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Eastern coyote

John F Benson, Karen M Loveless, Linda Y Rutledge, Brent R Patterson
Understanding the ecological roles of species that influence ecosystem processes is a central goal of ecology and conservation biology. Eastern coyotes (Canis latrans) have ascended to the role of apex predator across much of eastern North America since the extirpation of wolves (Canis spp.) and there has been considerable confusion regarding their ability to prey on ungulates and their ecological niche relative to wolves. Eastern wolves (C. lycaon) are thought to have been the historical top predator in eastern deciduous forests and have previously been characterized as deer specialists that are inefficient predators of moose because of their smaller size relative to gray wolves (C...
January 8, 2017: Ecological Applications: a Publication of the Ecological Society of America
Joseph W Hinton, Christine Proctor, Marcella J Kelly, Frank T van Manen, Michael R Vaughan, Michael J Chamberlain
Recovery of large carnivores remains a challenge because complex spatial dynamics that facilitate population persistence are poorly understood. In particular, recovery of the critically endangered red wolf (Canis rufus) has been challenging because of its vulnerability to extinction via human-caused mortality and hybridization with coyotes (Canis latrans). Therefore, understanding red wolf space use and habitat selection is important to assist recovery because key aspects of wolf ecology such as interspecific competition, foraging, and habitat selection are well-known to influence population dynamics and persistence...
2016: PloS One
Justin H Bohling, Justin Dellinger, Justin M McVey, David T Cobb, Christopher E Moorman, Lisette P Waits
When hybridizing species come into contact, understanding the processes that regulate their interactions can help predict the future outcome of the system. This is especially relevant in conservation situations where human activities can influence hybridization dynamics. We investigated a developing hybrid zone between red wolves and coyotes in North Carolina, USA to elucidate patterns of hybridization in a system heavily managed for preservation of the red wolf genome. Using noninvasive genetic sampling of scat, we surveyed a 2880 km(2) region adjacent to the Red Wolf Experimental Population Area (RWEPA)...
July 2016: Evolutionary Applications
Bridgett M vonHoldt, Roland Kays, John P Pollinger, Robert K Wayne
Hybrid zones typically contain novel gene combinations that can be tested by natural selection in a unique genetic context. Parental haplotypes that increase fitness can introgress beyond the hybrid zone, into the range of parental species. We used the Affymetrix canine SNP genotyping array to identify genomic regions tagged by multiple ancestry informative markers that are more frequent in an admixed population than expected. We surveyed a hybrid zone formed in the last 100 years as coyotes expanded their range into eastern North America...
June 2016: Molecular Ecology
Christopher T Rota, Christopher K Wikle, Roland W Kays, Tavis D Forrester, William J McShea, Arielle W Parsons, Joshua J Millspaugh
Occupancy models are popular for estimating the probability a site is occupied by a species of interest when detection is imperfect. Occupancy models have been extended to account for interacting species and spatial dependence but cannot presently allow both factors to act simultaneously. We propose a two-species occupancy model that accommodates both interspecific and spatial dependence. We use a point-referenced multivariate hierarchical spatial model to account for both spatial and interspecific dependence...
January 2016: Ecology
L Y Rutledge, S Devillard, J Q Boone, P A Hohenlohe, B N White
Top predators are disappearing worldwide, significantly changing ecosystems that depend on top-down regulation. Conflict with humans remains the primary roadblock for large carnivore conservation, but for the eastern wolf (Canis lycaon), disagreement over its evolutionary origins presents a significant barrier to conservation in Canada and has impeded protection for grey wolves (Canis lupus) in the USA. Here, we use 127,235 single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) identified from restriction-site associated DNA sequencing (RAD-seq) of wolves and coyotes, in combination with genomic simulations, to test hypotheses of hybrid origins of Canis types in eastern North America...
July 2015: Biology Letters
M Colter Chitwood, Morgan B Swingen, Marcus A Lashley, James R Flowers, Maria B Palamar, Charles S Apperson, Colleen Olfenbuttel, Christopher E Moorman, Christopher S DePerno
Coyotes (Canis latrans) have expanded recently into the eastern US and can serve as a source of pathogens to domestic dogs (Canis lupus familiaris), livestock, and humans. We examined free-ranging coyotes from central North Carolina, US, for selected parasites and prevalence of antibodies against viral and bacterial agents. We detected ticks on most (81%) coyotes, with Amblyomma americanum detected on 83% of those with ticks. Fifteen (47%) coyotes were positive for heartworms (Dirofilaria immitis), with a greater detection rate in adults (75%) than juveniles (22%)...
