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  Subjects -> CONSERVATION (Total: 128 journals)
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Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution
Number of Followers: 49  

  This is an Open Access Journal Open Access journal
ISSN (Online) 2296-701X
Published by Frontiers Media Homepage  [96 journals]
  • Study on the coupling coordination effect and dynamic relationship between
           tourism development and the ecological environment: a case study of Hainan
           Island

    • Authors: Chongqing Zhong, Xiaowei Wu, Peihong Jia, Kehui Zhang
      Abstract: As a Free Trade Port in China, the protection of ecological environment and high-quality tourism development on Hainan Island have become a national strategy. Exploring the coupling relationship of the two subsystems holds great practical significance for promoting the island’s international demonstration area and high-quality development. Based on the characteristics of international islands, a comprehensive index system is established to explore the coupling coordination evolutionary process and interactive stress relationship of tourism development and the ecological environment in Hainan Island from 2005 to 2020. The results show: (1) From 2005 to 2019, the comprehensive evaluation index of the two subsystems of Hainan Island generally showed a continuous growth trend. (2) From 2005 to 2019, the coupling degree of the two subsystems of Hainan Island strengthened continuously, the coupling coordination degree increased steadily from a moderate imbalance to good coordination, and tourism development and the ecological environment entered a stage of parallel and benign interactive development. (3) In 2020, affected by COVID-19, the tourism development indicators declined rapidly, while the ecological environment still maintained a rising trend. (4) Based on the inverted U-shaped curve model, when the tourism development index reaches 0.7269, the ecological environment quality reaches the maximum value of 0.7956, which is the best state between the two subsystems. The ecological environment and tourism development of Hainan Island are generally in a benign interaction, but there are signs of interactive stress starting in 2017. In the future, the pressure on the ecological environment of Hainan Island will increase.
      PubDate: 2024-02-23T00:00:00Z
       
  • Enhancing multiple benefits of brownfield cleanups by applying ecosystem
           services concepts

    • Authors: Brooke Mastervich, Kelly Garbach, Matthew C. Harwell
      Abstract: Brownfields are increasingly called upon to be transformed from potentially contaminated, often vacant properties into community assets that provide multiple benefits. Further, brownfields revitalization can provide critical opportunities and, particularly, nature-based solutions can enhance multiple ecological, human health, and economic benefits. Through a series of non-exhaustive surveys of existing examples of environmental benefits of cleanups, case study examples of brownfield cleanups achieving environmental benefits, and potential ecosystem services tools relevant to steps of a brownfields cleanup effort, we explore practical ideas for enhancing environmental benefits of brownfields cleanups by applying ecosystem services concepts. Examples of nature-based solutions, where appropriate, include the use of rain gardens, permeable pavements, green spaces, and the use of green technologies. Further, this article provides an overview of recent policy initiatives focused on nature-based solutions and enhancing ecosystem services in brownfields cleanup, revitalization, and reuse. Our goals are to increase the knowledge base on these opportunities and discuss how these concepts can be achieved through sharing success stories, making outreach materials accessible, and holding workshops to help successfully operationalize these concepts in a community’s visioning for upcoming revitalization projects.
      PubDate: 2024-02-23T00:00:00Z
       
  • Editorial: Chemosensory receptor systems of invertebrates, from expression
           to function: protein targeting, interactions with ligands, pharmacology,
           and pest management strategies

    • Authors: Alberto Maria Cattaneo, William B. Walker
      PubDate: 2024-02-23T00:00:00Z
       
  • Characteristics of the spatio-temporal evolution of the improved
           integrated ecological effect index (IEEI) in mountainous province based on
           remote sensing: a case study in Yunnan province of southwest China

