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Nobuhide Kido, Iori Itagaki, Daisuke Kiryu, Tomoko Omiya, Kaori Ono
Two radiated tortoises (Astrochelys radiata) exhibited anorexia and hypokinesia. In both cases, hematological and serum biochemical examinations revealed high alkaline phosphatase levels, moderately high aspartate aminotransferase levels and white blood cell counts approximately within the normal range. Despite being treated, the tortoises died 9 and 43 days after the first clinical examination. Gross pathological examinations revealed that the livers of both animals were extremely swollen and contained pale yellow necrotic tissue...
October 16, 2016: Journal of Veterinary Medical Science
Jacques M Pasteels, Olivier Deparis, Sébastien R Mouchet, Donald M Windsor, Johan Billen
Charidotella ambita offers a unique opportunity for unambiguously locating its gold reflector by comparing the structure of reflecting and non-reflecting cuticle of the elytron and pronotum. Using light microscopy and TEM, the reflector was located underneath the macrofiber endocuticle just above the epidermis. The reflector is a multilayer comprising up to 50 bilayers alternating high and low density layers parallel to the surface of the cuticle. It is chirped, i.e., showing a progressive decrease in layer thickness from approximately 150 nm to 100 nm across its depth...
October 7, 2016: Arthropod Structure & Development
Tom Hellebuyck, Richard Ducatelle, Leslie Bosseler, Annemie Van Caelenberg, Han Versnaeyen, Koen Chiers, An Martel
Neoplastic disorders are frequently encountered in the practice of reptile medicine. Herein we report the clinical behavior, antemortem diagnosis, and histopathologic characteristics of a recurrent intraoral keratinizing basal cell carcinoma (BCC) and a metastatic BCC of the carapace in 2 Hermann's tortoises (Testudo hermanni). Although squamous cell carcinomas (SCCs) in tortoises show similar predilection sites and gross pathologic features, the BCCs described in our report were characterized by a remarkably fast and highly infiltrative growth in comparison to SCCs...
November 2016: Journal of Veterinary Diagnostic Investigation
Jinxing Ma, Di He, Richard N Collins, Chuanshu He, T David Waite
A comparative study of the ability of microparticulate zerovalent iron (mZVI) and nanoparticulate zerovalent iron (nZVI) to oxidize a target compound (in this study, (14)C-labelled formate) under aerobic conditions has been conducted with specific consideration given to differences in reaction mechanisms. Results of Fe K-edge extended X-ray absorption fine structure (EXAFS) spectroscopy showed that mZVI underwent a slow transformation to ferrihydrite while nZVI, in contrast, rapidly transformed into lepidocrocite...
November 15, 2016: Water Research
Evelyn L Jensen, Arne Ø Mooers, Adalgisa Caccone, Michael A Russello
In the midst of the current biodiversity crisis, conservation efforts might profitably be directed towards ensuring that extinctions do not result in inordinate losses of evolutionary history. Numerous methods have been developed to evaluate the importance of species based on their contribution to total phylogenetic diversity on trees and networks, but existing methods fail to take complementarity into account, and thus cannot identify the best order or subset of taxa to protect. Here, we develop a novel iterative calculation of the heightened evolutionary distinctiveness and globally endangered metric (I-HEDGE) that produces the optimal ranked list for conservation prioritization, taking into account complementarity and based on both phylogenetic diversity and extinction probability...
2016: PeerJ
Chulwoo Shin
The genus Eurypedus Gistel is revised based on detailed morphological study, including examination of the mouthparts and genitalia. Besides previously known diagnostic characters, such as an oblong and laterally parallel-sided body, narrow elytral lamella, narrow prosternal process between the procoxae, and angled pronotal base, new diagnostic characters are identified: antennal notches on the ventral surface of antennomeres V-XI, a stridulatory file on the vertex, and paired projections on the ventral surface of the pronotum...
2016: Zootaxa
Jean P Elbers, Rachel W Clostio, Sabrina S Taylor
Single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) are replacing microsatellites for population genetic analyses, but it is not apparent how many SNPs are needed or how well SNPs correlate with microsatellites. We used data from the gopher tortoise, Gopherus polyphemus - a species with small populations, to compare SNPs and microsatellites to estimate population genetic parameters. Specifically, we compared one SNP dataset (16 tortoises from 4 populations sequenced at 17,901 SNPs) to two microsatellite datasets, a full dataset of 101 tortoises and a partial dataset of 16 tortoises previously genotyped at 10 microsatellites...
