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Diversity, Volume 13, Issue 10 (October 2021) – 51 articles

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Article
Overlooked Species Diversity and Distribution in the Antarctic Mite Genus Stereotydeus
by , , , , and
Diversity 2021, 13(10), 506; https://doi.org/10.3390/d13100506 (registering DOI) - 19 Oct 2021
Abstract
In the harsh Antarctic terrestrial ecosystems, invertebrates are currently confined to sparse and restricted ice free areas, where they have survived on multi-million-year timescales in refugia. The limited dispersal abilities of these invertebrate species, their specific habitat requirements, and the presence of geographical [...] Read more.
In the harsh Antarctic terrestrial ecosystems, invertebrates are currently confined to sparse and restricted ice free areas, where they have survived on multi-million-year timescales in refugia. The limited dispersal abilities of these invertebrate species, their specific habitat requirements, and the presence of geographical barriers can drastically reduce gene flow between populations, resulting in high genetic differentiation. On continental Antarctica, mites are one of the most diverse invertebrate groups. Recently, two new species of the free living prostigmatid mite genus Stereotydeus Berlese, 1901 were discovered, bringing the number of Antarctic and sub-Antarctic species of this genus up to 15, of which 7 occur along the coast of Victoria Land and in the Transantarctic Mountains. To examine the biodiversity of Stereotydeus spp., the present study combines phylogenetic, morphological and population genetic data of specimens collected from nine localities in Victoria Land. Genetically distinct intraspecific groups are spatially isolated in northern Victoria Land, while, for other species, the genetic haplogroups more often occur sympatrically in southern Victoria Land. We provide a new distribution map for the Stereotydeus species of Victoria Land, which will assist future decisions in matters of the protection and conservation of the unique Antarctic terrestrial fauna. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue 2021 Feature Papers by Diversity’s Editorial Board Members)
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Article
The Trade-offs and Synergistic Relationships between Grassland Ecosystem Functions in the Yellow River Basin
by , and
Diversity 2021, 13(10), 505; https://doi.org/10.3390/d13100505 - 19 Oct 2021
Abstract
Grassland is the most important land use/cover type in the Yellow River basin. Studying its ecosystem services and the trade-off and synergistic relationships between its various functions is of great significance to high-quality development and the protection of the ecological environment in the [...] Read more.
Grassland is the most important land use/cover type in the Yellow River basin. Studying its ecosystem services and the trade-off and synergistic relationships between its various functions is of great significance to high-quality development and the protection of the ecological environment in the Yellow River basin. This paper evaluates the five typical functions of grassland in the Yellow River basin quantitatively, including water yield, carbon storage, soil conservation, habitat quality, and NPP by adopting the InVEST model and the CASA model. It analyzes changes in the trade-offs and the synergistic relationships between the five ecosystem functions from 1990 to 2018 by adopting the correlation coefficient method. The paper also analyzes and explores the spatial heterogeneity of the trade-offs and synergistic relationships by adopting the bivariate spatial autocorrelation method. The results show that from 1990 to 2018, the average water yield depth, carbon storage, and NPP of the grassland in the Yellow River basin tended to increase; soil conservation and habitat quality showed a decreasing trend; and the spatial distribution of the five functions were clearly in line with zonal law. The five ecological functions were synergistic; the synergistic relationship between water yield and the other functions was relatively weak, and there was a strong synergistic relationship between the other four functions. The trade-offs and synergistic relationships between the five functions demonstrated significant spatial heterogeneity in space. This research provides a scientific basis for determining the optimal utilization and sustainable development of grassland resources. Full article
Article
Is a High Abundance of Spring Diatoms in the Photic Zone of Lake Baikal in July 2019 Due to an Upwelling Event?
by , , , , , , , , , , and
Diversity 2021, 13(10), 504; https://doi.org/10.3390/d13100504 - 19 Oct 2021
Abstract
A high abundance of planktonic microalgae is typically thought to be related to their ‘bloom’, that is, to active population growth. Diatom blooms in the photic zone of Lake Baikal generally occur during hydrological spring (April–June); when the summer arrives and the surface [...] Read more.
A high abundance of planktonic microalgae is typically thought to be related to their ‘bloom’, that is, to active population growth. Diatom blooms in the photic zone of Lake Baikal generally occur during hydrological spring (April–June); when the summer arrives and the surface water temperature increases, diatoms are replaced by other microalgae. In July 2019, we found a concentration of the diatom Fragilaria radians at a station in South Baikal that was extremely high for that season. This species generally blooms in spring, but in spring (May) of 2019, this alga was nearly absent from the phytoplankton population. Microscopic analysis of the sample taken in July 2019 revealed that the cells were in a dormant stage. The species composition of microalgae in phytoplankton samples from May 2018 and July 2019 was similar. According to the temperature profile analysis, a summer upwelling event from a depth of ca. 100 m occurred in 2019. We hypothesised that this event caused the resuspension of microalgae, including Fragilaria radians, which were deposited on the slopes of the lake in 2018. Hence, the high abundance is not always a ‘bloom’ or an active growth. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Diatom Diversity in the Lakes)
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Article
The Hidden Wood-Decaying Fungal Diversity: Rhizochaete from East Asia
Diversity 2021, 13(10), 503; https://doi.org/10.3390/d13100503 - 17 Oct 2021
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Abstract
Wood-decaying fungi play crucial roles as decomposers in forest ecosystems. In this study, two new corticioid fungi, Rhizochaete fissurata and R. grandinosa spp. nov., are proposed based on a combination of morphological features and molecular evidence. Rhizochaete fissurata is characterized by resupinate basidiomata [...] Read more.
