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Katharina Steyer, Annika Tiesmeyer, Violeta Muñoz-Fuentes, Carsten Nowak
Hybridization between wild species and their domestic congeners is considered a major threat for wildlife conservation. Genetic integrity of the European wildcat, for instance, is a concern as they are outnumbered by domestic cats by several orders of magnitude throughout its range. We genotyped 1,071 individual wildcat samples obtained from hair traps and roadkills collected across the highly fragmented forests of western Central Europe, in Germany and Luxembourg, to assess domestic cat introgression in wildcats in human-dominated landscapes...
February 2018: Ecology and Evolution
Stéphanie Bourgeois, Helen Senn, Jenny Kaden, John B Taggart, Rob Ogden, Kathryn J Jeffery, Nils Bunnefeld, Katharine Abernethy, Ross McEwing
The continuing decline in forest elephant ( Loxodonta cyclotis ) numbers due to poaching and habitat reduction is driving the search for new tools to inform management and conservation. For dense rainforest species, basic ecological data on populations and threats can be challenging and expensive to collect, impeding conservation action in the field. As such, genetic monitoring is being increasingly implemented to complement or replace more burdensome field techniques. Single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) are particularly cost-effective and informative markers that can be used for a range of practical applications, including population census, assessment of human impact on social and genetic structure, and investigation of the illegal wildlife trade...
February 2018: Ecology and Evolution
Estelle Camizuli, Renaud Scheifler, Stéphane Garnier, Fabrice Monna, Rémi Losno, Claude Gourault, Gilles Hamm, Caroline Lachiche, Guillaume Delivet, Carmela Chateau, Paul Alibert
Throughout history, ancient human societies exploited mineral resources all over the world, even in areas that are now protected and considered to be relatively pristine. Here, we show that past mining still has an impact on wildlife in some French protected areas. We measured cadmium, copper, lead, and zinc concentrations in topsoils and wood mouse kidneys from sites located in the Cévennes and the Morvan. The maximum levels of metals in these topsoils are one or two orders of magnitude greater than their commonly reported mean values in European topsoils...
February 21, 2018: Scientific Reports
Morten Tryland, Kimberlee Beth Beckmen, Kathleen Ann Burek-Huntington, Eva Marie Breines, Joern Klein
BACKGROUND: The zoonotic Orf virus (ORFV; genus Parapoxvirus, Poxviridae family) occurs worldwide and is transmitted between sheep and goats, wildlife and man. Archived tissue samples from 16 Alaskan wildlife cases, representing mountain goat (Oreamnos americanus, n = 8), Dall's sheep (Ovis dalli dalli, n = 3), muskox (Ovibos moschatus, n = 3), Sitka black-tailed deer (Odocoileus hemionus sitkensis, n = 1) and caribou (Rangifer tarandus granti, n = 1), were analyzed. RESULTS: Clinical signs and pathology were most severe in mountain goats, affecting most mucocutaneous regions, including palpebrae, nares, lips, anus, prepuce or vulva, as well as coronary bands...
February 21, 2018: Acta Veterinaria Scandinavica
Anaiá da Paixão Sevá, Hilda Fátima de Jesus Pena, Alessandra Nava, Amanda Oliveira de Sousa, Luciane Holsback, Rodrigo Martins Soares
Morro do Diabo State Park (MDSP) is a significant remnant of the Atlantic Rain Forest in Brazil and is surrounded by rural properties. In that area, wild and domestic animals and humans are in close contact, which facilitates the two-way flow of infectious diseases among them. We assessed endoparasites in domestic livestock from all rural properties surrounding MDSP. There were sampled 197 cattle, 37 horses, 11 sheep, 25 swine, 21 dogs, one cat and 62 groups of chickens from 10 large private properties and 75 rural settlements...
February 19, 2018: Revista Brasileira de Parasitologia Veterinária, Brazilian Journal of Veterinary Parasitology
Mark A Hayes, Antoinette J Piaggio
Common vampire bats (Desmodus rotundus) occur throughout much of South America to northern México. Vampire bats have not been documented in recent history in the United States, but have been documented within about 50 km of the U.S. state of Texas. Vampire bats feed regularly on the blood of mammals and can transmit rabies virus to native species and livestock, causing impacts on the health of prey. Thus cattle producers, wildlife management agencies, and other stakeholders have expressed concerns about whether vampire bats might spread into the southern United States...
2018: PloS One
Masimba Ndengu, Gift Matope, Musavengana Tivapasi, Massimo Scacchia, Barbara Bonfini, Davis Mubika Pfukenyi, Michel de Garine-Wichatitsky
A study was conducted to investigate the seroprevalence and associated risk factors of Chlamydia abortus infection in cattle and some selected wildlife species at selected interface areas at the periphery of the Great Limpopo Transfrontier Conservation Area in Zimbabwe. Three study sites were selected based on the type of livestock-wildlife interface, porous livestock-wildlife interface (unrestricted), non-porous livestock-wildlife interface (restricted by fencing), and livestock-wildlife non-interface (totally absent or control)...
