass), direct, and interactive pathways; however, the strongest pathways were independent of M.v. biomass. For example, sites with low reference soil nitrate and high non-M.v. understory biomass tended to have faster mineralization at 5-15 cm in invaded plots. These findings suggest that more attention to reference conditions is needed to understand the impact of invasive species on soil nitrogen cycling and other ecosystem processes and that the greatest impacts will not necessarily be where the invader is most abundant.

RevDate: 2024-02-14

Langner T, Otranto D, Bezerra-Santos MA, et al (2024)

Detection of Spirocerca lupi and an unknown Trichinella-like nematode in raccoon (Procyon lotor).

International journal for parasitology. Parasites and wildlife, 23:100911.

The raccoon Procyon lotor (Carnivora: Procyonidae) is an invasive species of growing importance for the introduction of alien pathogens or as additional hosts for autochthonous pathogens in Europe, including zoonotic parasites. As the population is steadily increasing and outcompeting the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) in Germany, the consumption of raccoon meat raises concerns about pathogens they may transmit. Therefore the presence of Trichinella larvae was here investigated in muscle samples (n = 904) of raccoons from northern Germany. No Trichinella larvae were found, thus confirming the general low occurrence of this parasite in Germany. However, Spirocerca lupi (n = 12) and an unidentified Trichinella-like nematode (n = 1) were accidently detected in the examined samples. The first is not a zoonotic parasite but has a high veterinary relevance as it can cause severe diseases in dogs. It is the first documented autochthonous infection of this nematode in Germany. The larvae of an unidentified Trichinella-like nematode were found in high abundance in all examined muscles of one raccoon, though they could not be identified to species level. Histological investigation revealed intramuscular cystic structures. This is the largest study investigating muscular parasites of raccoons in Europe so far, which suggests that this invasive animal species is infected by S. lupi and by a yet unknown Trichinella -like parasite.

RevDate: 2024-02-14

Park HB, A Lim (2024)

New insights into predator-prey dynamics: First evidence of a leopard cat hunting coypus.

Ecology and evolution, 14(2):e11016.

We present the first documented evidence of interactions between the leopard cat (Prionailurus bengalensis euptilurus) and the invasive coypu (Myocastor coypus) in South Korea, captured through camera traps in Hwapocheon wetland park from May 2015 to April 2017. Two interactions were recorded: one showing a leopard cat carrying a carcass of sub-adult coypu and the other a 4-min sequence of predation and defense between two species. The observed interactions indicate active predatory behavior by the leopard cat against coypus and cooperative defense by coypus. These findings shed new light on predator-prey dynamics, highlighting the leopard cat's potential role as a predator of coypus and coypus' defensive abilities. Understanding these relationships could facilitate more effective management of invasive species and offer broader implications for ecosystem dynamics and conservation strategies.

RevDate: 2024-02-14

Brown GP, Shine R, LA Rollins (2024)

A biological invasion modifies the dynamics of a host-parasite arms race.

Proceedings. Biological sciences, 291(2016):20232403.

By imposing novel selection pressures on both participants, biological invasions can modify evolutionary 'arms races' between hosts and parasites. A spatially replicated cross-infection experiment reveals strong spatial divergence in the ability of lungworms (Rhabdias pseudosphaerocephala) to infect invasive cane toads (Rhinella marina) in Australia. In areas colonized for longer than 20 years, toads are more resistant to infection by local strains of parasites than by allopatric strains. The situation reverses at the invasion front, where super-infective parasites have evolved. Invasion-induced shifts in genetic diversity and selective pressures may explain why hosts gain advantage over parasites in long-colonized areas, whereas parasites gain advantage at the invasion front.

RevDate: 2024-02-14
CmpDate: 2024-02-14

Yang L, Shi J, Pan R, et al (2023)

Distribution of mudsnail Bullacta caurina along smooth cordgrass Spartina alterniflora invasion stages on a coast of the Yellow Sea, China.

Marine environmental research, 192:106248.

On a Chinese coast of the Yellow Sea, a 15-year Spartina alterniflora invasion sequence was classified into five stages: no invasion, initial invasion, immature invasion, mature invasion, and senescing invasion. The effects of invasion on Bullacta caurina distribution were studied. The stem density and vegetation coverage, and sediment organic matter content increased after S. alterniflora invaded, whereas chlorophyll a concentration and porewater salinity decreased. The stem density and vegetation coverage, and porewater salinity were the dominant factors explaining habitat variations. The invasion stages, seasons and their interaction had significant effects on B. caurina density, and the density decreased after initial invasion stage of S. alterniflora. Here, a clumped spatial distribution pattern was detected on B. caurina population. Organic matter content and chlorophyll a concentration were distinguished for predicting B. caurina density. The hydrologic condition, food resources, temperature, and predation risk comprehensively affected B. caurina distribution after S. alterniflora invasion.

RevDate: 2024-02-14
CmpDate: 2024-02-14

Brian JI, JA Catford (2023)

A mechanistic framework of enemy release.

Ecology letters, 26(12):2147-2166.

The enemy release hypothesis (ERH) is the best-known hypothesis explaining high performance (e.g. rapid population growth) of exotic species. However, the current framing of the ERH does not explicitly link evidence of enemy release with exotic performance. This leads to uncertainty regarding the role of enemy release in biological invasions. Here, we demonstrate that the effect of enemy release on exotic performance is the product of three factors: enemy impact, enemy diversity, and host adaptation. These factors are modulated by seven contexts: time since introduction, resource availability, phylogenetic relatedness of exotic and native species, host-enemy asynchronicity, number of introduction events, type of enemy, and strength of growth-defence trade-offs. ERH-focused studies frequently test different factors under different contexts. This can lead to inconsistent findings, which typifies current evidence for the ERH. For example, over 80% of meta-analyses fail to consider ecological contexts which can alter study findings; we demonstrate this by re-analysing a recent ERH synthesis. Structuring the ERH around factors and contexts promotes generalisable predictions about when and where exotic species may benefit from enemy release, empowering effective management. Our mechanistic factor-context framework clearly lays out the evidence required to support the ERH, unifies many enemy-related invasion hypotheses, and enhances predictive capacity.

RevDate: 2024-02-13

Gök Yurttaş A, Çinar K, Khan Z, et al (2024)

Inactivation of Nosema spp. with zinc phthalacyonine.

Journal of invertebrate pathology pii:S0022-2011(24)00017-X [Epub ahead of print].

Most honey bee pathogens, such as Vairimorpha (Nosema), cannot be rapidly and definitively diagnosed in a natural setting, consequently there is typically the spread of these diseases through shared and re-use of beekeeping equipment. Furthermore, there are no viable treatment options available for Nosema spores to aid in managing the spread of this bee disease. We therefore aimed to develop a new method using novel Zinc Phthalacyonine (ZnPc) as a photosensitizer for the photodynamic inactivation of Nosema spores that could be used for the decontamination of beekeeping equipment. Nosema spores were propagated for in vitro testing using four caged Apis mellifera honey bees. The ZnPc treatment was characterized, encapsulated with a liposome, and then used as either a 10 or 100 µM treatment for the freshly harvested Nosema spores, for either a 30 and or 60-minute time period, under either light or dark conditions, in-vitro, in 96-well plates. In the dark treatment, after 30-min, the ZnPc 100 µM treatment, caused a 30 % Nosema mortality, while this increased to 80 % at the same concentration after the light treatment. The high rate of anti-spore effects, in a short period of time, supports the notion that this could be an effective treatment for managing honey bee Nosema infections in the future. Our results also suggest that the photo activation of the treatment could be applied in the field setting and this would increase the sterilization of beekeeping equipment against Nosema.

RevDate: 2024-02-13

Tawiah-Mensah CNL, Addo SO, Ansah-Owusu J, et al (2024)

Molecular identification of cattle ticks in the Greater Accra Region of Ghana: a high occurrence of Rhipicephalus microplus.

Experimental & applied acarology [Epub ahead of print].

Ticks are competent vectors of a wide range of pathogens. They are of veterinary and public health importance as they affect both animal and human health. Transhumance and the transboundary movements of cattle within the West African Sub-region have facilitated the spread of ticks which threatens the introduction of invasive species. Currently, Rhipicephalus microplus have been identified in the Upper East Region of Ghana which could mean a wider distribution of the species across the country due to livestock trade. This study focused on three sites in the Greater Accra Region, which serves as the gateway to receiving most of the cattle transported from the northern regions of Ghana. Ticks were sampled from August 2022 in the wet season to January 2023 in the dry season. Three tick genera were identified: Amblyomma (19.5%), Hyalomma (1.1%), and Rhipicephalus (79.3%) from the 1,489 feeding ticks collected from cattle. Furthermore, Rhipicephalus microplus, Hyalomma rufipes and Amblyomma variegatum were identified molecularly using primers that target the mitochondrial COI gene. There was a significant association between the tick species and seasons (p < 0.001). Finding R. microplus in this study indicates the extent of the spread of this invasive tick species in Ghana and highlights the need for efficient surveillance systems and control measures within the country.

RevDate: 2024-02-13

Botella C, Gaüzère P, O'Connor L, et al (2024)

Land-use intensity influences European tetrapod food webs.

Global change biology, 30(2):e17167.

Land use intensification favours particular trophic groups which can induce architectural changes in food webs. These changes can impact ecosystem functions, services, stability and resilience. However, the imprint of land management intensity on food-web architecture has rarely been characterized across large spatial extent and various land uses. We investigated the influence of land management intensity on six facets of food-web architecture, namely apex and basal species proportions, connectance, omnivory, trophic chain lengths and compartmentalization, for 67,051 European terrestrial vertebrate communities. We also assessed the dependency of this influence of intensification on land use and climate. In addition to more commonly considered climatic factors, the architecture of food webs was notably influenced by land use and management intensity. Intensification tended to strongly lower the proportion of apex predators consistently across contexts. In general, intensification also tended to lower proportions of basal species, favoured mesopredators, decreased food webs compartmentalization whereas it increased their connectance. However, the response of food webs to intensification was different for some contexts. Intensification sharply decreased connectance in Mediterranean and Alpine settlements, and it increased basal tetrapod proportions and compartmentalization in Mediterranean forest and Atlantic croplands. Besides, intensive urbanization especially favoured longer trophic chains and lower omnivory. By favouring mesopredators in most contexts, intensification could undermine basal tetrapods, the cascading effects of which need to be assessed. Our results support the importance of protecting top predators where possible and raise questions about the long-term stability of food webs in the face of human-induced pressures.