Wood-decaying fungi play crucial roles as decomposers in forest ecosystems. In this study, two new corticioid fungi, Rhizochaete fissurata and R. grandinosa spp. nov., are proposed based on a combination of morphological features and molecular evidence. Rhizochaete fissurata is characterized by resupinate basidiomata with a cracking hymenial surface, a monomitic hyphal system with simple-septa generative hyphae, presence of subfusiform to conical cystidia encrusted at the apex or coarse on the upper half, and ellipsoid basidiospores. Rhizochaete grandinosa differs in its resupinate basidiomata with a smooth hymenial surface, presence of two types of cystidia, and ellipsoid basidiospores. Sequences of ITS and nLSU rRNA markers of the studied samples were employed, and phylogenetic analyses were performed with maximum likelihood, maximum parsimony, and Bayesian inference methods on two datasets (ITS+nLSU and ITS). Both dataset analyses showed that two new species clustered into the genus Rhizochaete, in which, based on the ITS+nLSU dataset, R. fissurata was sister to R. belizensis, and R. grandinosa grouped with R. radicata; the phylogram inferred from ITS sequences inside Rhizochaete indicated that R. fissurata formed a monophyletic lineage with a lower support; R. grandinosa grouped closely with R. radicata. In addition, an identification key to all Rhizochaete species worldwide is provided. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Hidden Fungal Diversity in Asia)
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Article
Species Diversity and Community Assembly of Cladocera in the Sand Ponds of the Ulan Buh Desert, Inner Mongolia of China
Diversity 2021, 13(10), 502; https://doi.org/10.3390/d13100502 - 17 Oct 2021
Viewed by 276
Abstract
In deserts, pond cladocerans suffer harsh conditions like low and erratic rainfall, high evaporation, and highly variable salinity, and they have limited species richness. The limited species can take advantage of ephippia or resting eggs for being dispersed with winds in such habitats. [...] Read more.
In deserts, pond cladocerans suffer harsh conditions like low and erratic rainfall, high evaporation, and highly variable salinity, and they have limited species richness. The limited species can take advantage of ephippia or resting eggs for being dispersed with winds in such habitats. Thus, environmental selection is assumed to play a major role in community assembly, especially at a fine spatial scale. Located in Inner Mongolia, the Ulan Buh desert has plenty of temporary water bodies and a few permanent lakes filled by groundwater. To determine species diversity and the role of environmental selection in community assembly in such a harsh environment, we sampled 37 sand ponds in June 2012. Fourteen species of Cladocera were found in total, including six pelagic species, eight littoral species, and two benthic species. These cladocerans were mainly temperate and cosmopolitan fauna. Our classification and regression tree model showed that conductivity, dissolved oxygen, and pH were the main factors correlated with species richness in the sand ponds. Spatial analysis using a PCNM model demonstrated a broad-scale spatial structure in the cladoceran communities. Conductivity was the most significant environmental variable explaining cladoceran community variation. Two species, Moina cf. brachiata and Ceriodaphnia reticulata occurred commonly, with an overlap at intermediate conductivity. Our results, therefore, support that environmental selection plays a major role in structuring cladoceran communities in deserts. Full article
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Article
Genome-Wide SNP Analysis of Male and Female Rice Field Frogs, Hoplobatrachus rugulosus, Supports a Non-Genetic Sex Determination System
Diversity 2021, 13(10), 501; https://doi.org/10.3390/d13100501 (registering DOI) - 16 Oct 2021
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Abstract
Sex determination systems (SDSs) in anurans are diverse and have undergone independent evolutionary transitions among species. The mode of sexual reproduction of the rice field frog (Hoplobatrachus rugulosus)—an economically viable, edible amphibian species—is not well known. Previous studies have proposed that [...] Read more.
Sex determination systems (SDSs) in anurans are diverse and have undergone independent evolutionary transitions among species. The mode of sexual reproduction of the rice field frog (Hoplobatrachus rugulosus)—an economically viable, edible amphibian species—is not well known. Previous studies have proposed that threshold temperature conditions may determine sex in these frogs. To elucidate the SDS in H. rugulosus, we karyotyped 10 male and 12 female frogs, and performed fluorescence in situ hybridization combined with sequencing analyses using DArTseq™. Our results revealed a highly conserved karyotype with no sex chromosome heteromorphism, and the sequencing analyses did not identify any consistent sex-linked loci, supporting the hypothesis of temperature-dependent sex determination. The results of this study, and others, on SDSs in the rice field frog and related species also provide support for the theory that heteromorphic sex chromosomes may lead to an evolutionary trap that prevents variable SDSs. These findings add important information to the body of knowledge on H. rugulosus and are likely to have a significant impact on the productivity and economic success of rice field frog farming. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Animal Diversity)
Article
Comparison of Gut Microbiota between Gentoo and Adélie Penguins Breeding Sympatrically on Antarctic Ardley Island as Revealed by Fecal DNA Sequencing
Diversity 2021, 13(10), 500; https://doi.org/10.3390/d13100500 - 15 Oct 2021
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Abstract
There are two pygoscelid penguins, the Gentoo (Pygoscelis papua Forster, 1781) and Adélie (P. adeliae Hombron and Jacquinot, 1841) penguins, breeding sympatrically on Ardley Island, Fildes Peninsula region, South Shetlands, Antarctica. Whether the two closely related penguin species with similar dietary [...] Read more.