    • Authors: Renyi Yang, Zisheng Yang, Changbiao Zhong, Yimei He
      Abstract: Land use/cover change (LUCC) and the evaluation of its ecological effects are the important and key areas of research on global environmental change and sustainable development. In response to the problems and limitations of various methods of evaluating the ecological effects of LUCC, this article takes Yunnan Province, a mountainous province with a relatively fragile “innate” ecological environment, as the research area. Based on LUCC data from the interpretation of seven phases of remote sensing (RS) images taken in Yunnan, combined with the investigation of soil erosion data by using remote sensing technology, an improved integrated ecological effect index (IEEI) for the LUCC and a method for its evaluation are proposed; this index was applied to calculate the integrated ecological effect index for the LUCC and analyze its spatiotemporal evolution in 129 counties in Yunnan from 1990 to 2020. The spatiotemporal changes, characteristics, and laws of the integrated ecological effects of LUCC in the whole province and counties from 1990 to 2020 were revealed, with the goal of offering a fundamental framework for long-term strategic planning and management in mountainous provinces. Overall, in the past 30 years, the integrated ecological effect of Yunnan Province and various counties has significantly improved. However, the IEEI of the province is not yet very high, and its regional differences are significant. It is urgent to increase the efforts of ecological civilization construction (ECC) throughout the province, adopt practical and effective ecologically-friendly land use ways and ecological environment protection and construction measures according to local conditions, and steadily improve the integrated ecological effect of various regions.
      PubDate: 2024-02-22T00:00:00Z
       
  • Exploring genetic variation and phylogenetic patterns of Tropilaelaps
           mercedesae (Mesostigmata: Laelapidae) populations in
           Asia|Introduction|Material and methods|Results and discussion

    • Authors: Saeed Mohamadzade Namin, Omid Joharchi, Sunil Aryal, Ratna Thapa, Sun-Ho Kwon, Boymakhmat A. Kakhramanov, Chuleui Jung
      Abstract: IntroductionThe mites belonging to the genus Tropilaelaps are ectoparasites of honey bees, primarily infesting the larval and pupal stages. Originating from subtropical regions, these mites can cause brood malformation, bee mortality, and subsequent decline or absconding of colonies.Material and methodsDuring field surveys conducted in Nepal, South Korea, and Uzbekistan to investigate honey bee pests, several populations of T. mercedesae were collected. This is the first record of T. mercedesae from Uzbekistan. The morphological characteristics of the collected populations were analyzed, and their phylogenetic relationship with other Asian populations was examined.Results and discussionThe molecular analysis of cytochrome oxidase I gene revealed high similarity between Uzbekistan and Pakistan populations, signaling the potential invasion of subtropical honey bee parasites into the Central Asian beekeeping sectors. Phylogenetic analysis indicated the presence of four distinct lineages within the mainland-Indonesian populations of T. mercedesae. Notably, an evolutionary divergence was observed between the haplotypes from Sri Lanka and the Philippines compared to the remaining mainland Asian and Indonesian haplotypes, suggesting the possible existence of subspecies or separate species in these isolated locations. To gain a deeper understanding of this phenomenon, it is essential to continue monitoring the spread of this significant honey bee pest and conduct comprehensive morphological and molecular analyses of samples collected from these specific localities.
      PubDate: 2024-02-22T00:00:00Z
       
  • Fire dynamics and driving mechanisms on the Eastern Coast of China since
           the Late Pleistocene: evidence from charcoal records on Shengshan Island

