• Early 1900s Detection of Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis in Korean Amphibians

      Fong, Jonathan J.; Cheng, Tina L.; Bataille, Arnaud; Pessier, Allan P.; Waldman, Bruce; Vredenburg, Vance T. (2015)
      The pathogenic fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd) is a major conservation concern because of its role in decimating amphibian populations worldwide. We used quantitative PCR to screen 244 museum specimens from the Korean Peninsula, collected between 1911 and 2004, for the presence of Bd to gain insight into its history in Asia. Three specimens of Rugosa emeljanovi (previously Rana or Glandirana rugosa), collected in 1911 from Wonsan, North Korea, tested positive for Bd. Histology of these positive specimens revealed mild hyperkeratosis – a non-specific host response commonly found in Bd-infected frogs – but no Bd zoospores or zoosporangia. Our results indicate that Bd was present in Korea more than 100 years ago, consistent with hypotheses suggesting that Korean amphibians may be infected by endemic Asian Bd strains.
    • Early-life exposures and Johne’s disease risk in zoo ruminants

      Burgess, Tristan L.; Witte, Carmel L.; Rideout, Bruce (2017)
      Johne’s disease, caused by Mycobacterium avium subsp. paratuberculosis (MAP), is a chronic, progressive bacterial enteritis of ruminants that can cause serious losses in both livestock and exotic species. Infection risk in exotic ruminants is associated with maternal infection status, but the effect of other herdmates on risk of infection has not been reported, to our knowledge....
    • Ecological context influences scent-marking behavior in the giant panda

      Zhou, W.; Nie, Y.; Swaisgood, Ronald R.; Li, Y.; Liu, D.; Wei, F. (2019)
      Signal detection theory predicts that animals should select scent-marking sites in a way that maximizes their probability of detection by target receivers. Many studies have been conducted with a focus on signaling behavior and function....
    • Ecological scale and seasonal heterogeneity in the spatial behaviors of giant pandas

      Zhang, Zejun; Sheppard, James; Swaisgood, Ronald R.; Wang, Guan; Nie, Yonggang; Wei, Wei; Zhao, Naxun; Wei, Fuwen (2014)
      We report on the first study to track the spatial behaviors of wild giant pandas (Ailuropoda melanoleuca ) using high‐resolution global positioning system (GPS) telemetry.... Despite a high degree of spatial overlap between panda home ranges, particularly in winter, we detected neither avoidance nor attraction behavior between conspecifics.
    • Ecological specialization and morphological diversification in Greater Antillean boas

      Reynolds, R. Graham; Collar David C.; Pasachnik, Stesha A.; Niemiller Matthew L.; Puente-Rolón, Alberto R.; Revell, Liam J. (2016)
      Colonization of islands can dramatically influence the evolutionary trajectories of organisms, with both deterministic and stochastic processes driving adaptation and diversification. Some island colonists evolve extremely large or small body sizes, presumably in response to unique ecological circumstances present on islands. One example of this phenomenon, the Greater Antillean boas, includes both small (<90 cm) and large (4 m) species occurring on the Greater Antilles and Bahamas, with some islands supporting pairs or trios of body‐size divergent species. These boas have been shown to comprise a monophyletic radiation arising from a Miocene dispersal event to the Greater Antilles, though it is not known whether co‐occurrence of small and large species is a result of dispersal or in situ evolution. Here, we provide the first comprehensive species phylogeny for this clade combined with morphometric and ecological data to show that small body size evolved repeatedly on separate islands in association with specialization in substrate use. Our results further suggest that microhabitat specialization is linked to increased rates of head shape diversification among specialists. Our findings show that ecological specialization following island colonization promotes morphological diversity through deterministic body size evolution and cranial morphological diversification that is contingent on island‐ and species‐specific factors.
    • Ecology and behavior of uacaris (genus Cacajao)

      Barnett, Adrian A.; Bowler, Mark; Bezerra, Bruna M.; Defler, Thomas R.; Veiga, Liza M.; Barnett, Adrian A.; Ferrari, Stephen F.; Norconk, Marilyn A. (Cambridge University PressCambridge, 2013)
    • Ecology, livelihoods, and management of the Mauritia flexuosa palm in South America