August 4, 2016: Molecular Ecology Resources
Beatriz Garcia-Morante, Judit J Pénzes, Taiana Costa, Jaime Martorell, Jorge Martínez
A 2-year-old female, spur-thighed tortoise (Testudo graeca) was presented with poor body condition (1/5) and weakness. Fecal analysis revealed large numbers of oxyurid-like eggs, and radiographs were compatible with gastrointestinal obstruction. Despite supportive medical treatment, the animal died. At gross examination, an intestinal obstruction was confirmed. Histopathology revealed severe hyperplastic esophagitis and stomatitis with marked epithelial cytomegaly and enormous basophilic intranuclear inclusion bodies...
September 2016: Journal of Veterinary Diagnostic Investigation
Khemraj Budachetri, Daniel Gaillard, Jaclyn Williams, Nabanita Mukherjee, Shahid Karim
The gopher tortoise tick, Amblyomma tuberculatum, has a unique relationship with the gopher tortoise, Gopherus polyphemus, found in sandy habitats across the southeastern United States. We aimed to understand the overall bacterial community associated with A. tuberculatum while also focusing on spotted fever group Rickettsia. These tortoises in the Southern Mississippi region are a federally threatened species; therefore, we have carefully trapped the tortoises and removed the species-specific ticks attached to them...
October 2016: Ticks and Tick-borne Diseases
Paul A Taylor, A Alhamud, Andre van der Kouwe, Muhammad G Saleh, Barbara Laughton, Ernesta Meintjes
Diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) is susceptible to several artifacts due to eddy currents, echo planar imaging (EPI) distortion and subject motion. While several techniques correct for individual distortion effects, no optimal combination of DTI acquisition and processing has been determined. Here, the effects of several motion correction techniques are investigated while also correcting for EPI distortion: prospective correction, using navigation; retrospective correction, using two different popular packages (FSL and TORTOISE); and the combination of both methods...
July 20, 2016: Human Brain Mapping
Manuela Schmidt, Martin Mehlhorn, Martin S Fischer
Studies into the function of structures are crucial for making connections between morphology and behaviour of organisms, but are still rare for the terrestrial Testudinidae. We investigated the kinematics of shoulder girdle and forelimb motion in Hermann's tortoise Testudo hermanni using biplanar X-ray fluoroscopy with a twofold aim: firstly, to understand how the derived shapes of shoulder girdle and carapace together influence rotation of the girdle; and, secondly, to understand how girdle rotation affects forelimb excursion...
September 1, 2016: Journal of Experimental Biology
Guillaume Bastille-Rousseau, Charles B Yackulic, Jacqueline L Frair, Freddy Cabrera, Stephen Blake
Understanding how individual movement scales with body size is of fundamental importance in predicting ecological relationships for diverse species. One-dimensional movement metrics scale consistently with body size yet vary over different temporal scales. Knowing how temporal scale influences the relationship between animal body size and movement would better inform hypotheses about the efficiency of foraging behaviour, the ontogeny of energy budgets, and numerous life-history trade-offs. We investigated how the temporal scaling of allometric patterns in movement varies over the course of a year, specifically during periods of motivated (directional and fast movement) and unmotivated (stationary and tortuous movement) behaviour...
September 2016: Journal of Animal Ecology
Xiaolong Zhao, Jigen Tang, Zhou Gu, Jilong Shi, Yimin Yang, Changsui Wang
Oracle Bone Inscriptions in the Shang dynasty (1600-1046 BC) are the earliest well-developed writing forms of the Chinese character system, and their carving techniques have not been studied by tool marks analysis with microscopy. In this study, a digital microscope with three-dimensional surface reconstruction based on extended depth of focus technology was used to investigate tool marks on the surface of four pieces of oracle bones excavated at the eastern area of Huayuanzhuang, Yinxu site(ca., 1319-1046 BC), the last capital of the Shang dynasty, Henan province, China...