There are two pygoscelid penguins, the Gentoo (Pygoscelis papua Forster, 1781) and Adélie (P. adeliae Hombron and Jacquinot, 1841) penguins, breeding sympatrically on Ardley Island, Fildes Peninsula region, South Shetlands, Antarctica. Whether the two closely related penguin species with similar dietary habits possess compositional similarity in gut microbiota remains unknown. DNA barcoding of feces is an emerging approach for gut microbiota analysis of protected animals. In the present study, the 16S rRNA gene from penguin feces was sequenced using the Illumina MiSeq platform to investigate the gut microbiota of the two pygoscelid penguin species. The fecal community of Gentoo penguins has higher diversity indices and OTU (operational taxonomic unit) richness compared to Adélie penguins. Besides unclassified bacteria, sequences fell into 22 major lineages of the domain Bacteria: Acidobacteria, Actinobacteria, Armatimonadetes, Bacteroidetes, Chlamydiae, Chloroflexi, Cloacimonetes, Cyanobacteria, Deinococcus-Thermus, Fibrobacteres, Firmicutes, Fusobacteria, Gemmatimonadetes, Ignavibacteriae, Planctomycetes, Proteobacteria, Tenericutes, Verrucomicrobia, and candidate divisions BRC1, SR1, WPS-2, and Saccharibacteria. Among these, Firmicutes (37.7%), Proteobacteria (23.1%, mainly Gamma- and Betaproteobacteria), Fusobacteria (14.3%), Bacteroidetes (7.9%), and Actinobacteria (6.6%) were dominant in the fecal microbiota of the two penguin species. At the same time, significantly higher abundances of Actinobacteria and Cyanobacteria were detected in Gentoo penguins than in Adélie penguins (p < 0.05). Overall, there was a clear difference in the composition of gut microbiota between the Adélie and Gentoo penguins. The results suggested that both the phylogeny of penguin species and the diet could be responsible for the differences in the gut microbiota of the two pygoscelid penguins breeding in the same area. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Microbial Diversity and Culture Collections)
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Article
The Natural Capital Value of the Seagrass Posidonia oceanica in the North-Western Mediterranean
Diversity 2021, 13(10), 499; https://doi.org/10.3390/d13100499 - 15 Oct 2021
Viewed by 32
Abstract
Posidonia oceanica is an endemic Mediterranean seagrass used as a ‘biological quality element’ in monitoring programmes of the EU Water Framework Directive, providing information about coastal ecosystems status. The regression of P. oceanica meadows caused a growing interest among policy makers to assess [...] Read more.
Posidonia oceanica is an endemic Mediterranean seagrass used as a ‘biological quality element’ in monitoring programmes of the EU Water Framework Directive, providing information about coastal ecosystems status. The regression of P. oceanica meadows caused a growing interest among policy makers to assess the value of seagrasses and to increase their protection. An evaluation of P. oceanica meadows located in the Ligurian-Provençal basin (NW Mediterranean) through a biophysical approach is here developed. Six meadows located in Liguria (Italy) and Corsica (France) were investigated by applying the emergy analysis to assess the natural capital (NC) stocked by leaves and rhizomes components. Results highlighted the importance of carrying out an analysis of the variations in the NC value in both components: rhizomes defined the growth stage and the capacity to store NC over time; leaves provided information on the variability due to disturbances in the water column. Emergy analysis allows defining the NC, in terms of resources needed to maintain the meadows and to provide services to coastal communities. This research is inserted into the effort of incorporating the NC evaluation into marine planning and decision making to achieve nature conservation goals, while ensuring the sustainable exploitation of marine resources. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biodiversity Conservation in Mediterranean Sea)
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Article
Recent Invaders in Small Mediterranean Islands: Wild Boars Impact Snakes in Port-Cros National Park
Diversity 2021, 13(10), 498; https://doi.org/10.3390/d13100498 - 15 Oct 2021
Viewed by 92
Abstract
Mediterranean islands host unique ecosystems that are particularly vulnerable to invasive species. However, knowledge regarding the precise impact of invasive species on local biodiversity remains limited for many of these systems. Here we report on the negative impacts of invasive wild boars ( [...] Read more.
Mediterranean islands host unique ecosystems that are particularly vulnerable to invasive species. However, knowledge regarding the precise impact of invasive species on local biodiversity remains limited for many of these systems. Here we report on the negative impacts of invasive wild boars (Sus scrofa) on native snakes on islands in the Mediterranean basin. Capture-mark-recapture was initiated in 2012 on two snake species (Montpellier snake, Malpolon monspessulanus and Ladder snake, Zamenis scalaris) across two islands of Port-Cros National Park. Several wild boars, an invasive species, reached the islands in 2007. They remained confined to small areas of the islands for several years. In Port-Cros, the numbers of wild boars suddenly increased in 2015, and rapidly colonized the whole island damaging vast land surfaces. In Porquerolles, wild boars did not proliferate. This offered an opportunity to examine the impact of wild boar outbreak with a Before-After Control-Impact design (BACI). Snake counts and mark-recapture modeling showed that demographic traits were stable before 2016 for both snake species on both islands. As well as abundance, recruitment, and population growth rate of Montpellier snakes significantly declined where wild boars proliferated but remained constant on the island where they did not. Wild boars probably impacted snake numbers through habitat destruction and direct killing. The rapid decline of snakes (apex predators) and intensive uprooting that strongly damage ground dwelling species (plants, animals) suggest that wild boars represent a serious threat to island biodiversity. As elsewhere around the world, these invasive ungulates proliferate in the Mediterranean basin, they are proficient swimmers and exhibit a remarkably high invasive potential. We recommend vigilance and fast eradication to prevent population outburst; even a few a localized non-proliferating individuals contain the latent potential for devastating outbreaks. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Reptile Community Ecology and Conservation)
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Article
HPV16-Genotyper: A Computational Tool for Risk-Assessment, Lineage Genotyping and Recombination Detection in HPV16 Sequences, Based on a Large-Scale Evolutionary Analysis
Diversity 2021, 13(10), 497; https://doi.org/10.3390/d13100497 - 14 Oct 2021
Viewed by 169
Abstract
Previous analyses have identified certain but limited evidence of recombination among HPV16 genomes, in accordance with a general perception that DNA viruses do not frequently recombine. In this evolutionary/bioinformatics study we have analyzed more than 3600 publicly available complete and partial HPV16 genomes. [...] Read more.