      Virapongse, Arika; Endress, Bryan A.; Gilmore, Michael P.; Horn, Christa M.; Romulo, Chelsie (2017)
      Mauritia flexuosa is a key ecological and economic palm found throughout tropical South America. To inform improved management of M. flexuosa, we conducted a systematic review of published information about the ecology, livelihoods, and management of M. flexuosa, synthesized the information and identified knowledge gaps, and analyzed the spatial distribution of publications. A total of 143 documents (primary research, literature reviews, and grey literature) were reviewed. Most published information originates from Peru and Brazil, with a disproportionate number of documents based in the Loreto Department of Peru. Significant geographical gaps in published information exist, especially in the northern portion of the species range. Existing literature emphasizes M. flexuosa fruit, although leaves, oil, and other products play important roles economically. To improve M. flexuosa management, we recommend that future research focuses on: (1) M. flexuosa availability; (2) harvest and cultivation; (3) development of consistent methods and standards; (4) landscape-level issues like land use change; (5) M. flexuosa within broader systems; (6) spatial gaps in research; (7) long-term research; and (8) multi- and interdisciplinary approaches.
    • Efectos del manejo tradicional sobre la palma Brahea aculeata en una selva seca del sur de Sonora, México

      López-Toledo, Leonel; Espinosa-Hidalgo, Carlos; Horn, Christa M.; Endress, Bryan A. (2015)
      En este estudio se evaluaron los efectos del manejo tradicional de Brahea aculeata (Arecaceae), sobre algunos atributos funcionales (hojas totales, producción y tamaño de hojas) y demográficos (mortalidad, crecimiento y reproducción). Las hojas de la especie son utilizadas para techos de casas y artesanías; y debido al pastoreo libre de ganado vacuno en el bosque, la especie puede sufrir herbivoría. Para evaluar los efectos del pastoreo y la cosecha de hojas se estableció un experimento en la Reserva “Sierra de Álamos”, Sonora, México, en el que se simularon las diferentes prácticas del manejo tradicional. Se establecieron seis tratamientos que combinan el pastoreo (con/sin) e intensidades de cosecha (sin cosecha/baja/intensiva). En general, en palmas pequeñas (≤ 200 cm de largo de tallo), se encontraron efectos interactivos del pastoreo y la cosecha de hojas, mientras que en palmas grandes (> 200 cm) únicamente para la cosecha. En palmas pequeñas se encontraron efectos negativos en el número y tamaño de hojas; mientras que la producción de hojas, la mortalidad y el crecimiento, el efecto fue positivo. Para palmas grandes, el efecto fue positivo en todos los casos; excepto en la mortalidad, en los que no se encontraron efectos. Los efectos positivos se podrían explicar como una respuesta sobrecompensatoria en la que la pérdida de área foliar se puede suplir mediante la alteración de procesos relacionados con la fotosíntesis y/o la asignación de recursos. Este estudio contribuye con información útil para el establecimiento de un programa de manejo, basado en el aprovechamiento tradicional de la especie en el área.
    • Effect of preservation method on spider monkey (Ateles geoffroyi) fecal microbiota over 8 weeks

      Hale, Vanessa L.; Tan, Chia L.; Knight, Rob; Amato, Katherine R. (2015)
      …Gut microbes play an important role in human and animal health, and gut microbiome analysis holds great potential for evaluating health in wildlife, as microbiota can be assessed from non-invasively collected fecal samples. However, many common fecal preservation protocols (e.g. freezing at ?80°C) are not suitable for field conditions, or have not been tested for long-term (greater than 2weeks) storage. In this study, we collected fresh fecal samples from captive spider monkeys (Ateles geoffroyi) at the Columbian Park Zoo (Lafayette, IN, USA)….
    • Effect of widespread agricultural chemical use on butterfly diversity across Turkish provinces

      Pekin, Burak K. (2013)
      …I assessed the effects of a major component of agricultural intensification, agricultural chemical use, and land-cover and climatic variables on butterfly diversity across 81 provinces in Turkey, where agriculture is practiced extensively but with varying degrees of intensity…. Although overall butterfly richness was primarily explained by climatic and land-cover variables, such as the area of natural vegetation cover, threatened butterfly richness and the relative number of threatened butterfly species decreased substantially as the proportion of agricultural households using pesticides increased. These findings suggest that widespread use of agricultural chemicals, or other components of agricultural intensification that may be collinear with pesticide use, pose an imminent threat to the biodiversity of Turkey.…
    • Effectiveness of animal conditioning interventions in reducing human–wildlife conflict: a systematic map protocol

      Snijders, Lysanne; Greggor, Alison L.; Hilderink, Femke; Doran, Carolina (2019)
      Human–wildlife conflict (HWC), is currently one of the most pressing conservation challenges. We restrict ourselves here to wildlife behaviour that is perceived to negatively impact social, economic or cultural aspects of human life or to negatively impact species of conservation concern. HWC often involves wild animals consuming anthropogenic resources, such as crops or livestock, either out of necessity (loss of habitat and natural prey) or as consequence of opportunistic behaviour. A variety of interventions are undertaken to reduce HWC, differing in practicability, costs and social acceptance. One such non-lethal intervention is animal conditioning, a technique to reduce conflict by modifying the behaviour of ‘problem’ animals long-term. Conditioning changes associations animals have with resources or behaviours. Both via ‘punishment’ of unwanted behaviour and ‘rewarding’ of alternative behaviour, researchers aim to make expression of unwanted behaviour relatively less desirable to animals. Despite the potential, however, studies testing conditioning interventions have reported seemingly contradictory outcomes. To facilitate reduction of HWC via conditioning, we thus need to better understand if and when conditioning interventions are indeed effective. With this systematic map we intend to make the global evidence base for conditioning of free-ranging vertebrates more accessible to practitioners, to identify potential evidence clusters and effect modifiers for a subsequent systematic review and to highlight evidence gaps for future research.
    • Effects of artificial light at night on the foraging behavior of an endangered nocturnal mammal