July 2015: Journal of Wildlife Diseases
M Colter Chitwood, Marcus A Lashley, John C Kilgo, Kenneth H Pollock, Christopher E Moorman, Christopher S DePerno
Coyotes recently expanded into the eastern U.S. and potentially have caused localized white-tailed deer population declines. Research has focused on quantifying coyote predation on neonates, but little research has addressed the potential influence of bedsite characteristics on survival. In 2011 and 2012, we radiocollared 65 neonates, monitored them intensively for 16 weeks, and assigned mortality causes. We used Program MARK to estimate survival to 16 weeks and included biological covariates (i.e., sex, sibling status [whether or not it had a sibling], birth weight, and Julian date of birth)...
2015: PloS One
Stuart Wine, Sara A Gagné, Ross K Meentemeyer
The coyote (Canis latrans) has dramatically expanded its range to include the cities and suburbs of the western US and those of the Eastern Seaboard. Highly adaptable, this newcomer's success causes conflicts with residents, necessitating research to understand the distribution of coyotes in urban landscapes. Citizen science can be a powerful approach toward this aim. However, to date, the few studies that have used publicly reported coyote sighting data have lacked an in-depth consideration of human socioeconomic variables, which we suggest are an important source of overlooked variation in data that describe the simultaneous occurrence of coyotes and humans...
January 2015: Environmental Management
Javier Monzón
Previous genetic studies of eastern coyotes ( Canis latrans) are based on one of two strategies: sampling many individuals using one or very few molecular markers, or sampling very few individuals using many genomic markers. Thus, a regional analysis of genetic diversity and population structure in eastern coyotes using many samples and several molecular markers is lacking. I evaluated genetic diversity and population structure in 385 northeastern coyotes using 16 common single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs)...
2014: F1000Research
John F Benson, Brent R Patterson, Peter J Mahoney
It is widely recognized that protected areas can strongly influence ecological systems and that hybridization is an important conservation issue. However, previous studies have not explicitly considered the influence of protected areas on hybridization dynamics. Eastern wolves are a species of special concern and their distribution is largely restricted to a protected population in Algonquin Provincial Park (APP), Ontario, Canada, where they are the numerically dominant canid. We studied intrinsic and extrinsic factors influencing survival and cause-specific mortality of hybrid and parental canids in the three-species hybrid zone between eastern wolves, eastern coyotes, and gray wolves in and adjacent to APP...
February 2014: Ecology
L David Mech, Bruce W Christensen, Cheryl S Asa, Margaret Callahan, Julie K Young
Using artificial insemination we attempted to produce hybrids between captive, male, western, gray wolves (Canis lupus) and female, western coyotes (Canis latrans) to determine whether their gametes would be compatible and the coyotes could produce and nurture offspring. The results contribute new information to an ongoing controversy over whether the eastern wolf (Canis lycaon) is a valid unique species that could be subject to the U. S. Endangered Species Act. Attempts with transcervically deposited wolf semen into nine coyotes over two breeding seasons yielded three coyote pregnancies...
2014: PloS One
R K Swihart, J J Pignatello, M J Mattina
We tested whether predator odors could reduce winter browsing of woody plants by white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus). Urine from bobcats (Lyra rufus) and coyotes (Canis latrans) significantly reduced browsing of Japanese yews (Taxus cuspidata), and repellency was enhanced when urine was reapplied weekly as a topical spray. Urine of cottontail rabbits (Sylvilagus floridanus) and humans did not reduce damage, suggesting that deer do not respond aversively to odors of nonpredatory mammals or occasional predators with which they lack a long evolutionary association...
April 1991: Journal of Chemical Ecology
J Monzón, R Kays, D E Dykhuizen
The evolutionary importance of hybridization as a source of new adaptive genetic variation is rapidly gaining recognition. Hybridization between coyotes and wolves may have introduced adaptive alleles into the coyote gene pool that facilitated an expansion in their geographic range and dietary niche. Furthermore, hybridization between coyotes and domestic dogs may facilitate adaptation to human-dominated environments. We genotyped 63 ancestry-informative single-nucleotide polymorphisms in 427 canids to examine the prevalence, spatial distribution and the ecology of admixture in eastern coyotes...