February 20, 2018: Tropical Animal Health and Production
Carjone Rosa Gonçalves, Aline Teixeira Marins, Aline Monique Blank do Amaral, Jossiele Leitemperger, Eduardo Stringini Severo, Bibiana Silveira Moraes, Renato Zanella, Vania Lucia Loro
Although designed to control pests selectively, there is some evidence that environmental contamination by pesticides increases risks for humans and wildlife. In the present study, we evaluated biomarkers of oxidative stress in Astyanax jacuhiensis exposed to (5, 15 and 30 µg L-1 ) of carbamate Propoxur (PPX) for 96 h. Glutathione S-transferase (GST) in liver and gills showed reduced activity in all PPX concentrations tested. Acetylcholinesterase (AChE) activities reduced in brain and muscle at concentrations 15 and 30 µg L-1 of PPX...
February 20, 2018: Bulletin of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology
Kendall M Davis, Michael N Nguyen, Maureen R McClung, Matthew D Moran
The United States energy industry is transforming with the rapid development of alternative energy sources and technological advancements in fossil fuels. Two major changes include the growth of wind turbines and unconventional oil and gas. We measured land-use impacts and associated ecosystem services costs of unconventional gas and wind energy development within the Anadarko Basin of the Oklahoma Woodford Shale, an area that has experienced large increases in both energy sectors. Unconventional gas wells developed three times as much land compared to wind turbines (on a per unit basis), resulting in higher ecosystem services costs for gas...
February 19, 2018: Environmental Management
Chandra Prakash Sharma, Ajit Kumar, Vipin, Vinita Sharma, Bhim Singh, Gandla Chethan Kumar, Sandeep Kumar Gupta
We examined an online sold product "Hatha Jodi" synonym of "paired arm" for the confirmation of its biological source. It was declared as a plant root. The morphological features of these samples were matched with the "intromittent organs" or "hemi penis" of the monitor lizard. For further confirmation, we used sequencing of a partial fragment of mitochondrial DNA cytochrome b gene. Sequence comparison indicated that these claimed plant products were actually biological samples of a common monitor lizard, Varanus bengalensis...
February 19, 2018: International Journal of Legal Medicine
Benjamin Geffroy, Bastien Sadoul, Amine Bouchareb, Sylvain Prigent, Jean-Paul Bourdineaud, Maria Gonzalez-Rey, Rosana N Morais, Maritana Mela, Lucélia Nobre Carvalho, Eduardo Bessa
Nature-based tourism is gaining extensive popularity, increasing the intensity and frequency of human-wildlife contacts. As a consequence, behavioral and physiological alterations were observed in most exposed animals. However, while the majority of these studies investigated the effects of punctual exposure to tourists, the consequences of constant exposition to humans in the wild remains overlooked. This is an important gap considering the exponential interest for recreational outdoor activities. To infer long-term effects of intensive tourism, we capitalized on Odontostilbe pequira , a short-lived sedentary Tetra fish who spends its life close to humans, on which it feeds on dead skin...
2018: Frontiers in Physiology
A M Buenfil-Rojas, T Alvarez-Legorreta, J R Cedeño-Vázquez
Even though studies of heavy metals and their relation with metallothioneins (MTs) in reptile tissues have been conducted, research on heavy metals and MTs in organs and blood fractions of crocodylians is limited. To date there are no studies on the distribution of MTs in organs and their relation with mercury (Hg), or the concentration of MTs in plasma and erythrocytes of crocodylians. In order to understand the role of MTs in crocodiles, our aim was to assess the detoxification mechanisms for exposure to metals in Morelet's crocodile (Crocodylus moreletii) by using two biomarkers (Hg and MTs) in blood fractions and tissues, and comparing them with concentrations between two populations of crocodiles, one previously wild and currently captive (Theme Park) and another raised in a Wildlife Management Unit (WMU)...
February 14, 2018: Chemosphere
Nicola Pratt, Sreekumari Rajeev
This systematic review summarises the data published on the Leptospira seroprevalence, serovar diversity and distribution among animal species in the Caribbean region. Following Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analysis (PRISMA) guidelines, and checklist, relevant articles were identified and data were extracted and recorded. The review provided Leptospira seroprevalence data from 16 Caribbean islands (Barbados, Trinidad, Grenada, Puerto Rico, Saint Croix, St. Kitts and Nevis, Jamaica, Antigua, Carriacou, Dominica, Guadalupe, Martinique, Monserrat, St...