RevDate: 2024-02-12

Singh S, Miller CT, Singh P, et al (2024)

A comprehensive review on ecology, life cycle and use of Tecoma stans (bignoneaceae).

Botanical studies, 65(1):6.

Tecoma stans is a widely distributed tall ornamental shrub in the plains of Indian subcontinent and is considered an invasive species across Argentina, Australia, South Africa, Pacific Islands and tropical regions of Asia. Besides having an ornamental significance, T. stans has been extensively investigated for its pharmaceutical applications as a source of bioactive compounds. In addition, the shrub is cultivated commercially as a potted flowering plant. We believe that T. stans, being a hardy, invasive and aggressively growing species, holds a considerable potential and a promising solution for re-greening waste and degraded lands outside its invasive range, due to its wider adaptability and drought tolerant characteristics. The shrub is an excellent source of pollen and nectar, that attracts diverse insect-pollinators and several species of birds. The prudent plantation of this shrub has the potential to restore the ecology of barren landscapes, that can change its perspective of 'being invasive' to 'being ecologically healthy' across the tropical, semi-arid and subtropical regions worldwide. This paper reviews the current updates on ecology, life cycle including morphology, plant growth characteristics, flowering phenology, reproductive biology, breeding system and fruiting of T. stans. In addition, details on insect-pollinator diversity and natural regeneration potential have also been discussed, besides highlighting its therapeutic and landscape use.

RevDate: 2024-02-12

Clements HS, Do Linh San E, Hempson G, et al (2024)

The bii4africa dataset of faunal and floral population intactness estimates across Africa's major land uses.

Scientific data, 11(1):191.

Sub-Saharan Africa is under-represented in global biodiversity datasets, particularly regarding the impact of land use on species' population abundances. Drawing on recent advances in expert elicitation to ensure data consistency, 200 experts were convened using a modified-Delphi process to estimate 'intactness scores': the remaining proportion of an 'intact' reference population of a species group in a particular land use, on a scale from 0 (no remaining individuals) to 1 (same abundance as the reference) and, in rare cases, to 2 (populations that thrive in human-modified landscapes). The resulting bii4africa dataset contains intactness scores representing terrestrial vertebrates (tetrapods: ±5,400 amphibians, reptiles, birds, mammals) and vascular plants (±45,000 forbs, graminoids, trees, shrubs) in sub-Saharan Africa across the region's major land uses (urban, cropland, rangeland, plantation, protected, etc.) and intensities (e.g., large-scale vs smallholder cropland). This dataset was co-produced as part of the Biodiversity Intactness Index for Africa Project. Additional uses include assessing ecosystem condition; rectifying geographic/taxonomic biases in global biodiversity indicators and maps; and informing the Red List of Ecosystems.

RevDate: 2024-02-12

Green ES, Chan HY, Frost E, et al (2024)

Recent advances in reproductive research in Australia and New Zealand: highlights from the Annual Meeting of the Society for Reproductive Biology, 2022.

Reproduction, fertility, and development pii:RD23213 [Epub ahead of print].

In 2022, the Society for Reproductive Biology came together in Christchurch New Zealand (NZ), for its first face-to-face meeting since the global COVID-19 pandemic. The meeting showcased recent advancements in reproductive research across a diverse range of themes relevant to human health and fertility, exotic species conservation, and agricultural breeding practices. Here, we highlight the key advances presented across the main themes of the meeting, including advances in addressing opportunities and challenges in reproductive health related to First Nations people in Australia and NZ; increasing conservation success of exotic species, including ethical management of invasive species; improvements in our understanding of developmental biology, specifically seminal fluid signalling, ovarian development and effects of environmental impacts such as endocrine-disrupting chemicals; and leveraging scientific breakthroughs in reproductive engineering to drive solutions for fertility, including in assisted reproductive technologies in humans and agricultural industries, and for regenerative medicine.

RevDate: 2024-02-12

Phillips EW, Bottacini D, Schoonhoven ANM, et al (2024)

Limited effects of culling on the behavior of invasive lionfish (Pterois miles) in the Mediterranean.

Journal of fish biology [Epub ahead of print].

Invasive species pose serious threats to ecosystems. To reduce ecological and economic consequences of invasions, efforts are made to control invaders and evaluating the effects of such efforts is paramount. Lionfishes (Pterois volitans and Pterois miles) are native to the Indo-Pacific Ocean and pose a major threat to local ecosystems in the invaded Atlantic and Mediterranean. Culling via spearfishing is a widespread measure to limit lionfish population size in invaded ranges. However, like most hunted fishes, lionfish alter their behavior after repeated culling, potentially decreasing the effectiveness of future culls. Previous studies on lionfish in the Caribbean have shown that lionfish are less bold after repeated culling. However, the impact of culling on lionfish in their newest invasive range, the Mediterranean, remains enigmatic. To determine the behavioral changes in response to culling in this second area of invasion, we tested for effects of culling on the behavior of lionfish in Cyprus, a region heavily impacted by the lionfish invasion in the Mediterranean. We compared the response of lionfish to an approaching free diver holding a metal pole (imitating a spear fisher) between protected areas where spearfishing is restricted and areas where culls are frequently conducted. We also assessed whether activity, hiding pattern, and site fidelity differed between these culled and unculled sites. Overall, we found limited effects of culling on the traits measured, indicating surprising resistance to culling-induced behavioral changes in Mediterranean lionfish. Future studies should monitor invasive lionfish population densities and the effects of culling in more detail to tailor management plans and reduce the negative effects of these fish in specific invaded ranges.

RevDate: 2024-02-12

Liu D, Liu M, Ju R, et al (2024)

Rapid seedling emergence of invasive Phytolacca americana is related to higher soluble sugars produced by starch metabolism and photosynthesis compared to native P. acinosa.

Frontiers in plant science, 15:1255698.

Seedling emergence is an essential event in the life cycle of plants. Most invasive plants have an advantage in population colonization over native congeners. However, differential seedling emergence between invasive plants and native congeners, especially their mechanisms, have rarely been explored. In this study, we show that the seedlings of invasive Phytolacca americana emerge faster compared to native P. acinosa. Genome-wide transcriptomes of initially germinated seeds versus seedlings at 4 days after germination (DAG) suggested that differentially expressed genes (DEGs) in the photosynthesis-antenna proteins pathway were up-regulated in both P. americana and P. acinosa, while DEGs in starch and sucrose metabolism were significantly down-regulated in P. americana. Gene expression analysis indicated that photosynthesis-related DEGs reached their highest level at 3 DAG in P. americana, while they peaked at 4 DAG in P. acinosa. We also identified one β-amylase gene in P. americana (PameAMYB) that showed the highest expression at 1 DAG, and two β-amylase genes in P. acinosa that expressed lower than PameAMYB at 0 and 1 DAG. Enzymatic activity of β-amylases also suggested that P. americana had the highest activity at 1 DAG, which was earlier than P. acinosa (at 4 DAG). Soluble sugars, the main source of energy for seedling emergence, were showed higher in P. americana than in P. acinosa, and reached the highest at 4 DAG that positively affected by photosynthesis. These results indicate that the rapid seedling emergence of invasive P. americana benefited from the high soluble sugar content produced by starch metabolism and photosynthesis. Altogether, this work contributes to our fundamental knowledge on physiological and molecular mechanisms for plant invasion success.

RevDate: 2024-02-12

Petit S, Scanlon AT, Naikatini A, et al (2024)

Dillenia (Dilleniaceae) pollen heteromorphy and presentation, and implications for pollination by bats.

Ecology and evolution, 14(2):e10997.

Bat pollination of Dillenia in Fiji, a genus that was presumed to be pollinated by bees, posits that other Dillenia species may be bat-pollinated, with implications for conservation and the understanding of angiosperm evolution. Botanical descriptions of some corolla behaviours ('falling as a whole') suggest bat removal of permanently closed corollas, as in D. biflora. Considering the remoteness of species of interest, we reviewed some Dillenia floral traits to hypothesise what they may mean for bat pollination of the genus. We investigated D. biflora pollen grains apertures and reviewed Dillenia literature concerning corolla behaviour and colour, and pollen apertures and presentation, including pores and staminodes. Our samples had dramatically different ratios of tricolpate to tetracolpate pollen grains, a trait that does not exclude pollination by bees. Petal colour polymorphism occurs, with mixed colours proportionately less common in flowers with corollas that open. The proportion of species with staminodes did not differ between those presumed to be pollinated by bats and others, but anthers of the former were significantly more likely to have apical pores, and stamens all had similar length or were slightly longer in the middle, whereas stamens in two distinct groups occurred in 55% of bee-pollinated species. Pollen heteromorphy may facilitate pollination by different taxa in tropical environments. However, anther apical pores and stamen uniformity are more likely to be associated with bat-pollinated species than are other morphologies. Dillenia could be a useful model to examine evolutionary aspects of colour, heteranthery, staminodes and pollen heteromorphy. Only field work will verify bat pollination and the implications of bat dependence for Dillenia species.

RevDate: 2024-02-12

Rana SK, Dangwal B, Rawat GS, et al (2024)

Constructing a database of alien plants in the Himalaya to test patterns structuring diversity.

Ecology and evolution, 14(2):e10884.