Previous analyses have identified certain but limited evidence of recombination among HPV16 genomes, in accordance with a general perception that DNA viruses do not frequently recombine. In this evolutionary/bioinformatics study we have analyzed more than 3600 publicly available complete and partial HPV16 genomes. By studying the phylogenetic incongruence, similarity plots and the distribution patterns of lineage-specific SNPs, we identify several potential recombination events between the two major HPV16 evolutionary clades. These two clades comprise the (widely considered) phenotypically more benign (lower risk) lineage A and the (widely considered) phenotypically more aggressive (higher risk) non-European lineages B, C and D. We observe a frequency of potential recombinant sequences ranging between 0.3 and 1.2% which is low, but nevertheless considerable. Our findings have clinical implications and highlight that HPV16 genotyping and risk assessment based only on certain genomic regions and not the entire genome may provide a false genotype and, therefore, its associated risk estimate. Finally, based on this analysis, we have developed a bioinformatics tool that automates the entire process of HPV16 lineage genotyping, recombination detection and further identifies, within the submitted sequences, SNPs that have been reported in the literature to increase the risk of cancer. Full article
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Article
Haplogroup Distribution of 309 Thais from Admixed Populations across the Country by HVI and HVII Sanger-Type Sequencing
Diversity 2021, 13(10), 496; https://doi.org/10.3390/d13100496 - 14 Oct 2021
Viewed by 199
Abstract
The mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) control region sequences for the hypervariable regions I (HVI) and II (HVII) of 309 Thai citizens were investigated using Sanger-type sequencing to generate an mtDNA reference dataset for forensic casework, and the haplogroup distribution within geographically proximal Asian populations [...] Read more.
The mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) control region sequences for the hypervariable regions I (HVI) and II (HVII) of 309 Thai citizens were investigated using Sanger-type sequencing to generate an mtDNA reference dataset for forensic casework, and the haplogroup distribution within geographically proximal Asian populations was analyzed. The population sample set contained 264 distinct haplotypes and showed high haplotype diversity, low matching probability, and high powers of discrimination, at 0.9985, 0.4744%, and 0.9953, respectively, compared with previous reports. Subhaplogroup F1a showed the highest frequency in the Thai population, similar to Southeast Asian populations. The haplotype frequencies in the northern, northeastern, and southern populations of Thailand illustrate the relevance of social, religious, and historical factors in the biogeographical origin of the admixed Thai population as a whole. The HVI and HVII reference datasets will be useful for forensic casework applications, with improved genetic information content and discriminatory power compared to currently available techniques. Full article
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Article
Experimental Evaluation of δ2H, δ13C and δ15N Variability in Blood and Feathers of Wild and Captive Birds: Implications for Interspecific Food Web Studies
Diversity 2021, 13(10), 495; https://doi.org/10.3390/d13100495 - 14 Oct 2021
Viewed by 113
Abstract
Stable-hydrogen (δ2H), nitrogen (δ15N), and carbon (δ13C) isotopes are used to decipher broad movement patterns and trophic relationships among diverse species, and an improved understanding of factors controlling natural variation in tissue-isotope measurements will [...] Read more.
Stable-hydrogen (δ2H), nitrogen (δ15N), and carbon (δ13C) isotopes are used to decipher broad movement patterns and trophic relationships among diverse species, and an improved understanding of factors controlling natural variation in tissue-isotope measurements will enhance these applications. To evaluate the rearing environment and family-related effects on the isotopic composition of tissues, we cross-fostered nestling tree swallows (Tachycineta bicolor, Vieillot 1808) and American kestrels (Falco sparverius, Linnaeus 1758) by swapping recently hatched birds (<4 days old) among nest boxes and collecting blood and feathers prior to fledging. To assess developmental effects, we measured δ2H in blood and feathers of captive mallard (Anas platyrhynchos, Linnaeus 1758) ducklings challenged energetically during growth. Stable isotope composition was not strongly related to nest box type or natal nest (i.e., family of origin) effects in swallows and kestrels; tissue-isotope composition was related to rearing environment, indicative of differences in nest and parental quality or parental provisioning tactics. Blood and feather δ2H values in swallows were positively related to antecedent maximum ambient temperature, and unrelated to elevated energy expenditure in mallards. The average differences between δ2H in blood and feathers were similar for nestling swallows (27‰, 32‰; two sites) and mallards (26‰, 30‰; two age groups), and lower than in nestling kestrels (50‰). Strong species-specific patterns in blood-feather differences were not observed for δ15N and δ13C in swallows or kestrels; divergent δ2H results may be related to differences in nest ambient conditions, diet composition, or physiological processes affecting hydrogen assimilation during growth and feather synthesis. In swallows, tissue-isotope values reflected parental prey selection from spatially distinct food webs during nestling development with little effect(s) of family of origin, egg composition, or early growth. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Stable Isotope Ecology)
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Article
16S rRNA Gene Amplicon Sequencing Data of the Iron Quadrangle Ferruginous Caves (Brazil) Shows the Importance of Conserving This Singular and Threatened Geosystem
Diversity 2021, 13(10), 494; https://doi.org/10.3390/d13100494 - 11 Oct 2021
Viewed by 336
Abstract
The Iron Quadrangle (IQ) is one of the main iron ore producing regions of the world. The exploitation of its reserves jeopardizes the high biological endemism associated with this region. This work aimed to understand the diversity and bacterial potential associated with IQ [...] Read more.
The Iron Quadrangle (IQ) is one of the main iron ore producing regions of the world. The exploitation of its reserves jeopardizes the high biological endemism associated with this region. This work aimed to understand the diversity and bacterial potential associated with IQ caves. Floor and ceiling samples of seven ferruginous caves and one quartzite cave were collected, and their microbial relative abundance and diversity were established by 16S rRNA gene amplicon sequencing data. The results showed that ferruginous caves present higher microbial abundance and greater microbial diversity compared to the quartzite cave. Many species belonging to genera found in these caves, such as Pseudonocardia and Streptacidiphilus, are known to produce biomolecules of biotechnological interest as macrolides and polyketides. Moreover, comparative analysis of microbial diversity and metabolic potential in a biofilm in pendant microfeature revealed that the microbiota associated with this structure is more similar to the floor rather than ceiling samples, with the presence of genera that may participate in the genesis of these cavities, for instance, Ferrovum, Geobacter, and Sideroxydans. These results provide the first glimpse of the microbial life in these environments and emphasize the need of conservation programs for these areas, which are under intense anthropogenic exploration. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biodiversity in Karst Landscapes)
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Article
Bird Functional Diversity in Agroecosystems and Secondary Forests of the Tropical Andes
Diversity 2021, 13(10), 493; https://doi.org/10.3390/d13100493 - 09 Oct 2021
Viewed by 386
Abstract
Agricultural systems have increased in extension and intensity worldwide, altering vertebrate functional diversity, ecosystem functioning, and ecosystemic services. However, the effects of open monoculture crops on bird functional diversity remain little explored, particularly in highly biodiverse regions such as the tropical Andes. We [...] Read more.
