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Christina K Clarke, Peter J Gregory, Martin Lukac, Amanda J Burridge, Alexandra M Allen, Keith J Edwards, Mike J Gooding
Background and Aims: The genetic basis of increased rooting below the plough layer, post-anthesis in the field, of an elite wheat line (Triticum aestivum 'Shamrock') with recent introgression from wild emmer (T. dicoccoides), is investigated. Shamrock has a non-glaucous canopy phenotype mapped to the short arm of chromosome 2B (2BS), derived from the wild emmer. A secondary aim was to determine whether genetic effects found in the field could have been predicted by other assessment methods...
September 1, 2017: Annals of Botany
Sam Moore, Stephen Adu-Bredu, Akwasi Duah-Gyamfi, Shalom D Addo-Danso, Forzia Ibrahim, Armel T Mbou, Agnès de Grandcourt, Riccardo Valentini, Giacomo Nicolini, Gloria Djagbletey, Kennedy Owusu-Afriyie, Agne Gvozdevaite, Imma Oliveras, Maria C Ruiz-Jaen, Yadvinder Malhi
Net primary productivity (NPP) is one of the most important parameters in describing the functioning of any ecosystem and yet it arguably remains a poorly quantified and understood component of carbon cycling in tropical forests, especially outside of the Americas. We provide the first comprehensive analysis of NPP and its carbon allocation to woody, canopy and root growth components at contrasting lowland West African forests spanning a rainfall gradient. Using a standardised methodology to study evergreen (EF), semi-deciduous (SDF), dry forests (DF) and woody savanna (WS), we find that (i) climate is more closely related with above and belowground C stocks than with NPP (ii) total NPP is highest in the SDF site, then the EF followed by the DF and WS and that (iii) different forest types have distinct carbon allocation patterns whereby SDF allocate in excess of 50% to canopy production and the DF and WS sites allocate 40-50% to woody production...
September 14, 2017: Global Change Biology
Lara A Roman, Jason P Fristensky, Theodore S Eisenman, Eric J Greenfield, Robert E Lundgren, Chloe E Cerwinka, David A Hewitt, Caitlin C Welsh
Many municipalities are setting ambitious tree canopy cover goals to increase the extent of their urban forests. A historical perspective on urban forest development can help cities strategize how to establish and achieve appropriate tree cover targets. To understand how long-term urban forest change occurs, we examined the history of trees on an urban college campus: the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, PA. Using a mixed methods approach, including qualitative assessments of archival records (1870-2017), complemented by quantitative analysis of tree cover from aerial imagery (1970-2012), our analysis revealed drastic canopy cover increase in the late 20th and early 21st centuries along with the principle mechanisms of that change...
September 13, 2017: Environmental Management
Bettina Ohse, Carolin Seele, Frédéric Holzwarth, Christian Wirth
Browsing of tree saplings by deer hampers forest regeneration in mixed forests across Europe and North America. It is well known that tree species are differentially affected by deer browsing, but little is known about how different facets of diversity, such as species richness, identity, and composition, affect browsing intensity at different spatial scales. Using forest inventory data from the Hainich National Park, a mixed deciduous forest in central Germany, we applied a hierarchical approach to model the browsing probability of patches (regional scale) as well as the species-specific proportion of saplings browsed within patches (patch scale)...
September 2017: Ecology and Evolution
Marc Bouvier, Sylvie Durrieu, Frédéric Gosselin, Basile Herpigny
We explored the potential of airborne laser scanner (ALS) data to improve Bayesian models linking biodiversity indicators of the understory vegetation to environmental factors. Biodiversity was studied at plot level and models were built to investigate species abundance for the most abundant plants found on each study site, and for ecological group richness based on light preference. The usual abiotic explanatory factors related to climate, topography and soil properties were used in the models. ALS data, available for two contrasting study sites, were used to provide biotic factors related to forest structure, which was assumed to be a key driver of understory biodiversity...
2017: PloS One
Anne-Sophie Fiorucci, Christian Fankhauser
Light is a vital resource for plants, which compete for it particularly in dense communities. Plants have multiple photosensory receptors to detect the presence of competitors and thereby adjust their growth and developmental strategies accordingly. Broadly speaking, plants fall into two categories depending on their response to shading by leaves: shade tolerant or shade avoiding. Here, we describe the photoperception mechanisms and the growth responses elicited by the neighboring vegetation in shade-avoiding plants, focusing on Arabidopsis thaliana, where these responses are best understood...