    • Authors: Zhigang Wang, Cuiping Wang, Yao Zhang, Yuanyu Cheng, Shaofang Ren, Chengxin Yi, Hui Wang, Limin Zhou, Peng Qian, Xiangmin Zheng
      Abstract: Fires play a significant role in ecosystems, exerting a profound influence on climate, vegetation, and geochemical cycles, while being reciprocally affected by these factors. The reconstruction of past fire events serves as a valuable window into understanding environmental changes over time. To investigate the history of ancient fires on the Eastern Coast of China, we conducted the first charcoal analysis on a loess profile of Shengshan Island (East China Sea). Along with other biological and geochemical proxies, we successfully reconstructed the ancient fire dynamics and elucidated their driving mechanisms in this region since the Late Pleistocene. Our initial findings revealed a peak in charcoal concentration during the 60-50 ka period, but after calibrating for sedimentation rate, the concentration significantly decreased. Fire activities remained weak during 50-30 ka, likely due to the scarcity of combustible materials. Between 30-12 ka, fires were frequent in the early period, while gradually diminishing during the later stage. Dry climate and dense vegetation likely attributed to frequent fires in early period, while some extreme events (e.g., sudden change in temperature) may have decreased the fire frequency in later period. The Holocene (began ~12 ka) evidenced the most frequent fire events as a high charcoal concentration was recorded, likely caused by human activities. After comparing our findings with other paleoecological records from surrounding areas, we confirmed the accuracy of our reconstruction of ancient fires. This reconstruction captures not only local shifts but also broader regional changes. Overall, our study highlights the importance of calibrating sedimentation rate in charcoal profiles, while also contributing to an enhanced understanding of environmental changes along the Eastern Coast of China since the Late Pleistocene.
      PubDate: 2024-02-22T00:00:00Z
       
  • Spatio-temporal evolution and driving factors of regulating ecosystem
           service value: a case study of Poyang Lake Area, China

    • Authors: Yaobin Liu, Nan Huang, Chenghao Liu, Shuoshuo Li, Biagio Fernando Giannetti
      Abstract: Clarifying the driving mechanisms of spatial and temporal changes in the regulating ecosystem service value (RESV) is an important part of realizing the goal of sustainable development. Existing studies have focused on specific factors, ignoring the complex interactions between factors and their regional differences. In this regard, the spatial and temporal changes of RESV and its driving mechanisms in the different zones (core area, fringe area, and peripheral area) were explored in the Poyang Lake Area, China. The results showed that RESV spatially showed the distribution characteristics of fringe area > core area > peripheral area, while the lakes influenced the provision of regulating ecosystem services, showing that RESV per unit area was higher in the core area, and gradually declined with the increase of distance from the lakes, presenting the decreasing trend of fringe area > peripheral area. From 2000 to 2020, the study area lost 70.5988 billion CNY for RESV, in which the core area was the most affected. Further analysis of the driving mechanism of RESV in different areas found that there are regional differences in the paths of the driving factors: Population density mainly affects the core area, precipitation mainly affects the fringe area, and GDP per land mainly affects the peripheral area.
      PubDate: 2024-02-22T00:00:00Z
       
  • Effects of drought-induced stress on nematode communities in aquatic and
           terrestrial habitats of the Nebraska
           Sandhills|Introduction|Methods|Results and discussion

    • Authors: Kaitlin Gattoni, Eli M. S. Gendron, Kirsten Powers, Thomas O. Powers, Mary J. Harner, Dorota L. Porazinska
      Abstract: IntroductionGlobal change events (e.g., worsening drought) are increasing environmental stress in a variety of terrestrial and aquatic habitats. The degree to which communities in soils and sediments are driven by temporal environmental changes across multiple habitat types from the same region is not clear.MethodsWe used nematodes, a common bioindicator of soil and sediment health, to determine how community diversity and composition are altered by rising alkalinity across lakes, shorelines, and prairies in the western Nebraska Sandhills. We sampled these three habitats from five lake basins spanning an alkalinity gradient (pH 7–11) across three years (2019, 2020, 2021). During our sampling, the Sandhills experienced a range of drought intensities, with 2019 being a wet year, followed by severe drought in 2020, and abnormally dry/moderate drought in 2021. To determine if diversity and composition of nematodes responded to increased alkalinity and drought-induced stress we used different modelling approaches, including Random Forest and pairwise comparisons.Results and discussionOverall, nematode diversity in lakes was most affected by increasing alkalinity over time, whereas in shorelines and prairies diversity was most reliant on bacterial diversity and potential nematode-nematode interactions. In comparison to shorelines and prairies, community composition in lakes was the least variable and consistently driven by pH and lake water levels. In contrast, compositions in the shorelines and prairies were more variable and explained at varying degrees by pH, year, lake basin, and climate-associated variables. In addition, relative abundance and compositional nature of select copious taxa were highly unpredictable, indicating potential instability in these habitats. Future research is necessary to address the ecologic stability of the Sandhills and determine where conservation efforts are most needed.
      PubDate: 2024-02-21T00:00:00Z
       