Differences in the number of alien plant species in different locations may reflect climatic and other controls that similarly affect native species and/or propagule pressure accompanied with delayed spread from the point of introduction. We set out to examine these alternatives for Himalayan plants, in a phylogenetic framework. We build a database of alien plant distributions for the Himalaya. Focusing on the well-documented regions of Jammu & Kashmir (west) and Bhutan (east) we compare alien and native species for (1) richness patterns, (2) degree of phylogenetic clustering, (3) the extent to which species-poor regions are subsets of species-rich regions and (4) continental and climatic affinities/source. We document 1470 alien species (at least 600 naturalised), which comprise ~14% of the vascular plants known from the Himalaya. Alien plant species with tropical affinities decline in richness with elevation and species at high elevations form a subset of those at lower elevations, supporting location of introduction as an important driver of alien plant richness patterns. Separately, elevations which are especially rich in native plant species are also rich in alien plant species, suggesting an important role for climate (high productivity) in determining both native and alien richness. We find no support for the proposition that variance in human disturbance or numbers of native species correlate with alien distributions. Results imply an ongoing expansion of alien species from low elevation sources, some of which are highly invasive.

RevDate: 2024-02-12
CmpDate: 2024-02-12

Rew-Duffy M, Cameron SF, Freeman NJ, et al (2020)

Greater agility increases probability of survival in the endangered northern quoll.

The Journal of experimental biology, 223(Pt 15): pii:jeb.218503.

Introduced predators combined with habitat loss and modification are threatening biodiversity worldwide, particularly the 'critical weight range' (CWR) mammals of Australia. In order to mitigate the impacts of invasive predators on native species in different landscapes, we must understand how the prey's morphology and performance determine their survival. Here, we evaluated how phenotypic traits related to escape performance predict the probability of survival for an endangered CWR mammal, the northern quoll (Dasyurus hallucatus). We measured mass, body size, body shape, body condition and age, as well as maximum sprint speed, acceleration and agility of female quolls over two consecutive years. Those with higher body condition and agility around a 135 deg corner were more likely to survive their first 21 months of life but were not more likely to survive after this period. No other morphological or performance traits affected survival. Heavier second-year individuals were more agile than first years but second years experienced higher mortality rates throughout the year. Females with higher body condition and agility around a 135 deg corner tended to have shorter limbs and feet but longer heads. Our findings suggest that higher body condition and agility are advantageous for survival in female northern quolls. These results can be used to develop predictive models of predator-prey interactions based on performance capacity and how performance is affected by habitat, aiding conservation efforts to predict and manage the impact of introduced predators on native species.

RevDate: 2024-02-10

Kozhar O, Burns KS, Schoettle AW, et al (2024)

Distribution of Cronartium x flexili, an interspecific hybrid of two fungal tree rust pathogens, in subalpine forest ecosystems of western USA.

Fungal biology, 128(1):1578-1589.

Interspecific hybridization plays a key role in the evolution of novel fungal pathogens, and when it occurs between native and invasive species, can lead to potentially serious consequences. In this study, we examined the temporal and spatial distribution of a recently detected hybrid (Cronartium x flexili) of two tree pathogens, invasive to North America Cronartium ribicola and native Cronartium comandrae. In total, 726 and 1452 aecia from 178 Pinus contorta ssp. latifolia and 357 Pinus flexilis trees were collected from 26 sites in four national forests in 2019-2021. Using morphological and molecular analyses, 71 aecia collected from 25 P. flexilis trees had intermediate morphology and contained heterozygous SNPs in two genomic regions. Population analyses revealed the presence of multiple hybrid genotypes randomly distributed among sites and years. No aecia from P. contorta ssp. latifolia were identified as hybrids suggesting unidirectional gene flow from native C. comandrae to invasive C. ribicola. Aeciospores from 2 hybrid aecia produced urediniospores on Ribes nigrum. Overall, these results suggest that, even though low in frequency, C. x flexili is persistent in the region and has pathogenic potential. Hybrid expansion into the large range of susceptible pines could have cascading impacts on forest health.

RevDate: 2024-02-10

Alarcón-Elbal PM, Suárez-Balseiro C, De Souza C, et al (2024)

History of research on Aedes albopictus (Diptera: Culicidae) in Europe: approaching the world's most invasive mosquito species from a bibliometric perspective.

Parasitology research, 123(2):130.

The Asian tiger mosquito, Aedes albopictus (Skuse), is an invasive species native to Southeast Asia. This insect, which is an important vector of arbovirus such as dengue, Zika, and chikungunya, has spread rapidly to several parts of the world over the last few decades. This study employed a bibliometric approach to explore, for the first time, Ae. albopictus research activity and output in Europe. We used the Web of Science Core Collection data source to characterize the current scientific research. A total of 903 publications from 1973 to 2022 were retrieved. We also provided a comprehensive analysis by year of publication; distribution by most productive European countries, institutions, and authors; collaboration networks; research topics; most productive journals; and most cited publications. Results showed a notable increase in the number of studies after the chikungunya virus outbreak in Northeast Italy in 2007. More than 60% of these publications across the entire European continent originated from France and Italy. Research output related to 'population and community ecology' topics was significantly high. The most common type of collaboration was national, which occurred between institutions in the same European country. By providing an overview of Ae. albopictus research in Europe, this work contributes to upcoming debates, decision-making, planning on research and development, and public health strategies on the continent and worldwide.

RevDate: 2024-02-10

Neagu AN, Whitham D, Bruno P, et al (2024)

Onco-Breastomics: An Eco-Evo-Devo Holistic Approach.

International journal of molecular sciences, 25(3): pii:ijms25031628.

Known as a diverse collection of neoplastic diseases, breast cancer (BC) can be hyperbolically characterized as a dynamic pseudo-organ, a living organism able to build a complex, open, hierarchically organized, self-sustainable, and self-renewable tumor system, a population, a species, a local community, a biocenosis, or an evolving dynamical ecosystem (i.e., immune or metabolic ecosystem) that emphasizes both developmental continuity and spatio-temporal change. Moreover, a cancer cell community, also known as an oncobiota, has been described as non-sexually reproducing species, as well as a migratory or invasive species that expresses intelligent behavior, or an endangered or parasite species that fights to survive, to optimize its features inside the host's ecosystem, or that is able to exploit or to disrupt its host circadian cycle for improving the own proliferation and spreading. BC tumorigenesis has also been compared with the early embryo and placenta development that may suggest new strategies for research and therapy. Furthermore, BC has also been characterized as an environmental disease or as an ecological disorder. Many mechanisms of cancer progression have been explained by principles of ecology, developmental biology, and evolutionary paradigms. Many authors have discussed ecological, developmental, and evolutionary strategies for more successful anti-cancer therapies, or for understanding the ecological, developmental, and evolutionary bases of BC exploitable vulnerabilities. Herein, we used the integrated framework of three well known ecological theories: the Bronfenbrenner's theory of human development, the Vannote's River Continuum Concept (RCC), and the Ecological Evolutionary Developmental Biology (Eco-Evo-Devo) theory, to explain and understand several eco-evo-devo-based principles that govern BC progression. Multi-omics fields, taken together as onco-breastomics, offer better opportunities to integrate, analyze, and interpret large amounts of complex heterogeneous data, such as various and big-omics data obtained by multiple investigative modalities, for understanding the eco-evo-devo-based principles that drive BC progression and treatment. These integrative eco-evo-devo theories can help clinicians better diagnose and treat BC, for example, by using non-invasive biomarkers in liquid-biopsies that have emerged from integrated omics-based data that accurately reflect the biomolecular landscape of the primary tumor in order to avoid mutilating preventive surgery, like bilateral mastectomy. From the perspective of preventive, personalized, and participatory medicine, these hypotheses may help patients to think about this disease as a process governed by natural rules, to understand the possible causes of the disease, and to gain control on their own health.

RevDate: 2024-02-10

Guo W, Li S, A Zhan (2024)

eDNA-Based Early Detection Illustrates Rapid Spread of the Non-Native Golden Mussel Introduced into Beijing via Water Diversion.

Animals : an open access journal from MDPI, 14(3): pii:ani14030399.

The world's largest water diversion, the South-to-North Water Transfer Project (SNWTP) in China, has created an "invasion highway" to introduce invasive golden mussels (Limnoperna fortunei) from the Yangtze River basin to Beijing. To examine the spread and colonization patterns of this newly introduced invasive species, we conducted comprehensive environmental DNA (eDNA)-based early detection and conventional field surveys across all water bodies in five river basins in Beijing from 2020 to 2023. Our results indicated a rapid spread over the past four years. Among the 130 tested sites, the number of sites with positive signals from eDNA analysis exhibited an annual increase: Commencing with four infested sites identified through field surveys in 2019, eDNA analysis detected an additional 13, 11, and 10 positive sites in 2020, 2021, and 2022, respectively, and a substantial rise comprising an additional 28 sites in 2023. Conventional field surveys detected mussels 1-3 years later than eDNA-based analysis at 16 sites. Across all 16 sites, we detected a low population density ranging from 1 to 30 individuals/m[2]. These findings collectively indicate that the invasions by golden mussels in Beijing are still in their early stages. To date, golden mussels have successfully colonized four out of the five investigated river basins, including the Jiyun River (22.2% positive sites), North Canal River (59.6% positive sites), Chaobai River (40% positive sites), and Yongding River (63.6% positive sites), with the North Canal River and Yongding River being the most heavily infested. Currently, only the Daqing River basin remains uninfested. Given the significant number of infested sites and the ongoing transport of large new propagules via SNWTP, further rapid spread and colonization are anticipated across aquatic ecosystems in Beijing and beyond. Consequently, we call for the proper implementation of effective management strategies, encompassing early detection, risk assessment, and the use of appropriate control measures to mitigate the potential ecological and economic damages in invaded ecosystems.

RevDate: 2024-02-10

Nie X, Huang C, Wei J, et al (2024)

Effects of Photoperiod on Survival, Growth, Physiological, and Biochemical Indices of Redclaw Crayfish (Cherax quadricarinatus) Juveniles.

Animals : an open access journal from MDPI, 14(3): pii:ani14030411.