Agricultural systems have increased in extension and intensity worldwide, altering vertebrate functional diversity, ecosystem functioning, and ecosystemic services. However, the effects of open monoculture crops on bird functional diversity remain little explored, particularly in highly biodiverse regions such as the tropical Andes. We aim to assess the functional diversity differences of bird guilds between monoculture crops (coffee, cocoa, and citrus) and secondary forests. We use four functional diversity indices (Rao Q, Functional Richness, Functional Evenness, and Functional Divergence) related to relevant morphological, life history, and behavioral traits. We find significant differences in functional diversity between agroecosystem and forest habitats. Particularly, bird functional diversity is quite homogeneous among crop types. Functional traits related to locomotion (body weight, wing-chord length, and tail length), nest type (closed), and foraging strata (canopy and understory) are dominant at the agroecosystems. The bird assemblages found at the agroecosystems are more homogeneous in terms of functional diversity than those found at the secondary forests, as a result of crop structure and management. We recommend promoting more diverse agroecosystems to enhance bird functional diversity and reduce their effects on biodiversity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biodiversity in Productive Systems: A Latin American Perspective)
Article
Importance of Local Studies of Vascular Plant Communities in Conservation and Management: A Case Study in Susticacán, Zacatecas, Mexico
Diversity 2021, 13(10), 492; https://doi.org/10.3390/d13100492 - 09 Oct 2021
Viewed by 270
Abstract
Some parts of the globe have a deficient vegetation coverage survey causing localized plant community qualities generalized from larger scales, hindering their particular configuration. This process is emphasized in megadiverse countries such as Mexico by transformation and loss of land cover. This can [...] Read more.
Some parts of the globe have a deficient vegetation coverage survey causing localized plant community qualities generalized from larger scales, hindering their particular configuration. This process is emphasized in megadiverse countries such as Mexico by transformation and loss of land cover. This can be reflected in the municipality of Susticacán, Zacatecas, settled in a mountainous, scarcely explored area, the Sierra de los Cardos. This study aimed to characterize its plant communities, produce a fine-scale map and compare them to other descriptions. Oak forests, pine forests, grasslands, nopaleras, chaparral, and rock outcrop vegetation were detected through satellite image analysis, sampled, statistically evaluated, and their descriptions supported by the literature. The first two presented a high diversity and endemism, despite a small surface. The chaparral occupied the largest area, and its structure and composition suggest its secondary vegetation in expansion. The presence of exotic–invasive species and human activities threaten the native flora. This study is the first to provide detailed information on the plant communities in Susticacán and is a model for the study of local-scale regions. It highlights the importance of describing and mapping them as a contribution to delineate conservation and management efforts. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biodiversity and Conservation of Vascular Flora)
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Factors Influencing Colonization and Survival of Juvenile Blue Crabs Callinectes sapidus in Southeastern U.S. Tidal Creeks
Diversity 2021, 13(10), 491; https://doi.org/10.3390/d13100491 - 07 Oct 2021
Viewed by 291
Abstract
Tidal creeks along the southeastern U.S. and Gulf of Mexico coastlines provide nursery habitats for commercially and ecologically important nekton, including juvenile blue crabs Callinectes sapidus, a valuable and heavily landed seafood species. Instream and watershed urbanization may influence the habitat value [...] Read more.
Tidal creeks along the southeastern U.S. and Gulf of Mexico coastlines provide nursery habitats for commercially and ecologically important nekton, including juvenile blue crabs Callinectes sapidus, a valuable and heavily landed seafood species. Instream and watershed urbanization may influence the habitat value that tidal creeks provide to blue crabs. We investigated natural and anthropogenic factors influencing juvenile blue crab occupancy dynamics in eight first-order tidal creeks in coastal North Carolina (USA). An auto-logistic hierarchical multi-season (dynamic) occupancy model with separate ecological and observation sub-models was fitted to juvenile blue crab presence/absence data collected over replicate sampling visits in multiple seasons at three fixed trapping sites in each creek. Colonization and survival are the processes operating on occupancy that are estimated with this formulation of the model. Covariates considered in the ecological sub-model included watershed imperviousness, the percent of salt marsh in each creek’s high tide area, percent salt marsh edge, site-level water depth, and site-level salinity. Temperature, salinity, and dissolved oxygen were covariates considered in the observation sub-model. In the ecological sub-model, watershed imperviousness was a meaningful negative covariate and site-level salinity was a positive covariate of survival probability. Imperviousness and salinity were each marginally meaningful on colonization probability. Water temperature was a positive covariate of detection probability in the observation sub-model. Mean estimated detection probability across all sites and seasons of the study was 0.186. The results suggest that development in tidal creek watersheds will impact occupancy dynamics of juvenile blue crabs. This places an emphasis on minimizing losses of natural land cover classes in tidal creek watersheds to reduce the negative impacts to populations of this important species. Future research should explore the relationship between imperviousness and salinity fluctuations in tidal creeks to better understand how changing land cover influences water chemistry and ultimately the demographics of juvenile blue crabs. Full article
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Estimated Density, Population Size and Distribution of the Endangered Western Hoolock Gibbon (Hoolock hoolock) in Forest Remnants in Bangladesh
Diversity 2021, 13(10), 490; https://doi.org/10.3390/d13100490 - 06 Oct 2021
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Abstract
Tropical forests are threatened worldwide due to deforestation. In South and Southeast Asia, gibbons (Hylobatidae) are important to seed dispersal and forest regeneration. Most gibbons are threatened due to deforestation. We studied the western hoolock gibbon (Hoolock hoolock) in Bangladesh to [...] Read more.