  • China contributed to low-carbon development: carbon emission increased but
           carbon intensity decreased|Introduction|Methods|Results|Discussion

    • Authors: Chunbo Huang, Xintao Gan, Yunshan Wan, Lin Jin, Jiaxi Teng, Zeyu Li
      Abstract: IntroductionPopulation expansion and economic development increased global greenhouse gas emissions, leading to serious environmental degradation. China, the world's largest developing country and promoter of the “Belt and Road Initiative” (BRI), accounts for 28.8% of the world"s total energy carbon emissions. How to reduce energy consumption to achieve the “double carbon” target (i.e., carbon peaking and carbon neutrality) and promote the implementation of Green BRI is still a serious challenge that China needs to face. MethodsWe evaluated China's carbon emissions using three indicators (i.e., total carbon emission, carbon intensity, and carbon emissions effect), and used spatial analysis to reveal the spatial and temporal trends of China's carbon emissions. In addition, the LMDI model was adopted to explore the driving mechanism of carbon emissions, so as to seek a path that can achieve harmonious economic and environmental development, as well as the “double carbon” target.ResultsChina's total carbon emission increased at a rate of 226.12% from 2000 to 2019, while the carbon intensity decreased at a rate of 48.84%. Carbon emission showed a trend of increasing and then decreasing from southwest to northeast. From 2000 to 2019, the total carbon emission, Gross Domestic Product (GDP), population size and total energy consumption are growing in synergy. Economic and population effects are positively related to carbon emissions, while technology effects are negatively related to it, indicating technological innovations contribute to the reduction of carbon emissions.DiscussionSome suggestions were proposed to control carbon emissions with a view to helping policy makers to formulate relevant policies. The findings provide a scientific basis and reference for the country to achieve the “double carbon” target and the low-carbon sustainable development of BRI.
      PubDate: 2024-02-20T00:00:00Z
       
  • Discriminating the non-coordination between ecosystem service value and
           economic development and its spatial characteristics in central Yunnan
           urban agglomeration in the recent 30 years

    • Authors: Anlin Li, Yehua Yang, Lede Niu, Haichao Luo, Hengxing Chi
      Abstract: Environmental issues have become one of the important topics affecting China and the world. As the world’s most populous country and the second-largest economy, China’s environmental conditions have significant impacts on global ecosystems and sustainable development. To accurately determine the relationship between economic development and the environment, explore the non-coordination and spatial characteristics between the two, and promote regional sustainable development. This study is based on land-use data from four periods: 1990, 2000, 2010, and 2020. It uses the dynamic measurement and value equivalent method to explore the characteristics of land-use changes and measure the value of ecosystem services in the Central Yunnan Urban Agglomeration. At the same time, the study uses the non-coordination degree model and hotspot analysis tools to identify the non-coordination between Ecosystem Service Value and economic development (Gross Domestic Product), and explore the spatial characteristics between them. The research results show that: (1) The main land-use types include cultivated land, forest land, and grassland, which account for more than 90% of the total proportion. The land types with a small proportion in the region are water areas, construction land, and unused land. (2) The development level of ecosystem service value presents four types of changes: fluctuating increase, fluctuating decrease, continuous increase, and continuous decrease. The regional spatial distribution shows obvious regional heterogeneity, overall presenting a spatial distribution pattern of “low in the middle, high around.” (3) The average index of non-coordination degree from 1990 to 2020 is 0.591, 0.635, 0.584, and 0.565, showing a coordinated non-coordination coupling type. The regional space presents a spatial pattern of “high in the central and western regions, low in the northeastern and southern regions.” (4) The hotspots of non-coordination are mainly concentrated in the central and northwest regions of the Central Yunnan Urban Agglomeration, while the coldspots of non-coordination are mainly distributed in the northeastern, western, and southern regions of the Central Yunnan Urban Agglomeration, showing a regular agglomeration distribution. This study suggests that it is necessary to balance and coordinate the relationship between regional economic development and the environment.
      PubDate: 2024-02-20T00:00:00Z
       