Through a 30-day experiment, this study investigated the effects of five photoperiods (0L:24D, 6L:18D, 12L:12D, 18L:6D, and 24L:0D) on the survival, enzyme activity, body color, and growth-related gene expression of redclaw crayfish (Cherax quadricarinatus) juveniles. The results showed that C. quadricarinatus juveniles under 18L:6D and 24L:0D photoperiods exhibited the highest survival rate, which was significantly higher than the survival rates of juveniles under the other three photoperiods (p < 0.05). However, the 0L:24D group had the highest final body weight and weight gain rate, significantly surpassing those of the 12L:12D, 18L:6D, and 24L:0D groups (p < 0.05). Regarding enzyme activity and hormone levels, juveniles under the 18L:6D photoperiod exhibited relatively higher activity of superoxide dismutase (SOD), acid phosphatase (ACP), and lysozyme (LZM) enzymes than those under other photoperiods, but their levels of melatonin and cortisol were relatively low. In addition, the 24L:0D group showed the highest malondialdehyde (MDA) content. Analysis of gene expression levels revealed that retinoid X receptor (RXR) and α-amylase (α-AMY) genes in C. quadricarinatus juveniles exhibited significantly higher expression levels under the 18L:6D photoperiod than those under the other four photoperiods (p < 0.05). With increasing daylight exposure, the body color of C. quadricarinatus changed from pale blue to yellow-brown. In summary, C. quadricarinatus juveniles achieved high survival rates, good growth performance, strong antioxidant stress response, and immune defense capabilities under an 18 h photoperiod. Therefore, in the industrial seedling cultivation of redclaw crayfish, it is recommended to provide 18 h of daily light. Further, the study demonstrated the ability to manipulate the body color of C. quadricarinatus through controlled artificial photoperiods. These findings provide essential technical parameters needed for the industrial cultivation of C. quadricarinatus juveniles.

RevDate: 2024-02-10

Hall RM, Urban B, Durec N, et al (2024)

Heat Treatment of Seeds to Control Invasive Common Ragweed (Ambrosia artemisiifolia), Narrow-Leaved Ragwort (Senecio inaequidens) and Giant Hogweed (Heracleum mantegazzianum).

Plants (Basel, Switzerland), 13(3): pii:plants13030341.

The intended or unintentional transport of soil material contaminated with weed seeds is one of the most important drivers in the spreading dynamics of invasive alien plants (IAPs). This phenomenon can be observed at any kind of construction site. Typical transfer of soil contaminated with IAP seeds can be observed along with road construction (soil translocation) or road maintenance services (deposit of mown plant biomass). Thus, an effective inactivation of these seeds by heating can avoid the spread of IAPs substantially. In the present study, the effects of various thermal control techniques (dry air heating and wet heating with hot steam, hot water, and hot foam) on seed survival of the widespread European IAPs common ragweed (Ambrosia artemisiifolia), narrow-leaved ragwort (Senecio inaequidens), and giant hogweed (Heracleum mantegazzianum) are discussed. Dry and wet seeds which were either uncovered or covered with soil were tested for survival at different treatment temperatures and different exposure times. Results revealed that particularly dry seeds of all three species could withstand temperatures of 100 °C for at least 6 h in climate chambers. Dry seeds of common ragweed and narrow-leaved ragwort survived exposure times of up to 48 h. Wet seeds were significantly more susceptible to heat treatments. Giant hogweed seeds were completely killed after 12 h at 70 °C. The exposure of IAP seeds to hot water was generally more effective than the treatment with hot steam. The treatment with hot foam was only effective when seeds were lying unprotected on the soil surface. Dry seeds of all the three species survived hot foam application in the field when they were covered by vegetation and leaf litter or soil. Due to the robustness of the seeds, a preventive management of IAPs by an efficient control before seeds formation is substantial to avoid their further dispersal.

RevDate: 2024-02-09

Sun C, Hassin Y, Boonman A, et al (2024)

Species and habitat specific changes in bird activity in an urban environment during Covid 19 lockdown.

eLife, 12: pii:88064.

Covid-19 lockdowns provided ecologists with a rare opportunity to examine how animals behave when humans are absent. Indeed many studies reported various effects of lockdowns on animal activity, especially in urban areas and other human-dominated habitats. We explored how Covid-19 lockdowns in Israel have influenced bird activity in an urban environment by using continuous acoustic recordings to monitor three common bird species that differ in their level of adaptation to the urban ecosystem: (1) the hooded crow, an urban exploiter, which depends heavily on anthropogenic resources; (2) the rose-ringed parakeet, an invasive alien species that has adapted to exploit human resources; and (3) the graceful prinia, an urban adapter, which is relatively shy of humans and can be found in urban habitats with shrubs and prairies. Acoustic recordings provided continuous monitoring of bird activity without an effect of the observer on the animal. We performed dense sampling of a 1.3 square km area in northern Tel-Aviv by placing 17 recorders for more than a month in different micro-habitats within this region including roads, residential areas and urban parks. We monitored both lockdown and no-lockdown periods. We portray a complex dynamic system where the activity of specific bird species depended on many environmental parameters and decreases or increases in a habitat-dependent manner during lockdown. Specifically, urban exploiter species decreased their activity in most urban habitats during lockdown, while human adapter species increased their activity during lockdown especially in parks where humans were absent. Our results also demonstrate the value of different habitats within urban environments for animal activity, specifically highlighting the importance of urban parks. These species- and habitat-specific changes in activity might explain the contradicting results reported by others who have not performed a habitat specific analysis.

RevDate: 2024-02-09

Sharma HP, Katuwal HB, Regmi S, et al (2024)

Population and conservation threats to the vulnerable Sarus crane Grus antigone in Nepal.

Ecology and evolution, 14(2):e10929 pii:ECE310929.

Globally, biodiversity is declining due to habitat loss and degradation, over-exploitation, climate change, invasive species, pollution, and infrastructure development. These threats affect the populations of large waterbird species, such as Sarus crane (Grus antigone), which inhabits agricultural-wetland ecosystems. Despite the burgeoning built-up areas and diminishing agricultural and wetland spaces, scant research investigates the impact of these changing land uses on the globally vulnerable Sarus crane in Nepal. During the pre-breeding season from April to June 2023, our comprehensive study meticulously scrutinized Sarus crane population status and factors associated with the occurrences and conservation challenges across 10 specific districts of Nepal. Our study documented a total of 690 individuals of Sarus cranes in five districts. The Lumbini Province has 685 individuals, occupying 11 roosting sites. Conversely, the remaining five districts have no Sarus cranes presence during this period. Wetland, farmland and built-up areas exhibited a significantly positive influence on Sarus crane occurrences in the Lumbini Province. Additionally, we recorded 47 fatalities of Sarus cranes over the past 13 years in the Lumbini Province due to electrocution and collisions. Our study provides a baseline dataset crucial for developing conservation policies, particularly during the dry season when Sarus crane populations tend to congregate in larger flocks. The adaptation of the Sarus crane to urbanized landscapes exposes them to several anthropogenic threats in the coming days. Therefore, protecting wetlands and farmland areas and adopting transboundary conservation approaches are imperative for the long-term conservation of the Sarus crane and its habitat.

RevDate: 2024-02-09

Borgelt J, Dorber M, Géron C, et al (2024)

What Is the Impact of Accidentally Transporting Terrestrial Alien Species? A New Life Cycle Impact Assessment Model.

Environmental science & technology [Epub ahead of print].

Alien species form one of the main threats to global biodiversity. Although Life Cycle Assessment attempts to holistically assess environmental impacts of products and services across value chains, ecological impacts of the introduction of alien species are so far not assessed in Life Cycle Impact Assessment. Here, we developed country-to-country-specific characterization factors, expressed as the time-integrated potentially disappeared fraction (PDF; regional and global) of native terrestrial species due to alien species introductions per unit of goods transported [kg] between two countries. The characterization factors were generated by analyzing global data on first records of alien species, native species distributions, and their threat status, as well as bilateral trade partnerships from 1870-2019. The resulting characterization factors vary over several orders of magnitude, indicating that impact greatly varies per transportation route and trading partner. We showcase the applicability and relevance of the characterization factors for transporting 1 metric ton of freight to France from China, South Africa, and Madagascar. The results suggest that the introduction of alien species can be more damaging for terrestrial biodiversity as climate change impacts during the international transport of commodities.

RevDate: 2024-02-08

Robeck P, Essl F, van Kleunen M, et al (2024)

Invading plants remain undetected in a lag phase while they explore suitable climates.

Nature ecology & evolution [Epub ahead of print].

Successful alien species may experience a period of quiescence, known as the lag phase, before becoming invasive and widespread. The existence of lags introduces severe uncertainty in risk analyses of aliens as the present state of species is a poor predictor of future distributions, invasion success and impact. Predicting a species' ability to invade and pose negative impacts requires a quantitative understanding of the commonality and magnitude of lags, environmental factors and mechanisms likely to terminate lag. Using herbarium and climate data, we analysed over 5,700 time series (species × regions) in 3,505 naturalized plant species from nine regions in temperate and tropical climates to quantify lags and test whether there have been shifts in the species' climatic space during the transition from the lag phase to the expansion phase. Lags were identified in 35% of the assessed invasion events. We detected phylogenetic signals for lag phases in temperate climate regions and that annual self-fertilizing species were less likely to experience lags. Where lags existed, they had an average length of 40 years and a maximum of 320 years. Lengthy lags (>100 years) were more likely to occur in perennial plants and less frequent in self-pollinating species. For 98% of the species with a lag phase, the climate spaces sampled during the lag period differed from those in the expansion phase based on the assessment of centroid shifts or degree of climate space overlap. Our results highlight the importance of functional traits for the onset of the expansion phase and suggest that climate discovery may play a role in terminating the lag phase. However, other possibilities, such as sampling issues and climate niche shifts, cannot be ruled out.

RevDate: 2024-02-08

Trouvé R, AP Robinson (2024)

Efficient border biosecurity inspection leverages superspreading to reduce biological invasion risk.

Risk analysis : an official publication of the Society for Risk Analysis [Epub ahead of print].