Tropical forests are threatened worldwide due to deforestation. In South and Southeast Asia, gibbons (Hylobatidae) are important to seed dispersal and forest regeneration. Most gibbons are threatened due to deforestation. We studied the western hoolock gibbon (Hoolock hoolock) in Bangladesh to determine population size and extent of suitable habitat. We used distance sampling to estimate density across 22 sites in northeastern and southeastern Bangladesh. We used Maxent modeling to determine areas of highly suitable habitat throughout Bangladesh. Density was estimated to be 0.39 ± 0.09groups/km2, and the total estimated population was 468.96 ± 45.56 individuals in 135.31 ± 2.23 groups. The Maxent model accurately predicted gibbon distribution. Vegetation cover, isothermality, annual precipitation, elevation and mean temperature of the warmest quarter influenced distribution. Two areas in the northeast and two areas in the southeast have high potential for gibbon conservation in Bangladesh. We also found significantly more gibbons in areas that had some level of official protection. Thus, we suggest careful evaluation, comprehensive surveys and restoration of habitats identified as suitable for gibbons. We recommend bringing specific sites in the northeastern and southeastern regions under protection to secure habitat for remaining gibbon populations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Biodiversity Conservation)
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Article
N90, a Diversity Index Sensitive to Variations in Beta Diversity Components
Diversity 2021, 13(10), 489; https://doi.org/10.3390/d13100489 - 06 Oct 2021
Viewed by 874
Abstract
Species diversity in a community is mainly related to the number and abundance of species that form it. N90 is a recently developed diversity index based on the results of the similarity percentage (SIMPER) analysis that represents the number of species contributing [...] Read more.
Species diversity in a community is mainly related to the number and abundance of species that form it. N90 is a recently developed diversity index based on the results of the similarity percentage (SIMPER) analysis that represents the number of species contributing up to ninety percent of within-group similarity in a group of samples. The calculation of N90 is based on the Bray–Curtis similarity index and involves the number of species and abundances in a group of samples. We have explored the properties of N90 compared to other alpha, beta and gamma diversity indices and to beta diversity measures accounting for nestedness and turnover. We have used a non-real data set to compare the values of all indices with N90 and two real data sets of demersal fish communities along large and short depth gradients with higher influence of turnover and nestedness, respectively, to correlate the same indices with N90. The sensitivity of N90 to reductions in the frequency of occurrence and the evenness of the distribution of species abundances among samples allows the detection of diversity loss due to the fishing-induced retreatment of species populations to localities presenting the most favorable ecological conditions. This property, both in the identification of species replacement and species loss through SIMPER analysis, make N90 a useful indicator to support the Ecosystem Approach to Fisheries within the current context of global change. Full article
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Article
Discovery of Three Novel Cytospora Species in Thailand and Their Antagonistic Potential
Diversity 2021, 13(10), 488; https://doi.org/10.3390/d13100488 - 06 Oct 2021
Viewed by 332
Abstract
During an ongoing research survey of saprobic fungi in Thailand, four coelomycetous strains were isolated from decaying leaves in Chiang Mai and Phitsanulok Provinces. Morphological characteristics demonstrated that these taxa are typical of Cytospora in forming multi-loculate, entostromatic conidiomata, branched or unbranched conidiophores, [...] Read more.
During an ongoing research survey of saprobic fungi in Thailand, four coelomycetous strains were isolated from decaying leaves in Chiang Mai and Phitsanulok Provinces. Morphological characteristics demonstrated that these taxa are typical of Cytospora in forming multi-loculate, entostromatic conidiomata, branched or unbranched conidiophores, with enteroblastic, phialidic conidiogenous cells and hyaline, allantoid, aseptate conidia. Multiloci phylogeny of ITS, LSU, ACT, RPB2, TEF1-α and TUB2 confirmed these taxa are distinct new species in Cytospora in Cytosporaceae (Diaporthales, Sordariomycetes), viz., Cytospora chiangmaiensis, C. phitsanulokensis and C. shoreae. Cytospora chiangmaiensis has a close phylogenetic relationship with C. shoreae, while C. phitsanulokensis is sister to C. acaciae. These three novel species were also preliminary screened for their antagonistic activity against five plant pathogenic fungi: Colletotrichumfructicola, Co. siamense, Co. artocarpicola, Co. viniferum and Fusarium sambucinum. Cytospora shoreae and C. phitsanulokensis showed >60% inhibition against Co. viniferum and F. sambucinum, while C. chiangmaiensis had moderate inhibition activity against all pathogens. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Hidden Fungal Diversity in Asia)
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Editorial
An Overview of Subterranean Biodiversity Hotspots
Diversity 2021, 13(10), 487; https://doi.org/10.3390/d13100487 - 06 Oct 2021
Viewed by 285
Abstract
Riding a wave of interest in biodiversity patterns in surface-dwelling communities, in 2000, Culver and Sket [...] Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Hotspots of Subterranean Biodiversity)
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Article
Spatial Patterns of Coral Community Structure in the Toliara Region of Southwest Madagascar and Implications for Conservation and Management
Diversity 2021, 13(10), 486; https://doi.org/10.3390/d13100486 - 05 Oct 2021
Viewed by 422
Abstract
The Great Reef of Toliara, on the southwestern coast of Madagascar, has been documented as harbouring flourishing reef communities in the 1960s, but has since been affected by various threats, causing a coral decline last reported in 2008. In 2017, we examined the [...] Read more.