January 2014: Molecular Ecology
Tyler J Wheeldon, Linda Y Rutledge, Brent R Patterson, Bradley N White, Paul J Wilson
Hybridization has played an important role in the evolutionary history of Canis species in eastern North America. Genetic evidence of coyote-dog hybridization based on mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) is lacking compared to that based on autosomal markers. This discordance suggests dog introgression into coyotes has potentially been male biased, but this hypothesis has not been formally tested. Therefore, we investigated biparentally, maternally, and paternally inherited genetic markers in a sample of coyotes and dogs from southeastern Ontario to assess potential asymmetric dog introgression into coyotes...
September 2013: Ecology and Evolution
John F Benson, Brent R Patterson
Gray wolves (Canis lupus) and coyotes (Canis latrans) generally exhibit intraspecific territoriality manifesting in spatial segregation between adjacent packs. However, previous studies have found a high degree of interspecific spatial overlap between sympatric wolves and coyotes. Eastern wolves (Canis lycaon) are the most common wolf in and around Algonquin Provincial Park (APP), Ontario, Canada and hybridize with sympatric gray wolves and coyotes. We hypothesized that all Canis types (wolves, coyotes, and hybrids) exhibit a high degree of spatial segregation due to greater genetic, morphologic, and ecological similarities between wolves and coyotes in this hybrid system compared with western North American ecosystems...
December 2013: Oecologia
John F Benson, Brent R Patterson, Tyler J Wheeldon
Eastern wolves have hybridized extensively with coyotes and gray wolves and are listed as a 'species of special concern' in Canada. However, a distinct population of eastern wolves has been identified in Algonquin Provincial Park (APP) in Ontario. Previous studies of the diverse Canis hybrid zone adjacent to APP have not linked genetic analysis with field data to investigate genotype-specific morphology or determine how resident animals of different ancestry are distributed across the landscape in relation to heterogeneous environmental conditions...
December 2012: Molecular Ecology
Paul J Wilson, Linda Y Rutledge, Tyler J Wheeldon, Brent R Patterson, Bradley N White
There has been considerable discussion on the origin of the red wolf and eastern wolf and their evolution independent of the gray wolf. We analyzed mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) and a Y-chromosome intron sequence in combination with Y-chromosome microsatellites from wolves and coyotes within the range of extensive wolf-coyote hybridization, that is, eastern North America. The detection of divergent Y-chromosome haplotypes in the historic range of the eastern wolf is concordant with earlier mtDNA findings, and the absence of these haplotypes in western coyotes supports the existence of the North American evolved eastern wolf (Canis lycaon)...
September 2012: Ecology and Evolution
Astrid V Stronen, Nathalie Tessier, Hélène Jolicoeur, Paul C Paquet, Michel Hénault, Mario Villemure, Brent R Patterson, Tim Sallows, Gloria Goulet, François-Joseph Lapointe
Contemporary evolution through human-induced hybridization occurs throughout the taxonomic range. Formerly allopatric species appear especially susceptible to hybridization. Consequently, hybridization is expected to be more common in regions with recent sympatry owing to human activity than in areas of historical range overlap. Coyotes (Canis latrans) and gray wolves (C. lupus) are historically sympatric in western North America. Following European settlement gray wolf range contracted, whereas coyote range expanded to include eastern North America...
September 2012: Ecology and Evolution
Peter L Erb, William J McShea, Robert P Guralnick
Anthropogenic effects on wildlife are typically assessed at the local level, but it is often difficult to extrapolate to larger spatial extents. Macro-level occupancy studies are one way to assess impacts of multiple disturbance factors that might vary over different geographic extents. Here we assess anthropogenic effects on occupancy and distribution for several mammal species within the Appalachian Trail (AT), a forest corridor that extends across a broad section of the eastern United States. Utilizing camera traps and a large volunteer network of citizen scientists, we were able to sample 447 sites along a 1024 km section of the AT to assess the effects of available habitat, hunting, recreation, and roads on eight mammal species...
2012: PloS One
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