February 16, 2018: Acta Tropica
Mimi Arandjelovic, Linda Vigilant
Knowing the density or abundance of primate populations is essential for their conservation management and contextualizing socio-demographic and behavioral observations. When direct counts of animals are not possible, genetic analysis of non-invasive samples collected from wildlife populations allows estimates of population size with higher accuracy and precision than is possible using indirect signs. Furthermore, in contrast to traditional indirect survey methods, prolonged or periodic genetic sampling across months or years enables inference of group membership, movement, dynamics, and some kin relationships...
February 19, 2018: American Journal of Primatology
Maria Voigt, Serge A Wich, Marc Ancrenaz, Erik Meijaard, Nicola Abram, Graham L Banes, Gail Campbell-Smith, Laura J d'Arcy, Roberto A Delgado, Andi Erman, David Gaveau, Benoit Goossens, Stefanie Heinicke, Max Houghton, Simon J Husson, Ashley Leiman, Karmele Llano Sanchez, Niel Makinuddin, Andrew J Marshall, Ari Meididit, Jukka Miettinen, Roger Mundry, Musnanda, Nardiyono, Anton Nurcahyo, Kisar Odom, Adventus Panda, Didik Prasetyo, Aldrianto Priadjati, Purnomo, Andjar Rafiastanto, Anne E Russon, Truly Santika, Jamartin Sihite, Stephanie Spehar, Matthew Struebig, Enrique Sulbaran-Romero, Albertus Tjiu, Jessie Wells, Kerrie A Wilson, Hjalmar S Kühl
Unsustainable exploitation of natural resources is increasingly affecting the highly biodiverse tropics [1, 2]. Although rapid developments in remote sensing technology have permitted more precise estimates of land-cover change over large spatial scales [3-5], our knowledge about the effects of these changes on wildlife is much more sparse [6, 7]. Here we use field survey data, predictive density distribution modeling, and remote sensing to investigate the impact of resource use and land-use changes on the density distribution of Bornean orangutans (Pongo pygmaeus)...
February 12, 2018: Current Biology: CB
Maryam Shabbir, Adelynn M Y Zon, Vivek Thuppil
Animals attend to what is relevant in order to behave in an effective manner and succeed in their environments. In several nonhuman species, there is an evolved bias for attending to patterns indicative of threats in the natural environment such as dangerous animals. Because skins of many dangerous animals are typically repetitive, we propose that repetition is the key feature enabling recognition of evolutionarily important threats. The current study consists of two experiments where we measured participants' reactions to pictures of male and female models wearing clothing of various repeating (leopard skin, snakeskin, and floral print) and nonrepeating (camouflage, shiny, and plain) patterns...
January 2018: Evolutionary Psychology: An International Journal of Evolutionary Approaches to Psychology and Behavior
Janine E Robinson, Pablo Sinovas
International wildlife trade can represent a major threat to biodiversity conservation. Annually, billions of plants, animals and their products are traded across international borders, with legal trade alone estimated to be worth over 320 billion USD per annum (TRAFFIC 2009). This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
February 17, 2018: Conservation Biology: the Journal of the Society for Conservation Biology
Paige E Howell, Erin Muths, Blake R Hossack, Brent H Sigafus, Richard B Chandler
Metapopulation ecology and landscape ecology aim to understand how spatial structure influences ecological processes, yet these disciplines address the problem using fundamentally different modeling approaches. Metapopulation models describe how the spatial distribution of patches affects colonization and extinction, but often do not account for the heterogeneity in the landscape between patches. Models in landscape ecology use detailed descriptions of landscape structure, but often without considering colonization and extinction dynamics...
February 17, 2018: Ecology
Charlotte H Chang, Krithi K Karanth, Paul Robbins
Coffee is a major tropical commodity crop that can provide supplementary habitat for native wildlife. In Asia, coffee production is an increasingly important driver of landscape transformation and shifts between different coffee species is a major dimension of agroforestry trends. Yet few studies have compared the ecological impacts of conversion between different coffee species. We evaluated whether or not the two species of coffee grown globally-Coffea arabica and C. canephora (denoted "robusta")-had equivalent avian conservation value in the Western Ghats, India, where robusta production has become increasingly dominant...
February 16, 2018: Scientific Reports
Amy Zhang, Tomoko Y Steen
The Chernobyl and Fukushima nuclear accidents have called forth a growing body of research on their biological aftermaths. A variety of wild organisms, including primates, birds, fish, insects, and worms are being studied in the affected areas, with emerging morphological, physiological, and genetic aberrations ascribed to ionizing radiation. Despite the effort in surveying Chernobyl and Fukushima wildlife, little is known about the microorganisms associated with these radiation-contaminated animals. The microbiota, especially the gut commensal, plays an important role in shaping the metabolic reservoir and immune system of the host, and is sensitive to a wide array of environmental factors, including ionizing radiation...
February 14, 2018: Journal of Heredity
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