The Great Reef of Toliara, on the southwestern coast of Madagascar, has been documented as harbouring flourishing reef communities in the 1960s, but has since been affected by various threats, causing a coral decline last reported in 2008. In 2017, we examined the spatial heterogeneity in coral community structure in the region of Toliara. Coral assemblages were characterized by a marked spatial variability, with significant variation for most of the descriptors among the three major habitats and also among stations within habitats. We recorded high coral cover, with values >40% at six of the 10 stations, which was associated with high abundance of coral colonies. We also documented the return to an Acropora-dominated coral assemblage. While these positive results suggest a recent return to healthier coral assemblages, they must be tempered, as the diversity that we recorded was lower than in the 1960s. Moreover, we found a high cover of algae at several stations, suggesting that the ecosystem is likely close to the tipping point toward a phase shift. Finally, the population size-structure of major coral taxa was positively skewed, with few large colonies to ensure the replenishment of local populations. The marked spatial variation suggests that marine protected areas should integrate a sufficiently large area to capture the scale of this spatial heterogeneity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Coral Reef Ecology and Biodiversity)
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Article
Diversity and Distribution of Mid- to Late-Stage Phyllosomata of Spiny and Slipper Lobsters (Decapoda: Achelata) in the Mexican Caribbean
Diversity 2021, 13(10), 485; https://doi.org/10.3390/d13100485 - 05 Oct 2021
Viewed by 344
Abstract
Achelata (Palinuridae and Scyllaridae) have a flat, transparent, long-lived planktonic larva called phyllosoma, which comprises multiple stages and has a duration from a few weeks (some scyllarids) to >20 months (some palinurids). The larval development of many Achelata occurs in oceanic waters, where [...] Read more.
Achelata (Palinuridae and Scyllaridae) have a flat, transparent, long-lived planktonic larva called phyllosoma, which comprises multiple stages and has a duration from a few weeks (some scyllarids) to >20 months (some palinurids). The larval development of many Achelata occurs in oceanic waters, where conventional plankton nets usually collect the early- to mid-stages but not the later stages, which remain poorly known. We examined the diversity and distribution of mid- and late-stage phyllosomata in the oceanic waters of the Mexican Caribbean, where the swift Yucatan Current is the dominant feature. The plankton samples were collected at night with a large mid-water trawl in autumn 2012 (55 stations) and spring 2013 (34 stations). In total, we obtained 2599 mid- and late-stage phyllosomata (1742 in autumn, 857 in spring) of five palinurids (Panulirus argus, Panulirus guttatus, Panulirus laevicauda, Palinurellus gundlachi, Justitia longimana) and three scyllarids (Parribacus antarcticus, Scyllarides aequinoctialis, Scyllarus chacei). Overall, the mid-stages were ~2.5 times as abundant as the late stages. The palinurids far outnumbered the scyllarids, and P. argus dominated over all the other species, followed at a distance by P. guttatus. The densities of all the species were generally low, with no clear spatial pattern, and the phyllosomata assemblage composition greatly overlapped between seasons. These results suggest the extensive mixing of the organisms entrained in the strong Yucatan Current, which clearly favors the advection of the phyllosomata in this region despite the presence of some local sub-mesoscale features that may favor short-term retention. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ecology and Diversity of Marine Decapods)
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Article
Unequivocal Differences in Predation Pressure on Large Carabid Beetles between Forestry Treatments
Diversity 2021, 13(10), 484; https://doi.org/10.3390/d13100484 - 03 Oct 2021
Viewed by 346
Abstract
Carabid beetles (Coleoptera: Carabidae) are considered as one of the most cardinal invertebrate predatory groups in many ecosystems, including forests. Previous studies revealed that the predation pressure provided by carabids significantly regulates the ecological network of invertebrates. Nevertheless, there is no direct estimation [...] Read more.
Carabid beetles (Coleoptera: Carabidae) are considered as one of the most cardinal invertebrate predatory groups in many ecosystems, including forests. Previous studies revealed that the predation pressure provided by carabids significantly regulates the ecological network of invertebrates. Nevertheless, there is no direct estimation of the predation risk on carabids, which can be an important proxy for the phenomenon called ecological trap. In our study, we aimed to explore the predation pressure on carabids using 3D-printed decoys installed in two types of forestry treatments, preparation cuts and clear cuts, and control plots in a Hungarian oak–hornbeam forest. We estimated the seasonal, diurnal and treatment-specific aspects of the predation pressure on carabids. Our results reveal a significantly higher predation risk on carabids in both forestry treatments than in the control. Moreover, it was also higher in the nighttime than daytime. Contrarily, no effects of season and microhabitat features were found. Based on these clues we assume that habitats modified by forestry practices may act as an ecological trap for carabids. Our findings contribute to a better understanding of how ecological interactions between species may change in a modified forest environment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Faunistical and Ecological Studies on Carabid Beetles)
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Article
Wildlife Trade Influencing Natural Parrot Populations on a Biodiverse Indonesian Island
Diversity 2021, 13(10), 483; https://doi.org/10.3390/d13100483 - 30 Sep 2021
Viewed by 310
Abstract
Indonesia has been identified as the highest priority country for parrot conservation based on the number of species, endemics, and threats (trapping and smuggling). It is crucial to understand the current population status of parrots in the wild in relation to the illegal [...] Read more.