      Shier, Debra M.; Bird, Alicia K.; Wang, Thea B. (2020)
      ...The endangered Stephens’ kangaroo rat (SKR), Dipodomys stephensi, is a nocturnal rodent threatened by habitat destruction from urban expansion. The degree to which ALAN impacts their recovery is unknown....
    • Effects of body size on estimation of mammalian area requirements

      Noonan, Michael J.; Fleming, Christen H.; Tucker, Marlee A.; Kays, Roland; Harrison, Autumn-Lynn; Crofoot, Margaret C.; Abrahms, Briana; Alberts, Susan C.; Ali, Abdullahi H.; Altmann, Jeanne; et al. (2020)
      Accurately quantifying species’ area requirements is a prerequisite for effective area‐based conservation. This typically involves collecting tracking data on species of interest and then conducting home‐range analyses. Problematically, autocorrelation in tracking data can result in space needs being severely underestimated. Based on the previous work, we hypothesized the magnitude of underestimation varies with body mass, a relationship that could have serious conservation implications. To evaluate this hypothesis for terrestrial mammals, we estimated home‐range areas with global positioning system (GPS) locations from 757 individuals across 61 globally distributed mammalian species with body masses ranging from 0.4 to 4000 kg. We then applied block cross‐validation to quantify bias in empirical home‐range estimates. Area requirements of mammals <10 kg were underestimated by a mean approximately15%, and species weighing approximately100 kg were underestimated by approximately50% on average. Thus, we found area estimation was subject to autocorrelation‐induced bias that was worse for large species. Combined with the fact that extinction risk increases as body mass increases, the allometric scaling of bias we observed suggests the most threatened species are also likely to be those with the least accurate home‐range estimates. As a correction, we tested whether data thinning or autocorrelation‐informed home‐range estimation minimized the scaling effect of autocorrelation on area estimates. Data thinning required an approximately93% data loss to achieve statistical independence with 95% confidence and was, therefore, not a viable solution. In contrast, autocorrelation‐informed home‐range estimation resulted in consistently accurate estimates irrespective of mass. When relating body mass to home range size, we detected that correcting for autocorrelation resulted in a scaling exponent significantly >1, meaning the scaling of the relationship changed substantially at the upper end of the mass spectrum.
    • Effects of field conditions on fecal microbiota

      Hale, Vanessa L.; Tan, Chia L.; Niu, Kefeng; Yang, Yeqin; Cui, Duoying; Zhao, Hongxia; Knight, Rob; Amato, Katherine R. (2016)
      Gut microbiota can provide great insight into host health, and studies of the gut microbiota in wildlife are becoming more common. However, the effects of field conditions on gut microbial samples are unknown. This study addresses the following questions: 1) How do environmental factors such as sunlight and insect infestations affect fecal microbial DNA? 2) How does fecal microbial DNA change over time after defecation? 3) How does storage method affect microbial DNA? Fresh fecal samples were collected, pooled, and homogenized from a family group of 6 spider monkeys, Ateles geoffroyi....
    • Effects of inbreeding and parental incubation on captive breeding success in Hawaiian crows

      Hoeck, Paquita E. A.; Wolak, Matthew E.; Switzer, Richard A.; Kuehler, Cyndi M.; Lieberman, Alan A. (2015)
      We used 17 years of captive breeding records of the Hawaiian crow (Corvus hawaiiensis) to study the effects of individual and parental level of inbreeding on survival through early life…. Our study contributes to evidence that the strength of inbreeding depression is particularly severe in early life traits. It shows that the negative effects of inbreeding on reproductive success should be accounted for even in benign captive environments where survival is maximized and suggests that parental incubation should be favored over artificial incubation in avian captive breeding programs.
    • Effects of life history and reproduction on recruitment time lags in reintroductions of rare plants

      Albrecht, Matthew A.; Osazuwa-Peters, Oyomoare L.; Maschinski, Joyce; Bell, Timothy J.; Bowles, Marlin L.; Brumback, William E.; Duquesnel, Janice; Kunz, Michael; Lange, Jimmy; McCue, Kimberlie A.; et al. (2019)
      Reintroductions are important components of conservation and recovery programs for rare plant species, but their long-term success rates are poorly understood....
    • Effects of selective logging on large mammal populations in a remote indigenous territory in the northern Peruvian Amazon