Biological invasions are a growing threat to biodiversity, food security, and economies. Rising pressure from increased global trade requires improving border inspection efficiency. Here, we depart from the conventional consignment-by-consignment approach advocated in current inspection standards. Instead, we suggest a broader perspective: evaluating border inspection regimes based on their ability to reduce propagule pressure across entire pathways. Additionally, we demonstrate that most biosecurity pathways exhibit superspreading behavior, that is, consignments from the same pathway have varying infestation rates and contain rare right-tail events (also called overdispersion). We show that greater overdispersion leads to more pronounced diminishing returns, with consequences on the optimal allocation of sampling effort. We leverage these two insights to develop a simple and efficient border inspection regime that can significantly reduce propagule pressure compared to current standards. Our analysis revealed that consignment size is a key driver of biosecurity risk and that sampling proportional to the square root of consignment size is near optimal. In testing, our framework reduced propagule pressure by 31 to 38% compared to current standards. We also identified opportunities to further improve inspection efficiency by considering additional pathway characteristics (i.e., overdispersion parameters, zero inflation, relative risk, sampling cost, detectability) and developed solutions for these more complex scenarios. We anticipate our result will mitigate biological invasion risk with significant implications for biodiversity conservation, food security, and economies worldwide.

RevDate: 2024-02-08

Mathieu J, Reynolds JW, Fragoso C, et al (2024)

Multiple invasion routes have led to the pervasive introduction of earthworms in North America.

Nature ecology & evolution [Epub ahead of print].

Soil-dwelling organisms play a key role in ecosystem functioning and the delivery of ecosystem services. As a consequence, soil taxa such as earthworms are iconic in good land management practices. However, their introduction in places where species did not co-evolve with them can trigger catastrophic changes. This issue has been largely ignored so far in nature management policies because of the positive image of soil taxa and the lack of knowledge of the magnitude of soil fauna introductions outside their native range. Here we address this gap with a large spatio-temporal database of introduced alien earthworms. We show that 70 alien earthworm species have colonized the North American continent. They have larger geographical ranges than native species and novel ecological functions, representing a serious threat to the biodiversity and functioning of native ecosystems. The probably continuous introduction of alien earthworms, from a variety of sources and introduction pathways, into many distant and often empty niches, contrasts with the classical patterns of invasions in most aboveground taxa. This suggests that earthworms, and probably other soil organisms, constitute a major but overlooked pool of invasive species that are not adequately managed by existing control and mitigation strategies.

RevDate: 2024-02-08

Wang J, Wang S, Okyere SK, et al (2024)

Ageratina adenophora causes intestinal integrity damage in goats via the activation of the MLCK/ROCK signaling pathway.

Toxicon : official journal of the International Society on Toxinology pii:S0041-0101(24)00205-8 [Epub ahead of print].

As a global toxin invasive species, the whole herb of Ageratina adenophora (A. adenophora) contains various sesquiterpenes, which can cause various degrees of toxic reactions characterized by inflammatory damage when ingested by animals. Current studies on the toxicity of A. adenophora have focused on parenchymatous organs such as the liver and spleen, but few studies have been conducted on the intestine as the organ that is first exposed to A. adenophora and digests and absorbs its toxic components. In this study, after feeding goats with 40 % A. adenophora herb powder for 90 d, we found that the intestinal structure of goats showed pathological changes characterized, and the damage to the small intestinal segments was more severe than that of the large intestine. The MLCK/ROCK signaling pathway was activated, the cytoskeleton underwent centripetal contraction, the composition of tight junctions between intestinal epithelial cells was altered table, Occludin, Claudin-1 and Zonula occluden (ZO-1) amount was decreased, and the intestinal mechanical barrier was disrupted. The intestinal damage markers diamine oxidase (DAO) and D-lactate (D-LA) levels were elevated. In addition, we also found that intestinal bacteria translocate and enter the portal vein to colonize the liver and mesenteric lymph nodes. The expression of intestinal pro-inflammatory factors and anti-inflammatory factors was changed, the intestinal immune function was disrupted. The present study is the first to analyze the mechanism of poisoning of A. adenophora from the intestinal tract in compound-gastric animals.

RevDate: 2024-02-08

Baliwe NG, Pfaff MC, GM Branch (2024)

Effects of harvesting and an invasive mussel on intertidal rocky shore communities based on historical and spatial comparisons.

PloS one, 19(2):e0294404 pii:PONE-D-23-08255.

Intertidal rocky shores are the most accessible marine habitats and therefore heavily impacted by harvesting. In recent years, they have also been increasingly invaded by alien species, which compounds the effects of harvesting on rocky shore community composition and functioning. Recent survey data, combined with historical data from 1970, were used to assess temporal changes over the intervening period in rocky shore communities at two sites (Wireless Point and Wireless Island). Three kinds of changes emerged: (1) the appearance of alien species; (2) the effects of increased harvesting pressure; and (3) the direct and indirect effects of these changes on other species. A striking result was transformation of mid-shore zones on exposed shores by the appearance of the invasive Mediterranean mussel Mytilus galloprovincialis, and the indirect effects of this on the demography and vertical zonation patterns of the granular limpet Scutellastra granularis. Adult limpets have become excluded by the mussel, whereas juveniles find a secondary home on the shells of the mussel and their abundance has increased. To further disentangle the effects of harvesting from those of alien invasions, a spatial comparison was made between two currently unharvested no-take sites (Scarborough South and Scarborough North) and two regularly harvested sites (Kommetjie and Wireless Point). Harvesting has substantially depleted the granite limpet Cymbula granatina and Argenville's limpet Scutellastra argenvillei. This has led to the proliferation of opportunistic seaweeds, such as Ulva spp. The dual effects of alien invasive species and over-harvesting have major ecosystem effects but do not necessarily diminish biodiversity because the alternative habitats that have developed provide opportunities for colonisation by additional species.

RevDate: 2024-02-08

Zini V, Wäber K, PM Dolman (2023)

Relative influence of inter- and intraspecific competition in an ungulate assemblage modified by introduced species.

Journal of mammalogy, 104(4):879-891 pii:gyad030.

Interspecific competition from introduced and naturally colonizing species has potential to affect resident populations, but demographic consequences for vertebrates have rarely been tested. We tested hypotheses of interspecific and intraspecific competition for density, body mass, and fertility of adult female Roe Deer (Capreolus capreolus) across a heterogeneous forest landscape occupied by two introduced deer species: Mediterranean Fallow Deer (Dama dama); and subtropical Reeve's Muntjac (Muntiacus reevesi). Species-specific deer densities in buffers around culling locations of 492 adult female Roe Deer, sampled over seven years, were extracted from spatially explicit models calibrated through annual nocturnal distance sampling. Roe Deer fertility and body mass were related to species-specific deer densities and extent of arable lands using piecewise structural equation models. Reeve's Muntjac density was lower at higher Fallow Deer densities, suggesting interspecific avoidance via interference competition, but greater when buffers included more arable land. Roe Deer body mass was marginally greater when buffers included more arable land and was independent of deer densities. However, Roe Deer fertility was unrelated to female body mass, suggesting that fertility benefits exceeded an asymptotic threshold of body condition in this low-density population. However, Roe Deer fertility was slightly greater rather than reduced in areas with greater local Roe Deer density, suggesting negligible intraspecific competition. In contrast, Roe Deer was less fertile in areas with greater Reeve's Muntjac densities; thus, interspecific exceeded intraspecific competition in this assemblage. In contrast, we found no support for any effects of Fallow Deer density on Roe Deer density, body mass, or fertility. Complex networks of interspecific competition operating in this deer assemblage include: interspecific interference from Fallow Deer exceeded habitat effects for Reeve's Muntjac; and interspecific competition from introduced, smaller sedentary Reeve's Muntjac reduced fertility, unlike intraspecific, or potential competition with larger, more mobile, Fallow Deer for native Roe Deer. Mechanisms driving Roe Deer fertility may include interspecific behavioral interference or stress-resource depletion is considered less likely because Roe Deer fertility was independent of body mass. Findings emphasize the importance of ensuring appropriate management strategies for controlling invasive species.

RevDate: 2024-02-08

Zhao W (2024)

Meeting the challenges of invasive alien species.

National science review, 11(3):nwae017 pii:nwae017.

Here we report the Assessment Report on Invasive Alien Species and their Control released by IPBES, and the status of IAS in China.

RevDate: 2024-02-08

de Necker L, van Rooyen D, Gerber R, et al (2024)

Effects of river regulation on aquatic invertebrate community composition: A comparative analysis in two southern African rivers.

Ecology and evolution, 14(2):e10963 pii:ECE310963.

While natural floods play a crucial role in shaping the composition of aquatic communities, the most rivers worldwide are regulated or dammed for anthropogenic purposes, resulting in alterations to the biological and chemical composition of these ecosystems. Studies have demonstrated various negative effects of river regulation on aquatic invertebrate communities globally. However, there is a scarcity of research in Africa, despite its vulnerability to anthropogenic impacts. This study aimed to compare aquatic invertebrate communities in the Phongolo River, an impacted regulated river, and the Usuthu River, a less impacted unregulated river, in South Africa. It further aimed to ascertain whether Lake Nyamithi, a naturally saline lake receiving water from both of the aforementioned systems, exhibited a stronger similarity to one of the two rivers in terms of its aquatic invertebrate composition. Aquatic invertebrate and water samples were collected from 2012 to 2018 over several surveys. The Usuthu River demonstrated a diverse and sensitive aquatic invertebrate community, emphasising its high conservation value. The Phongolo River demonstrated effects of anthropogenic impact, with taxa more resilient to changes in water quality and flow compared to the Usuthu River. Mismanagement and excessive water use may lead to the loss of any remaining sensitive aquatic invertebrate communities in this river. The presence of invasive molluscan in the Phongolo River and Lake Nyamithi also poses a threat to the native aquatic invertebrate communities. These invasive species are currently absent from the Usuthu River although other invasive species, such as the Australian redclaw crayfish, are found in both river systems. Lake Nyamithi displayed a unique aquatic invertebrate community, distinct from both rivers and their floodplains. This study provides important baseline information on the Usuthu River's aquatic invertebrates and emphasises the need to maintain adequate water flow in rivers and floodplains to protect biodiversity and sensitive species.