  • Neonicotinoid contamination in conservation areas affects bees more
           sharply than beetles

    • Authors: Jonathan Tetlie, Alexandra Harmon-Threatt
      Abstract: The neurotoxic insecticide class of neonicotinoids has become one of the most widely used groups of pesticides globally. Their long half-lives and high water solubility increase their potential to linger and affect numerous organisms long after application. A prominent concern associated with residual contamination is the negative impact that neonicotinoids can have on beneficial arthropods such as bees and certain groups of beetles. Many studies have looked at the effects neonicotinoids have on arthropod communities in lab settings; however, comparatively few studies have looked at these groups in neonicotinoid-contaminated restored prairie habitats. These habitats are often restored from or located near agriculture and are almost ubiquitously contaminated with neonicotinoids. Our one-year manipulated field study compared native bee nesting rates and beetle community assemblages between paired clothianidin-contaminated and non-contaminated restored prairie plots. Native bee nesting probability and nesting abundance increased by 46% and 172%, respectively, in sites contaminated with clothianidin. Conversely, we observed no significant differences in beetle family assemblages, abundance, or richness between clothianidin-contaminated and control sites. These results suggest that neonicotinoid contamination of natural habitats can have numerous environmental consequences for arthropods and that these effects are not always consistent between taxa. Understanding how neonicotinoid contamination affects beneficial groups such as bees and arthropod community assemblages is crucial for characterizing the risks these chemicals pose to ecologically imperative taxa.
      PubDate: 2024-02-19T00:00:00Z
       
  • Intraspecific variation of early Cambrian (stage 3) arthropod Retifacies
           abnormalis revealed by morphometric analyses

    • Authors: Weiliang Lin, Stephen Pates, Sarah R. Losso, Dongjing Fu
      Abstract: Retifacies abnormalis is a large artiopodan euarthropod known only from the famous fossil deposits of the Chengjiang biota, China (Cambrian Series 2, Stage 3). It is well known for its pronounced reticulated ornamentation that covers the entire dorsal surface of the exoskeleton. Here 109 new specimens of R. abnormalis from multiple deposits are reported. Some larger specimens display a distinct carapace ornamentation to what was previously known. By qualitatively separating specimens into two groups (‘Morph A’, ‘Morph B’) and analyzing the shape of the body, pygidium, and shape of the polygons in the reticulation, using linear and geometric morphometrics and elliptical Fourier analysis, the two morphs are shown to overlap in morphospace and display similar length:width ratios of body parts, rather than form two distinct clusters. The differences are interpreted as intraspecific rather than as diagnosing two species. As Morph B are only found in larger size classes, R. abnormalis ornamentation differences are interpreted to have developed during ontogeny, but are not thought to represent sexual dimorphs.
      PubDate: 2024-02-19T00:00:00Z
       
  • Community perspectives of flagship species: can conservation motivators
           mitigate human-wildlife conflict'