      Mayor, Pedro; Pérez-Peña, Pedro; Bowler, Mark; Puertas, Pablo; Kirkland, Maire; Bodmer, Richard (2015)
      We examined the effects of selective timber logging carried out by local indigenous people in remote areas within indigenous territories on the mammal populations of the Yavari-Mirin River basin on the Peru-Brazil border. Recent findings show that habitat change in the study area is minimal, and any effect of logging activities on large mammal populations is highly likely to be the result of hunting associated with logging operations. We used hunting registers to estimate the monthly and yearly biomass extracted during timber operations and to calculate the catch per unit effort (CPUE) in subsistence hunting in the community of Esperanza 2 to 5 years before logging activities started and 4 to 7 years after logging began. We also used line transects and the distance method to estimate animal densities before and after logging. We found that 1389 hunted animals and 27,459 kg of mammal biomass were extracted per year from logging concessions. CPUE for ungulates declined; however, it increased for other mammal orders, such as rodents and primates, indicating a shift to alternative prey items. Although collared peccaries (Pecari tajacu) and tapirs (Tapirus terrestris) may also have declined in numbers, this shift may have been caused by a possibly natural population crash in white-lipped peccaries (Tayassu pecari) that coincided with the logging periods. We found no evidence that populations of primates were reduced by the logging activities. Because primates are sensitive to hunting, and their populations were of principal concern as logging commenced, this indicates that these forests remain of high conservation value. The unusual socioeconomic situation of these remote territories may mean that they are compatible with wildlife conservation in the Yavari-Mirin basin.
    • Effects of territory size on the reproductive success and social system of the giant otter, south-eastern Peru: Territory size and reproductive success in giant otters

      Groenendijk, Jessica; Hajek, Frank; Schenck, C.; Staib, E.; Johnson, P. J.; Macdonald, D. W. (2015)
      The link between resource abundance, dispersion and cooperative breeding in mammals has been a topic of much debate among ecologists. The giant otter social system is facultatively cooperative…. We conclude that giant otter societies are likely shaped by the spatial dispersion of lakes, and food abundance and dispersion within these rich patches.
    • Efficacy of treatment and long-term follow-up of Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis PCR-positive anurans following itraconazole bath treatment

      Georoff, Timothy A.; Moore, Robert P.; Rodriguez, Carlos; Pessier, Allan P.; Newton, Alisa L.; McAloose, Denise; Calle, Paul P. (2013)
      All anuran specimens in the Wildlife Conservation Society's collections testing positive for Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd) were treated with itraconazole and then studied after treatment to assess the long-term effects of itraconazole and the drug's effectiveness in eliminating Bd carriers. Twenty-four individuals and eight colonies of 11 different species (75 total specimens) tested positive for Bd via polymerase chain reaction (PCR) on multicollection survey. All positive individuals and colonies were treated with a 0.01% itraconazole bath solution and retested for Bd via one of two PCR methodologies within 14 days of treatment completion, and all were negative for Bd. A total of 64 animals received secondary follow-up PCR testing at the time of death, 6–8 mo, or 12–15 mo post-treatment. Fourteen animals (14/64, 21.9%) were PCR positive for Bd on second follow-up. The highest percentage positive at second recheck were green-and-black poison dart frogs (Dendrobates auratus; 5/5 specimens, 100%), followed by red-eyed tree frogs (Agalychnis callidryas; 4/11, 36.4%), grey tree frogs (Hyla versicolor; 1/3, 33.3%), and green tree frogs (Hyla cinera; 3/11, 27.3%). Re-testing by PCR performed on 26/28 individuals that died during the study indicated 11/26 (42.3%) were positive (all via DNA extracted from formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded skin sections). However, there was no histologic evidence of chytridiomycosis in any of 27/28 individuals. The small number of deceased animals and effects of postmortem autolysis limited the ability to determine statistical trends in the pathology data, but none of the necropsied specimens showed evidence of itraconazole toxicity. Problems with itraconazole may be species dependent, and this report expands the list of species that can tolerate treatment. Although itraconazole is effective for clearance of most individuals infected with Bd, results of the study suggest that repeat itraconazole treatment and follow-up diagnostics may be required to ensure that subclinical infections are eliminated in amphibian collections.
    • Efficient 3D movement-based kernel density estimator and application to wildlife ecology

      Tracey, J.A.; Sheppard, James; Lockwood, G.K.; Chourasia, A.; Tatineni, M.; Fisher, R.N.; Sinkovits, R.S. (Association for Computing MachineryAtlanta (GA), 2014)