RevDate: 2024-02-08

Short AEZ, JC Girón (2023)

Revision of the Neotropical water scavenger beetle genus Novochares Girón & Short (Coleoptera, Hydrophilidae, Acidocerinae).

ZooKeys, 1171:1-112 pii:104142.

The water scavenger beetle genus Novochares Girón & Short, 2021 is revised using a combination of adult morphological and DNA sequence data. Thirty-eight new species are described: Novocharesaperitosp. nov. (Bolivia), N.bacasp. nov. (Brazil, Ecuador, Peru, Suriname), N.bidenssp. nov. (Brazil), N.bisinuatussp. nov. (Brazil), N.clavierisp. nov. (Brazil, French Guiana, Peru), N.dantasp. nov. (Venezuela), N.dentatussp. nov. (Ecuador, Venezuela), N.dicranospathussp. nov. (Peru), N.duosp. nov. (Brazil, French Guiana, Guyana, Suriname, Venezuela), N.fernandezaesp. nov. (Brazil, Peru, Venezuela), N.florifersp. nov. (Brazil), N.furcatussp. nov. (Brazil), N.garciaisp. nov. (Venezuela), N.garfosp. nov. (Brazil), N.geminussp. nov. (Brazil), N.kawsaysp. nov. (Ecuador, Peru), N.latussp. nov. (Brazil), N.minorsp. nov. (Peru, Suriname, Venezuela), N.mojenossp. nov. (Bolivia), N.murasp. nov. (Brazil), N.orchissp. nov. (Brazil, French Guiana, Suriname), N.pastinumsp. nov. (Ecuador), N.pertusussp. nov. (Brazil), N.piaroasp. nov. (Venezuela), N.pilatussp. nov. (Venezuela), N.pumesp. nov. (Venezuela), N.punctatostriatussp. nov. (Brazil, French Guiana, Guyana, Peru, Suriname), N.quadrispinussp. nov. (Brazil, Guyana, Suriname), N.spanglerisp. nov. (Peru), N.tambopatensesp. nov. (Peru), N.tenedorsp. nov. (Guyana, Venezuela), N.triangularissp. nov. (Bolivia, Brazil, Paraguay), N.tridentissp. nov. (Brazil), N.trifurcatussp. nov. (Peru), N.unguissp. nov. (Bolivia, Peru), N.xingusp. nov. (Brazil), and N.yanomamisp. nov. (Venezuela), N.yorasp. nov. (Peru). One new synonym is proposed: N.carmona (Short, 2005) syn. nov. was determined to be a junior subjective synonym of N.chaquensis (Fernández, 1982). Novocharesinornatus (d'Orchymont, 1926) is considered incertae sedis. Updated distributions and new records are provided for most previously described species in the genus. Novocharessallaei (Sharp, 1882) is considered native to the USA (Florida) and not an introduced species as previously suggested. Novochares now contains 52 species and spans the entire Neotropical region from Mexico to Argentina, including the Caribbean islands.

RevDate: 2024-02-08

Lamelas-Lopez L, Gabriel R, Ros-Prieto A, et al (2023)

SLAM Project - Long Term Ecological Study of the Impacts of Climate Change in the natural forest of Azores: VI - Inventory of Arthropods of Azorean Urban Gardens.

Biodiversity data journal, 11:e98286 pii:98286.

BACKGROUND: The data we present are part of the long-term project SLAM (Long Term Ecological Study of the Impacts of Climate Change in the natural forest of Azores) aiming to assess the impact of biodiversity erosion drivers on Azorean native biota, using long-term ecological data. Additionally to SLAM (Sea, Land and Air Malaise) traps, nocturnal Active Aerial Searching and nocturnal Foliage Beating methods were used to sample, between 2017 and 2018, the arthropod biodiversity on two historical urban gardens of Azores, the "Jardim Botânico" of Faial Island and "Jardim Duque da Terceira" of Terceira Island.

NEW INFORMATION: We provided an inventory of arthropods collected between 2017 and 2018 in two urban gardens of Faial and Terceira Islands (Azores). A total of 8342 specimens were collected, in which 7493 specimens were identified to species/subspecies level (Faial n = 3296; Terceira n = 4197). The identified specimens belong to four classes, 15 orders, 80 families and 159 species and subspecies of arthropods. A total of 84 species and subspecies are considered introduced (n = 2454 specimens), 50 native non-endemic (n = 4444 specimens), eight endemic (n = 217) and 17 have an indeterminate origin (n = 378). This study also revises the arthropod inventory of these Azorean gardens, by adding/updating the taxonomic names of three orders, ten families and 22 species.

RevDate: 2024-02-08

Aqmal-Naser M, Ali NA, Azmi NU, et al (2023)

Freshwater fishes (Actinopterygii) of Kenyir Reservoir, Peninsular Malaysia: Updated checklist, taxonomic concerns and alien species.

Biodiversity data journal, 11:e100337 pii:100337.

BACKGROUND: A total of 87 freshwater fish species from 30 families were recorded from the Kenyir Reservoir, Peninsular Malaysia, where 75 are native and 12 are introduced species. Few species still have unstable taxonomy identities which urge further studies. Most of the species were categorised as Least Concern (LC) and two were threatened species; Endangered and Critically Endangered (EN and CR). One introduced species, Gambusiaaffinis is widespread in the human-associated area, while other introduced fish species can be considered low in numbers.

NEW INFORMATION: Twenty five fish species are recorded for the first time in the Kenyir Reservoir.

RevDate: 2024-02-08

Di Muri C, Lazic T, Rosati I, et al (2023)

Alien and native species in Italian marine and transitional waters.

Biodiversity data journal, 11:e101464 pii:101464.

BACKGROUND: Biological invasions are one of the major threats to the ecosystem structure and functioning. After the initial introduction, frequently mediated by human activities, alien species can overcome different biogeographical and ecological barriers and determine severe impacts on native biodiversity and socio-economic activities. The Italian peninsula is located at the intersection of large trade routes within the Mediterranean Sea. Such position, along with the intense commercial activity and the high population density of the Italian coast, are considered important drivers of alien species in Italian marine and transitional ecosystems. The Italian peninsula, however, is also one of the regions with the highest native species richness within the Mediterranean Sea and, therefore, it is crucial to account for both alien and native species diversity when estimating the impact of biological invasion. Yet, such comprehensive information is frequently scattered across several biodiversity information systems and databases.

NEW INFORMATION: Here, two datasets with alien and native species records in Italian marine and transitional waters are described. These datasets, created for the LifeWatch Italy case study on alien species, are the result of a large-scale collaboration involving experts working across the whole range of taxonomic diversity. The marine dataset includes a total of 12,219 records belonging to 3,772 species gathered from 91 investigated sites and seven EUNIS habitats. The dataset on transitional waters biodiversity includes 3,838 records belonging to 2,019 species found in 23 locations and four EUNIS habitats. Alien species were recorded in both marine and transitional waters, accounting respectively for 140 and 171 biological records belonging to 59 and 97 species. These occurrence data can be used for further research studies or management purposes, including the evaluation of the invasion risk and the formulation of alien species control and management plans. Furthermore, these compiled datasets can be used as input data for the Biotope vulnerability case study of LifeWatch ERIC, which offers a number of ICT services for the calculation of the incidence and of the impact of alien species on European biotopes.

RevDate: 2024-02-08
CmpDate: 2024-02-08

Lundgren EJ, Bergman J, Trepel J, et al (2024)

Functional traits-not nativeness-shape the effects of large mammalian herbivores on plant communities.

Science (New York, N.Y.), 383(6682):531-537.

Large mammalian herbivores (megafauna) have experienced extinctions and declines since prehistory. Introduced megafauna have partly counteracted these losses yet are thought to have unusually negative effects on plants compared with native megafauna. Using a meta-analysis of 3995 plot-scale plant abundance and diversity responses from 221 studies, we found no evidence that megafauna impacts were shaped by nativeness, "invasiveness," "feralness," coevolutionary history, or functional and phylogenetic novelty. Nor was there evidence that introduced megafauna facilitate introduced plants more than native megafauna. Instead, we found strong evidence that functional traits shaped megafauna impacts, with larger-bodied and bulk-feeding megafauna promoting plant diversity. Our work suggests that trait-based ecology provides better insight into interactions between megafauna and plants than do concepts of nativeness.

RevDate: 2024-02-07

Heneidy SZ, Bidak LM, Halmy MWA, et al (2024)

Naturalization and invasion potential of Sesuvium portulacastrum L. recorded as alien species in Egypt.

Scientific reports, 14(1):3117.

Sesuvium portulacastrum is a perennial halophyte of family Aizoaceae, non-native to Egypt, which was introduced from France ten years ago as an ornamental species. This study reports the detection of S. portulacastrum in the wild in Egypt. Voucher specimens were deposited in the Herbarium of Alexandria University (ALEX). A population of the species was recorded in the wild near Maruit Lake in the north-western coast of Egypt in 2018 during plant resources surveys of the region. The study aimed to assess the potential for S. portulacastrum to spread as an alien species through field observations and geospatial measurements under current conditions in its new habitat. The measured morphological parameters were higher than those recorded in its native habitats. The field observation for three years revealed that the species is proliferating and expanding in the investigated site forming large mats of mean size of up to 9 m[2]. The spatial extent of S. portulacastrum based on the EOO and AOO was quantified, and the expansion rate was estimated at 0.16 ha/year in the investigated site. The geospatial parameter used in the study will not only help in determining the spread rate of the alien species spatially and temporally, but also in its effective management through guiding managers in developing monitoring plans for the species under the changing climate uncertainty. Continuous monitoring and early detection of any potential threats of the introduced species are highly recommended, to avert any potential adverse impacts on native biodiversity and assess its behaviour in the wild habitat.

RevDate: 2024-02-07

Wilsey B, Kaul A, HW Polley (2024)

Establishment from seed is more important for exotic than for native plant species.