September 2016: Microscopy Research and Technique
Ekaterina Kolesnik, Frank Mittenzwei, Rachel E Marschang
Several animals from a mixed species collection of tortoises in Germany died unexpectedly. Some of the affected leopard tortoises (Stigmochelys pardalis) from this group showed respiratory signs. Samples were collected from one of the ill tortoises, and a Mycoplasma spp. and a herpesvirus were detected by PCR. Sequencing of a portion of the DNA polymerase gene of the herpesvirus showed 99% identity with testudinid herpesvirus 4, previously described only once in a bowsprit tortoise (Chersina angulata) in the United States...
August 17, 2016: Tierärztliche Praxis. Ausgabe K, Kleintiere/Heimtiere
Alessandra Piccirillo, Giulia Niero, Lucía Calleros, Ruben Pérez, Hugo Naya, Gregorio Iraola
During a screening study to determine the presence of Campylobacter spp. in reptiles, three putative strains (RC7, RC11, and RC20) were isolated from different individuals of the western Hermann's tortoise (Testudo hermanni hermanni). Initially, these isolates were characterized as C. fetus subsp. fetus by multiplex PCR and partial 16S rRNA gene sequence analysis. Further whole genome characterization revealed considerable differences compared to other Campylobacter species. A polyphasic study was then undertaken to determine the exact taxonomic position of the isolates...
June 6, 2016: International Journal of Systematic and Evolutionary Microbiology
Guillaume Bastille-Rousseau, Jonathan R Potts, Charles B Yackulic, Jacqueline L Frair, E Hance Ellington, Stephen Blake
BACKGROUND: Characterizing the movement patterns of animals is an important step in understanding their ecology. Various methods have been developed for classifying animal movement at both coarse (e.g., migratory vs. sedentary behavior) and fine (e.g., resting vs. foraging) scales. A popular approach for classifying movements at coarse resolutions involves fitting time series of net-squared displacement (NSD) to models representing different conceptualizations of coarse movement strategies (i...
2016: Movement Ecology
João Fabrício Mota Rodrigues, José Alexandre Felizola Diniz-Filho
Habitat may be viewed as an important life history component potentially related to diversification patterns. However, differences in diversification rates between aquatic and terrestrial realms are still poorly explored. Testudines is a group distributed worldwide that lives in aquatic and terrestrial environments, but until now no-one has evaluated the diversification history of the group as a whole. We aim here to investigate the diversification history of turtles and to test if habitat influenced speciation rate in these animals...
August 2016: Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution
G Tiar, M Tiar-Saadi, S Benyacoub, R Rouag, P Široký
Hyalomma aegyptium (Linnaeus, 1758) (Ixodida: Ixodidae) has recently been confirmed as a carrier of numerous pathogenic, including zoonotic, agents. Four environmentally distinct regions of Algeria, located between the humid coastal zone and the arid Saharan Atlas range, were selected in order to compare differences in tick abundance among localities, and the correlations between tick abundance and host population characteristics and other environmental conditions. Sampling was carried out during May and early June in 2010-2012...
September 2016: Medical and Veterinary Entomology
Maike Prütz, Michael Fehr, Karina Mathes, Stephan Hungerbühler
An echocardiographic examination was carried out in 71 European tortoises (Testudo spp.) via the cervical-brachial acoustic windows. Simultaneously an electrocardiographic examination was performed. The inflow- and outflow tract of the heart were presented in frontal and sagittal longitudinal sections in B-mode. Within B-mode the size (diameter and area) of the atria and the ventricle (Cavum dorsale), the ventricular wall thickness and the diameter of the origin of the right aorta and of the right Arteria pulmonalis were measured...
March 2016: Berliner und Münchener Tierärztliche Wochenschrift
Maike Prütz, Stephan Hungerbühler, Michael Fehr, Karina Mathes
25 formalin-fixed hearts of different tortoise species (Testudinidae) underwent gross-anatomical examination. The aim of the study was to illustrate the specific anatomy of the heart of these species in comparison to the data available in the literature. The examined tortoises showed the well-known basic structure of a reptile heart with two atria and a ventricle composed of three interconnected chambers. The right atrium was consistently slightly larger than the left atrium. The atrioventricular (AV-) valves emerged as double-flap valves, whereby the lateral leaflets were only present in a rudimentary form...
March 2016: Berliner und Münchener Tierärztliche Wochenschrift
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