    • Authors: Wanyun Xu, Lingxia Xu, Yuqi Cao, Jiaoyang Zheng, Yaling Wang, Kun Cheng, Chun-Hung Lee, Huxuan Dai, Sonamtso Mei, Cheng Zong
      Abstract: Public perception of endangered species is crucial for successful management of community-based conservation and sustainability of national parks. By the method of choice experiment, our study evaluated conservation preferences and willingness to donate money for flagship and non-flagship species using a choice experiment with 409 residents living near the Lanstang river source of Sanjiangyuan National Park, China. We found that flagship species such as the Snow leopard (Pristine plateau) and White-lipped deer (Przewalskium albirostris) generated more conservation funds than non-flagship species. However, not all flagship species were accepted. Respondents disliked Tibetan brown bears (Ursus arctos pruinosus) due to direct human-wildlife conflicts such as bodily injury and property damage. Heterogeneity of preference was influenced by household income, religious beliefs, ethnicity, culture, and conservation awareness. Results can be used to establish a local community-participative framework by combining conservation motivations that alleviate human-wildlife conflict.
      PubDate: 2024-02-19T00:00:00Z
       
  • Delimiting the polymorphic congeners of the genus Oerstedia Quatrefages,
           1864 (Nemertea, Hoplonemertea), and descriptions of three new species from
           the Northwest Pacific

    • Authors: Jamael C. Abato, Alexei V. Chernyshev, Natsumi Hookabe, Aoi Tsuyuki, Gauri Kaushik, Hiroshi Kajihara
      Abstract: Three new species of the monostiliferous hoplonemertean genus Oerstedia Quatrefages, 1864, are herein described using morphological and molecular data—Oerstedia pseudoculata sp. nov., from Akkeshi Bay and Oshoro Bay, Hokkaido, Japan, and from Aniwa Bay, Sakhalin, Russia; Oerstedia rugosa sp. nov. from Sagami Bay, Misaki, Kanagawa, Japan, and Van Phong Bay, Vietnam; and Oerstedia viridifusca sp. nov. from Manazuru, Kanagawa, Japan. As to the external morphology, O. pseudoculata sp. nov. can be differentiated from O. oculata only by its bright-orange ocelli visible on both sides of the head, and a proboscis pore opening at the ventral tip of the head. These two sister species repeat each other’s color patterns, a phenomenon that can be explained by Vavilov’s law of homologous series. Oerstedia rugosa sp. nov. can be identified by its carmine or deep-red to brownish-red body with several longitudinal, intertwined white lines or wrinkles running from the head to the posterior body, and by 17–23 vaguely bordered white bands composed of variedly sized dots encircling the body, arranged at irregular intervals. Oerstedia viridifusca sp. nov. can be distinguished from other Oerstedia by (i) the entire body flecked with minute greenish-brown dots, especially densely on the anterior portion of the dorsal surface, but sparsely on the posterior half of the ventral surface; (ii) a collar-like portion encircling the body along the posterior cephalic furrow where the greenish-brown dots are absent; (iii) the anterolateral edges of the head lacking the greenish-brown dots; and (iv) the ocelli being brownish-orange in color. Oerstedia phoresiae (Kulikova, 1987) is reported for the first time from Japan, in addition to its previous distribution record in Russia and in South Korea. Phylogenetic analyses based on the 16S, 18S, 28S ribosomal RNA, cytochrome c oxidase subunit I, and histone H3 genes show that the new species are true congeners of the genus Oerstedia with O. pseudoculata sp. nov. and O. viridifusca sp. nov. nested within the clade Paroerstediella whereas O. rugosa sp. nov. in the clade Oerstedia. This taxonomic work emphasizes the importance of DNA barcode sequence in the taxonomy and systematics of the polymorphic congeners of the genus Oerstedia.
      PubDate: 2024-02-16T00:00:00Z
       
  • Spatiotemporal evolution characteristics and the driving force of habitat
           quality in the Qinghai–Tibet Plateau in topographic view
           (2000–2020)|Introduction|Methods|Results|Discussion