Plant-environment interactions (Hoboken, N.J.), 5(1):e10132 pii:PEI310132.

Climate change has initiated movement of both native and non-native (exotic) species across the landscape. Exotic species are hypothesized to establish from seed more readily than comparable native species. We tested the hypothesis that seed limitation is more important for exotic species than native grassland species. We compared seed limitation and invasion resistance over three growing seasons between 18 native and 18 exotic species, grown in both monocultures and mixtures in a field experiment. Half of the plots received a seed mix of the contrasting treatment (i.e., exotic species were seeded into native plots, and native species were seeded into exotic plots), and half served as controls. We found that (1) establishment in this perennial grassland is seed limited, (2) establishment from seed is greater in exotic than native species, and (3) community resistance to seedling establishment was positively related to diversity of extant species, but only in native communities. Native-exotic species diversity and composition differences did not converge over time. Our results imply that native to exotic transformations occur when diversity declines in native vegetation and exotic seeds arrive from adjacent sites, suggesting that managing for high diversity will reduce transformations to exotic dominance.

RevDate: 2024-02-07

Glaser M, Essl F, S Follak (2024)

Austrian farmers perception of new weeds.

Plant-environment interactions (Hoboken, N.J.), 5(1):e10129 pii:PEI310129.

The composition of weed floras in Central European fields has shifted creating a novel management issue: new weeds, that is, species that are currently spreading and increasing in impact. In their role as primary decision makers on the ground, farmers' perception of these new weeds plays a pivotal role in collecting information on their occurrence and control. We conducted an online survey to determine if Austrian farmers recognized 15 selected new weed taxa (12 species and 3 genera) from their farm. The 181 surveyed farmers also estimated the required management effort for these species and elicited their current management practices. Additional questions were posed to understand farmers' general perception of changes in the weed flora. We used a generalized linear mixed model to estimate differences in management effort and identify new weeds that merit monitoring and management programs. Two weed genera (Fallopia spp. and Panicum spp.) showed significantly higher than average management effort. The most commonly used management measures were manual removal, herbicide use and crop rotation. A majority of farmers reported changes in the weed flora; over two thirds reported new species and over one third reported new weeds that were difficult to control. In summary, our results suggest that respondents were aware of the challenges posed by new weeds but required more information on management and prevention strategies.

RevDate: 2024-02-07

Benitez HA, Salinas C, Hernández J, et al (2024)

An outsider on the Antarctic Peninsula: A new record of the non-native moth Plodia interpunctella (Lepidoptera: Pyralidae).

Ecology and evolution, 14(2):e10838 pii:ECE310838.

We report the first record of the microlepidopteran Plodia interpunctella beyond the South Shetland Islands at the Chilean Yelcho scientific station (64°52'33.1428″ S; 63°35'1.9572″ W), Doumer Island, close to the west coast of the Antarctic Peninsula. It is notable that P. interpunctella, a globally distributed stored product pest species, exhibits a remarkable capacity for prolonged viability within food storage facilities. The dual challenges of food transportation and storage in the context of Antarctica's challenging operational conditions may have facilitated P. interpunctella's initial arrival to the Antarctic region. Non-perishable food items, such as grains, flour and rice, provide practical options for the bulk food transportation and storage required in the long-term operation of Antarctic research stations. The presence of P. interpunctella in Antarctica, even if restricted to synanthropic environments within buildings, is a clear threat to Antarctic biodiversity, not only through being an invasive species itself but also as a potential vector for other non-native species (bacteria, acari, between others.), which could carry diseases to the native species.

RevDate: 2024-02-06

Zhai XD, Wang SH, Ma M, et al (2024)

Suppressing the expression of glutathione S-transferase gene GSTd10 increases the sensitivity of Zeugodacus cucurbitae against β-cypermethrin.

Insect molecular biology [Epub ahead of print].

Zeugodacus cucurbitae Coquillett (Diptera: Tephritidae) is an agriculturally and economically important pest worldwide that has developed resistance to β-cypermethrin. Glutathione S-transferases (GSTs) have been reported to be involved in the detoxification of insecticides in insects. We have found that both ZcGSTd6 and ZcGSTd10 were up-regulated by β-cypermethrin induction in our previous study, so we aimed to explore their potential relationship with β-cypermethrin tolerance in this study. The heterologous expression of ZcGSTd6 and ZcGSTd10 in Escherichia coli showed significantly high activities against 1-chloro-2,4-dinitrobenzene (CDNB). The kinetic parameters of ZcGSTd6 and ZcGSTd10 were determined by Lineweaver-Burk. The Vmax and Km of ZcGSTd6 were 0.50 μmol/min·mg and 0.3 mM, respectively. The Vmax and Km of ZcGSTd10 were 1.82 μmol/min·mg and 0.53 mM. The 3D modelling and molecular docking results revealed that β-cypermethrin exhibited a stronger bounding to the active site SER-9 of ZcGSTd10. The sensitivity to β-cypermethrin was significantly increased by 18.73% and 27.21%, respectively, after the knockdown of ZcGSTd6 and ZcGSTd10 by using RNA interference. In addition, the inhibition of CDNB at 50% (IC50) and the inhibition constants (Ki) of β-cypermethrin against ZcGSTd10 were determined as 0.41 and 0.33 mM, respectively. The Ki and IC50 of β-cypermethrin against ZcSGTd6 were not analysed. These results suggested that ZcGSTd10 could be an essential regulator involved in the tolerance of Z. cucurbitae to β-cypermethrin.

RevDate: 2024-02-06

He L, Liu Y, Mao Y, et al (2024)

GRAS transcription factor PINNATE-LIKE PENTAFOLIATA2 controls compound leaf morphogenesis in Medicago truncatula.

The Plant cell pii:7601515 [Epub ahead of print].

The milestone of compound leaf development is the generation of separate leaflet primordia during the early stages, which involves two linked but distinct morphogenetic events: leaflet initiation and boundary establishment for leaflet separation. Although some progress in understanding the regulatory pathways for each event have been made, it is unclear how they are intrinsically coordinated. Here, we identify the PINNATE-LIKE PENTAFOLIATA2 (PINNA2) gene encoding a newly identified GRAS transcription factor in Medicago truncatula. PINNA2 transcripts are preferentially detected at organ boundaries. Its loss-of-function mutations convert trifoliate leaves into a pinnate pentafoliate pattern. PINNA2 directly binds to the promoter region of the LEAFY orthologue SINGLE LEAFLET1 (SGL1), which encodes a key positive regulator of leaflet initiation, and down-regulates its expression. Further analysis revealed that PINNA2 synergizes with two other repressors of SGL1 expression, the BEL1-like homeodomain protein PINNA1 and the C2H2 zinc finger protein PALMATE-LIKE PENTAFOLIATA1 (PALM1), to precisely define the spatiotemporal expression of SGL1 in compound leaf primordia, thereby maintaining a proper pattern of leaflet initiation. Moreover, we showed that the enriched expression of PINNA2 at the leaflet-to-leaflet boundaries is positively regulated by the boundary-specific gene MtNAM, which is essential for leaflet boundary formation. Together, these results unveil a pivotal role of the boundary-expressed transcription factor PINNA2 in regulating leaflet initiation, providing molecular insights into the coordination of intricate developmental processes underlying compound leaf pattern formation.

RevDate: 2024-02-06

Escribano-Álvarez P, Castro MG, Pertierra LR, et al (2024)

Intra and interspecific differences in desiccation tolerance in native and alien Antarctic springtails in geothermal grounds.

Journal of experimental zoology. Part A, Ecological and integrative physiology [Epub ahead of print].

The extreme low humidity and temperatures in Antarctica make it one of the harsher areas for life on our planet. In a global change context, environmental barriers that prevented the arrival of alien species in Antarctica are weakening. Deception Island, one of the four active volcanoes of Antarctica, is especially vulnerable to the impacts of alien species. Geothermal areas (GA) in this Island offer unique microclimatic conditions that could differentially affect native and alien soil arthropods. Here we explore the desiccation tolerance of a native (Cryptopygus antarcticus) and an alien (Proisotoma minuta) springtail (Collembola) species to these extreme environmental conditions. GA and non-geothermal areas (NGA) were selected to evaluate intra- and interspecific variation in desiccation tolerance. Populations of P. minuta from GA had greater desiccation tolerance than populations from NGA. However, desiccation tolerance of C. antarcticus did not differ between GA and NGA. This native species had greater desiccation tolerance than the alien P. minuta, but also greater body size. Our findings show that the alien P. minuta responds differently to environmental conditions than the native C. antarcticus. Furthermore, body size may influence desiccation tolerance in these two springtail species.

RevDate: 2024-02-06

Lugo D, Suárez D, Martín S, et al (2023)

First record of Leptoglossusoccidentalis Heidemann, 1910 (Hemiptera, Coreidae) in the Canary Islands, a novel pine pest detected through citizen science in an oceanic archipelago.

Biodiversity data journal, 11:e109851 pii:109851.

BACKGROUND: The 'western seed bug', known as Leptoglossusoccidentalis, is considered a global invasive species that has experienced a recent rapid expansion worldwide, becoming an important pest species for coniferous forests.

NEW INFORMATION: With the 'Canary Islands early-warning network for the detection and intervention of invasive exotic species' (RedEXOS), this species was detected for the first time in the Canarian archipelago in an urban area in the eastern part of the island of Gran Canaria. This early detection is crucial for understanding the potential damage in one of the islands with the highest surface area of natural endemic pine forest.

RevDate: 2024-02-06

Zanolli P, Scaccini D, A Pozzebon (2023)

New insights into the distribution and spreading of the Asian walnut moth, Garellamusculana (Erschov, 1874) (Lepidoptera, Nolidae) in Europe with a focus on the Italian range.

Biodiversity data journal, 11:e107609 pii:107609.