September 11, 2017: Current Biology: CB
Cody R Dangerfield, Nalini M Nadkarni, William J Brazelton
Trees of temperate rainforests host a large biomass of epiphytic plants, which are associated with soils formed in the forest canopy. Falling of epiphytic material results in the transfer of carbon and nutrients from the canopy to the forest floor. This study provides the first characterization of bacterial communities in canopy soils enabled by high-depth environmental sequencing of 16S rRNA genes. Canopy soil included many of the same major taxonomic groups of Bacteria that are also found in ground soil, but canopy bacterial communities were lower in diversity and contained different operational taxonomic units...
2017: PeerJ
Bernd Blossey, Andrea Dávalos, Victoria Nuzzo
Management of ungulates is contested ground that lacks stakeholder agreement on desirable population sizes and management approaches. Unfortunately, we often miss information about extent of local impacts, for example on plant communities, to guide management decisions. Typical vegetation impact assessments like the woody browse index do not assess herbaceous plants, and differences in browse severity can be a function of deer density, deer legacy effects, localized deer feeding preferences and/or differences in plant community composition...
September 2017: AoB Plants
Wajeeha Saeed, Saadia Naseem, Zahid Ali
Strigolactones (SLs), being a new class of plant hormones, play regulatory roles against abiotic stresses in plants. There are multiple hormonal response pathways, which are adapted by the plants to overcome these stressful environmental constraints to reduce the negative impact on overall crop plant productivity. Genetic modulation of the SLs could also be applied as a potential approach in this regard. However, endogenous plant hormones play central roles in adaptation to changing environmental conditions, by mediating growth, development, nutrient allocation, and source/sink transitions...
2017: Frontiers in Plant Science
Huan-San Zhao, Xi-Cun Zhu, Cheng Li, Yu Wei, Geng-Xing Zhao, Yuan-Mao Jiang
The influence of the equidistant sampling method was explored in a hyperspectral model for the accurate prediction of the water content of apple tree canopy. The relationship between spectral reflectance and water content was explored using the sample partition methods of equidistant sampling and random sampling, and a stepwise regression model of the apple canopy water content was established. The results showed that the random sampling model was Y = 0.4797 - 721787.3883 × Z3 - 766567.1103 × Z5 - 771392...
September 11, 2017: Scientific Reports
E Nestola, A Scartazza, D Di Baccio, A Castagna, A Ranieri, M Cammarano, F Mazzenga, G Matteucci, C Calfapietra
This study investigates the functionality of a Mediterranean-mountain beech forest in Central Italy using simultaneous determinations of optical measurements, carbon (C) fluxes, leaf eco-physiological and biochemical traits during two growing seasons (2014-2015). Meteorological variables showed significant differences between the two growing seasons, highlighting a heat stress coupled with a reduced water availability in mid-summer 2015. As a result, a different C sink capacity of the forest was observed between the two years of study, due to the differences in stressful conditions and the related plant physiological status...
September 6, 2017: Science of the Total Environment
Edward Lagucki, Justin D Burdine, Kevin E McCluney
Urbanization transforms undeveloped landscapes into built environments, causing changes in communities and ecological processes. Flying arthropods play important roles in these processes as pollinators, decomposers, and predators, and can be important in structuring food webs. The goal of this study was to identify associations between urbanization and the composition of communities of flying (and floating) arthropods within gardens and parks in a medium-sized mesic city. We predicted that flying arthropod abundance and diversity would respond strongly to percent impervious surface and distance to city center, measurements of urbanization...
2017: PeerJ
Luigi Piazzi, Giulia Ceccherelli
The study aimed at investigating factors influencing the recovery of the canopy seaweed Cystoseira brachycarpa. A manipulative experiment was done to test if in barren patches the recovery of Cystoseira I) is enhanced by the removal of the urchins, II) is prevented by eutrophication, III) depends on the time of patch clearance and IV) decreases with the distance from Cystoseira bed edge within the barren patch. The effects of the same factors on the structure of the macroalgal assemblage were also tested. Cystoseira recovered abundantly only in clearings where nutrients were not added and urchins were removed...
September 5, 2017: Marine Pollution Bulletin
Alessandro Ossola, Matthew E Hopton
The spatial arrangement of urban vegetation depends on urban morphology and socio-economic settings. Urban vegetation changes over time because of human management. Urban trees are removed due to hazard prevention or aesthetic preferences. Previous research attributed tree loss to decreases in canopy cover. However, this provides little information about location and structural characteristics of trees lost, as well as environmental and social factors affecting tree loss dynamics. This is particularly relevant in residential landscapes where access to residential parcels for field surveys is limited...