    • Authors: Haotian Yu, Xuexue Qian, Haichao Jing, Yinghui Liu
      Abstract: IntroductionAs a key indicator to evaluate biodiversity and eco-function, habitat quality shows the value of ecosystem services. The Qinghai–Tibet Plateau occupies the highest elevation in the global dimension, where the regional environment is greatly affected by multiple factors including the terrain comprehensively.MethodsIn the present study, the InVEST model was employed to assess the habitat quality across varying terrain gradients. The study observed the displacement of the center of gravity of habitat quality under different topographical factors over the past 20 years to learn the trend of changes. Additionally, the Geo-detector model was enhanced to explore the contribution rate of driving factors including biodiversity in different topographic positions and overall.ResultsThe results found the following: (1) The habitat quality of the Qinghai–Tibet Plateau was positively correlated with the terrain gradient, and the mean values of habitat quality increased with the gradual increase in terrain gradient. In the period between 2000 and 2020, mean habitat quality values within the study area exhibited a slight fluctuating trend with the spatial distribution characterized by higher values in the southeast and lower values in the northwest. (2) Among different terrain gradients, trends in the mean center’s shift of habitat quality were diverse. The mean center of gradient I went north but gradient V went west. The mean center of the habitat quality in gradients II–IV showed an uncertain trend. (3) The NDVI exerted the most vital influence on the quality of habitats irrespective of different terrain gradients. Annual mean temperature, soil type, and slope occupied two to four places in each terrain.DiscussionThe study indicates that in the last two decades, the habitat quality on the Qinghai–Tibet Plateau has gradually increased across different terrain locations. In terms of policies to protect habitats, terrain should be classified and targeted accordingly.
      PubDate: 2024-02-16T00:00:00Z
       
  • Sustainable development in the context of pandemic: the impact of COVID-19
           pandemic on green investment

    • Authors: Yu He, Lin Fu, Tao Li, Ran Wei
      Abstract: Promoting green investment is the inevitable choice for sustainable economics against climate change. We examine how the COVID-19 pandemic affected corporate green investment. Using a sample of publicly listed firms in China, we document the negative and significant effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on corporate green investment. Further analyses suggest that the COVID-19 pandemic impeded corporate green investment by exacerbating firms’ financial constraints. We also find that the COVID-19 pandemic had no significant effect on total investment, suggesting that the pandemic shock only changed investment structure. In summary, our findings reveal the real effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on green development at the firm level.
      PubDate: 2024-02-16T00:00:00Z
       
  • Decline of a North American rocky intertidal foundation species linked to
           extreme dry, downslope Santa Ana winds

    • Authors: Stephen G. Whitaker, Peter T. Raimondi, Jayson R. Smith, Hunter S. Lenihan, Steven D. Gaines, Robert J. Miller
      Abstract: Foundation species are essential to ecosystem function, but their role as habitat providers is predicated on their spatial dominance. Worldwide, kelps, seagrasses, corals, and other marine foundation species have declined. This is true also for rockweeds, the canopy-forming analog of subtidal kelp forests in temperate rocky intertidal ecosystems. On the west coast of North America, dense beds of the rockweed Silvetia compressa occur across large biogeographic regions, benefitting numerous species by ameliorating physical stress caused by sun exposure, desiccation, heat, and wave disturbance. Like many rockweed species, Silvetia is long-lived, slow-growing, and short-dispersing – characteristics that reduce its resilience to disturbance. Using a generalized additive mixed-effects model with explicit spatial effects, we analyzed canopy cover data from 30 sites spanning 18 years, and we tested the hypothesis that Silvetia population trends are tightly linked to atmospheric climate conditions, particularly Santa Ana wind events (SAWs): strong, hot, and dry downslope winds that originate inland and move offshore. We found that the rockweed had declined markedly, particularly at sites south of the major biogeographic break, Point Conception (PC), including the California Channel Islands and southern California mainland, and a highly significant negative effect of dewpoint depression, a measure of moisture content in the atmosphere, on Silvetia cover across all three regions in this study. Our results suggest that any increases in the frequency or intensity of SAWs are likely to lead to large declines and possible extirpation of Silvetia, as well as the important ecological services the species provides.
      PubDate: 2024-02-15T00:00:00Z
       