The Asian walnut moth, Garellamusculana (Erschov, 1874) (Lepidoptera, Nolidae) is an alien pest originating from Central Asia and is now spreading in Europe, attacking walnut trees. In this study, we updated the current distribution of G.musculana, focusing on the Italian range, where it was reported for the first time in 2021. Field surveys showed an extensive distribution of G.musculana in northern Italy, particularly in the Veneto Region. In this area, the Asian walnut moth developed on English and black walnut, attacking almost exclusively tree shoots. Based on current distribution data, further investigations are required in the nearby regions as well as in those that were less surveyed. Lastly, it is imperative to conduct more studies on insect biology and the impact on walnut production.

RevDate: 2024-02-05

Afrane YA, Abdulai A, Mohammed AR, et al (2024)

Detection of Invasive Anopheles stephensi Mosquitoes through Molecular Surveillance, Ghana.

Emerging infectious diseases, 30(3): [Epub ahead of print].

The invasive Anopheles stephensi mosquito has rapidly expanded in range in Africa over the past decade. Consistent with World Health Organization guidelines, routine entomologic surveillance of malaria vectors in Accra, Ghana, now includes morphologic and molecular surveillance of An. stephensi mosquitoes. We report detection of An. stephensi mosquitoes in Ghana.

RevDate: 2024-02-05

Tammone Santos A, Riva E, Condorí WE, et al (2024)

Trichinella Infection in Culled Wild Boar (Sus scrofa) from El Palmar National Park, Argentina, and Exposure Risk in Humans and Dogs Consuming Wild Boar Meat.

Journal of wildlife diseases pii:498831 [Epub ahead of print].

Trichinellosis is a foodborne disease caused by ingestion of raw or undercooked meat containing Trichinella spp. larvae. Consumption of wild boar (Sus scrofa) meat represents an important source of human trichinellosis worldwide. In El Palmar National Park (EPNP), Argentina, invasive alien wild boars are controlled and meat from culled animals is released for public consumption following on-site artificial digestion (AD) testing. Meat trimmings and offal from the control program are often used as food for dogs (Canis familiaris). We evaluated infection and exposure to Trichinella spp. in wild boars from EPNP, as well as exposure to Trichinella spp. and associated risk factors in dogs and human consumers of wild boar meat. Trichinella spp. larvae were detected in muscle samples from 5/49 wild boars by AD (10.2%; 95% confidence interval [CI], 3.8%-23%), with a mean burden of 0.24 larvae per gram (lpg; range, 0.06-0.95 lpg). Anti-Trichinella antibodies were not detected in wild boar serum samples (n=42). In dogs, 12/34 were seropositive to Trichinella spp. (35.29%; 95%, CI, 20.3%-53.5%). Immunoglobulin (Ig) G antibodies were not detected in human serum samples (n=63). Our results reveal the presence, albeit at low prevalence, of Trichinella spp. in wild boars and exposure in dogs fed game offal. These findings suggest that the low prevalence and parasitic load in wild boars, together with the best practices applied by EPNP culling program personnel, contribute to keeping the risk of infection in people low. The dog results highlight that the parasite is circulating in the area, and therefore the risk of infection is not negligible. We recommend the implementation of an animal surveillance strategy in order to monitor the evolution of this zoonosis in the study area.

RevDate: 2024-02-05

Marushchak O, Syrota Y, Dmytrieva I, et al (2024)

Helminths found in common species of the herpetofauna in Ukraine.

Biodiversity data journal, 12:e113770 pii:113770.

BACKGROUND: Only a few comprehensive studies have been carried out on parasites in amphibians and reptiles in Ukraine. This has resulted in identifying over 100 helminth species across these vertebrate groups. However, most of the studies were performed in the 20[th] century and the taxonomy of many parasites and their hosts has changed ever since, in addition to the discovery of new species and registrations of species that had not been previously known for Ukraine. In recent decades, there have been very few publications on helminths from amphibian or reptile hosts in this region. Notably, just one of these recent studies is a faunistic study, providing a list of helminths found in two species of green frogs - Pelophylaxridibundus (Pallas, 1771) and Pelophylaxesculentus (Linnaeus, 1758). Therefore, it is clear that publishing datasets of modern records of helminths in these vertebrate groups, based on modern taxonomy, is an essential step in further studies of their parasitic diversity. Additionally, such study is important in terms of global climate change, the growing number of possibilities of invasion of alien species (both hosts and parasites) that might potentially become a threat to native biota and growing anthropogenic pressure on local populations of hosts that affect the parasites as well. In future, this study is planned to be used for the creation of a checklist of helminths of the herpetofauna of Ukraine. The present dataset is an inventory of various species of helminths parasitising common species of the herpetofauna in central, northern, western and southern Ukraine recorded during field studies in the 2021-2023 period.

NEW INFORMATION: The dataset is the first one to represent the up-to-date and unified data on helminths of reptiles and amphibians of Ukraine. Previously, records of this group of organisms with reference to their hosts were presented as several separate records within the country. Currently, this is the largest dataset presenting geocoded records of non-human-related helminths in the fauna of Ukraine. It reports helminth species from 15 hosts (205 individuals), including eight amphibians and seven reptilian species found in various Ukrainian regions. A total of 47 helminth species have been documented in the research and during 2021-2023 period on the territory of northern (Kyiv and Zhytomyr), western (Lviv, Zakarpattia Ivano-Frankivsk), central (Vinnytsia, Dnipropetrovsk, Cherkasy, Zaporizhzhia and Poltava) and southern (Odesa) regions of Ukraine. The identified helminth species belong to the following phyla: Acanthocephala (Centrorhynchidae (2), Echinorhynchidae (2)); Nematoda (Acuariidae, Anisakidae, Cosmocercidae (3), Dioctophymatidae, Gnathostomatidae (1), Kathlanidae (1), Molineidae (7), Onchocercidae (1), Pharyngodonidae (1), Rhabdiasidae (6), Strongyloididae); Platyhelminthes (Diplodiscidae (1), Diplostomidae (2), Encyclometridae (1), Haematoloechidae (1), Leptophallidae (2), Macroderidae (1), Mesocestoididae, Opisthorchiidae (2), Plagiorchiidae (3), Pleurogenidae (2), Polystomatidae (3), Proteocephalidae (1), Strigeidae (1) and Telorchiidae (3)). Only some helminths in the dataset were not identified to species level. Material is stored in the collection of the department of Parasitology of the I. I. Schmalhausen Institute of Zoology NAS of Ukraine.

RevDate: 2024-02-05
CmpDate: 2024-02-05

Buckley YM, A Torsney (2024)

When function, not origin, matters.

Science (New York, N.Y.), 383(6682):478-479.

Native and introduced megaherbivores similarly affect plant diversity and abundance.


ESP Quick Facts

ESP Origins

In the early 1990's, Robert Robbins was a faculty member at Johns Hopkins, where he directed the informatics core of GDB — the human gene-mapping database of the international human genome project. To share papers with colleagues around the world, he set up a small paper-sharing section on his personal web page. This small project evolved into The Electronic Scholarly Publishing Project.

ESP Support

In 1995, Robbins became the VP/IT of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle, WA. Soon after arriving in Seattle, Robbins secured funding, through the ELSI component of the US Human Genome Project, to create the original ESP.ORG web site, with the formal goal of providing free, world-wide access to the literature of classical genetics.

ESP Rationale

Although the methods of molecular biology can seem almost magical to the uninitiated, the original techniques of classical genetics are readily appreciated by one and all: cross individuals that differ in some inherited trait, collect all of the progeny, score their attributes, and propose mechanisms to explain the patterns of inheritance observed.

ESP Goal

In reading the early works of classical genetics, one is drawn, almost inexorably, into ever more complex models, until molecular explanations begin to seem both necessary and natural. At that point, the tools for understanding genome research are at hand. Assisting readers reach this point was the original goal of The Electronic Scholarly Publishing Project.

ESP Usage

Usage of the site grew rapidly and has remained high. Faculty began to use the site for their assigned readings. Other on-line publishers, ranging from The New York Times to Nature referenced ESP materials in their own publications. Nobel laureates (e.g., Joshua Lederberg) regularly used the site and even wrote to suggest changes and improvements.

ESP Content

When the site began, no journals were making their early content available in digital format. As a result, ESP was obliged to digitize classic literature before it could be made available. For many important papers — such as Mendel's original paper or the first genetic map — ESP had to produce entirely new typeset versions of the works, if they were to be available in a high-quality format.

ESP Help

Early support from the DOE component of the Human Genome Project was critically important for getting the ESP project on a firm foundation. Since that funding ended (nearly 20 years ago), the project has been operated as a purely volunteer effort. Anyone wishing to assist in these efforts should send an email to Robbins.

ESP Plans

With the development of methods for adding typeset side notes to PDF files, the ESP project now plans to add annotated versions of some classical papers to its holdings. We also plan to add new reference and pedagogical material. We have already started providing regularly updated, comprehensive bibliographies to the ESP.ORG site.


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This is a must read book for anyone with an interest in invasion biology. The full title of the book lays out the author's premise — The New Wild: Why Invasive Species Will Be Nature's Salvation. Not only is species movement not bad for ecosystems, it is the way that ecosystems respond to perturbation — it is the way ecosystems heal. Even if you are one of those who is absolutely convinced that invasive species are actually "a blight, pollution, an epidemic, or a cancer on nature", you should read this book to clarify your own thinking. True scientific understanding never comes from just interacting with those with whom you already agree. R. Robbins

Electronic Scholarly Publishing
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Papers in Classical Genetics

The ESP began as an effort to share a handful of key papers from the early days of classical genetics. Now the collection has grown to include hundreds of papers, in full-text format.

Digital Books

Along with papers on classical genetics, ESP offers a collection of full-text digital books, including many works by Darwin and even a collection of poetry — Chicago Poems by Carl Sandburg.


ESP now offers a large collection of user-selected side-by-side timelines (e.g., all science vs. all other categories, or arts and culture vs. world history), designed to provide a comparative context for appreciating world events.


Biographical information about many key scientists (e.g., Walter Sutton).

Selected Bibliographies

Bibliographies on several topics of potential interest to the ESP community are automatically maintained and generated on the ESP site.

ESP Picks from Around the Web (updated 07 JUL 2018 )