September 5, 2017: Science of the Total Environment
Marden Seabra Linares, Marcos Callisto, João Carlos Marques
Riparian vegetation cover influences benthic assemblages structure and functioning in headwater streams, as it regulates light availability and autochthonous primary production in these ecosystems.Secondary production, diversity, and exergy-based indicators were applied in capturing how riparian cover influences the structure and functioning of benthic macroinvertebrate assemblages in tropical headwater streams. Four hypotheses were tested: (1) open canopy will determine the occurrence of higher diversity in benthic macroinvertebrate assemblages; (2) streams with open canopy will exhibit more complex benthic macroinvertebrate communities (in terms of information embedded in the organisms' biomass); (3) in streams with open canopy benthic macroinvertebrate assemblages will be more efficient in using the available resources to build structure, which will be reflected by higher eco-exergy values; (4) benthic assemblages in streams with open canopy will exhibit more secondary productivity...
September 5, 2017: Science of the Total Environment
B C Norman, M R Whiles, S M Collins, A S Flecker, S K Hamilton, S L Johnson, E J Rosi-Marshall, L R Ashkenas, W B Bowden, C L Crenshaw, T Crowl, W K Dodds, R O Hall, R El-Sabaawi, N A Griffiths, E Marti, W H McDowell, S D Peterson, H M Rantala, T Riis, K S Simon, J L Tank, S A Thomas, D von Schiller, J R Webster
Studies of trophic-level material and energy transfers are central to ecology. The use of isotopic tracers has now made it possible to measure trophic transfer efficiencies of important nutrients and to better understand how these materials move through food webs. We analyzed data from thirteen (15) N-ammonium tracer addition experiments to quantify N transfer from basal resources to animals in headwater streams with varying physical, chemical, and biological features. N transfer efficiencies from primary uptake compartments (PUCs; heterotrophic microorganisms and primary producers) to primary consumers was lower (mean: 11...
September 7, 2017: Ecology
Dasaraden Mauree, Silvia Coccolo, Jérôme Kaempf, Jean-Louis Scartezzini
A new methodology is proposed to couple a meteorological model with a building energy use model. The aim of such a coupling is to improve the boundary conditions of both models with no significant increase in computational time. In the present case, the Canopy Interface Model (CIM) is coupled with CitySim. CitySim provides the geometrical characteristics to CIM, which then calculates a high resolution profile of the meteorological variables. These are in turn used by CitySim to calculate the energy flows in an urban district...
2017: PloS One
Jürgen Knauer, Sönke Zaehle, Belinda E Medlyn, Markus Reichstein, Christopher A Williams, Mirco Migliavacca, Martin G De Kauwe, Christiane Werner, Claudia Keitel, Pasi Kolari, Jean-Marc Limousin, Maj-Lena Linderson
Intrinsic water-use efficiency (iWUE) characterizes the physiological control on the simultaneous exchange of water and carbon dioxide in terrestrial ecosystems. Knowledge of iWUE is commonly gained from leaf-level gas exchange measurements, which are inevitably restricted in their spatial and temporal coverage. Flux measurements based on the eddy covariance (EC) technique can overcome these limitations, as they provide continuous and long-term records of carbon and water fluxes at the ecosystem scale. However, vegetation gas exchange parameters derived from EC data are subject to scale-dependent and method-specific uncertainties that compromise their ecophysiological interpretation as well as their comparability among ecosystems and across spatial scales...
September 5, 2017: Global Change Biology
Steve Frolking, Stephen Hagen, Bobby Braswell, Tom Milliman, Christina Herrick, Seth Peterson, Dar Roberts, Michael Keller, Michael Palace
Amazonia has experienced large-scale regional droughts that affect forest productivity and biomass stocks. Space-borne remote sensing provides basin-wide data on impacts of meteorological anomalies, an important complement to relatively limited ground observations across the Amazon's vast and remote humid tropical forests. Morning overpass QuikScat Ku-band microwave backscatter from the forest canopy was anomalously low during the 2005 drought, relative to the full instrument record of 1999-2009, and low morning backscatter persisted for 2006-2009, after which the instrument failed...
2017: PloS One
M F Lima, S I C Carvalho, C F Ragassi, L B Bianchetti, F G Faleiro, F J B Reifschneider
Germplasm banks are essential as sources of genetic variability for plant breeding programs. To characterize a Brazilian Capsicum frutescens collection, 21 malagueta and 5 Tabasco hot pepper accessions were evaluated under field and greenhouse conditions regarding morphological and molecular traits, as well as resistance to viruses. Morphological characterization was performed using 53 IPGRI (International Plant Genetic Resources Institute) descriptors, 15 vegetative, 13 inflorescence, 22 fruit, and 3 seed...
August 31, 2017: Genetics and Molecular Research: GMR
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