  • Non-perennial rivers and streams in extreme hydrological
           conditions—comparing the effectiveness of amplicon sequencing and
           digital microscopy for diatom biodiversity
           appraisal|Introduction|Methods|Results|Discussion

    • Authors: Andrea M. Burfeid-Castellanos, Phillip Mones, Mimoza Dani, Bánk Beszteri
      Abstract: IntroductionNon-perennial rivers and streams are increasingly present, in part because of climate change, even in the temperate climate. However, how the loss of connectivity and complete drying affect microphytobenthos in general and diatom communities in particular has gone mostly unstudied. MethodsWith this paper, we aim to close this gap, identifying diatom biodiversity through manual digital microscopy and rbcL amplicon sequencing, to observe a) which method is better suited to it and b) how the ecotone flow-pool-dry affects diatom diversity under duress. Three karstic, non-perennial rivers and streams with a gradient from natural to anthropogenically disturbed were sampled under flooding conditions and after a long and intense drought in 2022.ResultsOur results show that digital microscopy shows a higher diversity and species richness than amplicon sequencing. We posit that this might be due to a reduced pool of subaerophile taxa having been sequenced and being part of the reference database. Furthermore, the effect of drying only resulted in a reduction in diversity after this drought, although the biofilm was still alive under these conditions. DiscussionTo use amplicon sequencing for non-perennial river diatom diversity monitoring, the reference databases will have to be adapted to such systems, as most rivers may be subjected to drying regularly in the future.
      PubDate: 2024-02-15T00:00:00Z
       
  • Salinity-mediated limitation of asexual reproduction in the colonial
           ascidian Polyandrocarpa zorritensis

    • Authors: Vitoria Tobias-Santos, Rita Andreoni-Pham, Dany El Gharbi, Marie Lebel, Stefano Tiozzo, Alexandre Alié
      Abstract: Ascidians are among the most common invasive marine invertebrates worldwide. Many species of non-indigenous ascidians (NIAs) have successfully colonized the Mediterranean Sea, notably within anthropized coastal lagoons and harbors. Although invasive species are generally characterized by their broad ecological tolerance, different ascidian species exhibit varied responses to biotic and abiotic environmental stressors, including temperature and salinity. Acquiring a better understanding about of the impact of such parameters on ascidian life history is crucial for predicting the invasive potential of NIAs. In this study, we investigated the impact of various salinities on the reproduction of the colonial ascidian Polyandorcarpa zorritensis, a species indigenous to Peru and a thriving invader. P. zorritensis undergoes asexual reproduction via a peculiar form of budding named vasal budding and produces resistant spherules, which likely facilitated its dissemination over long distances. Despite its widespread distribution along the Pacific and Atlantic coasts, it is only found in a few Mediterranean coastal areas with a low salinity. We tested the impact of different salinity conditions on the sexual and asexual reproduction rates of P. zorritensis in a controlled laboratory setting. Our experiments showed that the rate of asexual reproduction in colonies bred at 29 or 36 ppt salinity levels, corresponding to the natural range inhabited by P. zorritensis, was higher than those grown in 40 ppt salinity, commonly found in Mediterranean marinas and harbors. The results suggest that, although P. zorritensis has been present in the Mediterranean for several decades, its potential for invasion could be constrained by an intolerance to high salinity.
      PubDate: 2024-02-15T00:00:00Z
       
  • Corrigendum: Spatio-temporal variation and prediction of ecological
           quality based on remote sensing ecological index a case study of Zhanjiang
           City, China

    • Authors: Jing Wang, Jia Wang, Jiangqi Xu
      PubDate: 2024-02-14T00:00:00Z
       
 
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