Indonesia has been identified as the highest priority country for parrot conservation based on the number of species, endemics, and threats (trapping and smuggling). It is crucial to understand the current population status of parrots in the wild in relation to the illegal wildlife trade but the ecology and population dynamics of most parrot species in this region remain poorly understood. We conducted a parrot survey around an area of high biodiversity in the Manusela National Park, in Seram Island, Indonesia. We used a combination of fixed-radius point counts and fixed-width line transects to count multiple species of parrots. We recorded nearly 530 wild parrots from 10 species in and around Manusela National Park. The dominant parrot species were Eos bornea, Trichoglosus haematodus, and Geoffroyus geoffroyi. We applied the Savage selectivity index to evaluate poaching of parrot species in proportion to their abundance and which species had higher than expected poaching pressure. This study has important implications for the conservation status of endemic parrots (Cacatua moluccensis, Lorius domicella, and Eos semilarvata) and shows that parrots in the Manusela NP are largely threatened by poaching. Full article
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Article
A Hotspot of Arid Zone Subterranean Biodiversity: The Robe Valley in Western Australia
Diversity 2021, 13(10), 482; https://doi.org/10.3390/d13100482 - 30 Sep 2021
Viewed by 249
Abstract
Knowledge of subterranean fauna has mostly been derived from caves and streambeds, which are relatively easily accessed. In contrast, subterranean fauna inhabiting regional groundwater aquifers or the vadose zone (between surface soil layers and the watertable) is difficult to sample. Here we provide [...] Read more.
Knowledge of subterranean fauna has mostly been derived from caves and streambeds, which are relatively easily accessed. In contrast, subterranean fauna inhabiting regional groundwater aquifers or the vadose zone (between surface soil layers and the watertable) is difficult to sample. Here we provide species lists for a globally significant subterranean fauna hotspot in the Robe Valley of the Pilbara region, Western Australia. This fauna was collected from up to 50 m below ground level using mining exploration drill holes and monitoring wells. Altogether, 123 subterranean species were collected over a distance of 17 km, comprising 65 troglofauna and 58 stygofauna species. Of these, 61 species were troglobionts and 48 stygobionts. The troglofauna occurs in small voids and fissures in mesas comprised mostly of an iron ore formation, while the stygofauna occurs in the alluvium of a river floodplain. The richness of the Robe Valley is not a localized aberration, but rather reflects the richness of the arid Pilbara region. While legislation in Western Australia has recognized the importance of subterranean fauna, mining is occurring in the Robe Valley hotspot with conditions of environmental approval that are designed to ensure species persistence. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Hotspots of Subterranean Biodiversity)
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Review
Embryonic Development of the Avian Sternum and Its Morphological Adaptations for Optimizing Locomotion
Diversity 2021, 13(10), 481; https://doi.org/10.3390/d13100481 - 29 Sep 2021
Viewed by 583
Abstract
The sternum is part of the forelimb appendicular skeleton found in most terrestrial vertebrates and has become adapted across tetrapods for distinctive modes of locomotion. We review the regulatory mechanisms underlying sternum and forelimb development and discuss the possible gene expression modulation that [...] Read more.
The sternum is part of the forelimb appendicular skeleton found in most terrestrial vertebrates and has become adapted across tetrapods for distinctive modes of locomotion. We review the regulatory mechanisms underlying sternum and forelimb development and discuss the possible gene expression modulation that could be responsible for the sternal adaptations and associated reduction in the forelimb programme found in flightless birds. In three phylogenetically divergent vertebrate lineages that all undertake powered flight, a ventral extension of the sternum, named the keel, has evolved independently, most strikingly in volant birds. In flightless birds, however, the sternal keel is absent, and the sternum is flattened. We review studies in a variety of species that have analysed adaptations in sterna morphology that are related to the animal’s mode of locomotion on land, in the sky and in water. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Evolution, Development, and Diversification of Vertebrates)
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Article
FloCan—A Revised Checklist for the Flora of the Canary Islands
Diversity 2021, 13(10), 480; https://doi.org/10.3390/d13100480 - 29 Sep 2021
Viewed by 395
Abstract
The flora of the Canary Islands has been subject to botanical studies for more than 200 years. Several biodiversity databases are available for the archipelago. However, there are various drivers of change in real biodiversity and the knowledge about it constantly needs to [...] Read more.
The flora of the Canary Islands has been subject to botanical studies for more than 200 years. Several biodiversity databases are available for the archipelago. However, there are various drivers of change in real biodiversity and the knowledge about it constantly needs to be kept track of. Island floras are both: exposed to species loss and to species introductions, either through natural processes or by anthropogenic drivers. Additionally, the evolution of endemic plant species plays a substantial role. Endemic species are sensitive to population decline due to small population sizes and possible low competitiveness against incoming species. Additionally, there is continuous progress in systematics and taxonomy. Species names or their taxonomic attribution can be modified. Here, we check published plant lists for the Canary Islands and literature, and compile currently accepted taxa into an updated checklist. For this FloCan checklist, several sources were compiled, checked for completeness and quality, and their taxonomy was updated. We illustrate how far plant names are considered in regional or global databases. This work represents the current state of knowledge on Canary Island plant diversity, including introduced and recently described taxa. We provide a comprehensive and updated basis for biogeographical and macroecological studies. Particularly, the number of non-native species is being extended substantially. The adaptation to standard international nomenclature supports integration into large-scale studies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue 2021 Feature Papers by Diversity’s Editorial Board Members)
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Article
Diversity and Ecology of Diatoms in Pliocene Deposits of the Tunka Valley (Baikal Rift Zone)
Diversity 2021, 13(10), 479; https://doi.org/10.3390/d13100479 - 29 Sep 2021
Viewed by 314
Abstract
Fossil diatoms are an excellent tool for reconstructing the palaeoenvironmental and palaeogeographic changes involving lacustrine systems. In this work, the diatom content of Pliocene sediments recovered from a core extracted in the Tunka Basin (Baikal Rift Zone, Russia) is described. Revealed by light [...] Read more.
Fossil diatoms are an excellent tool for reconstructing the palaeoenvironmental and palaeogeographic changes involving lacustrine systems. In this work, the diatom content of Pliocene sediments recovered from a core extracted in the Tunka Basin (Baikal Rift Zone, Russia) is described. Revealed by light and scanning electron microscopy, 170 species of diatoms were found. Benthic, alkaliphilic, indifferent, cosmopolitan, and oligosaprobe species predominated. Ecological, geographical, and stratigraphic analysis of diatoms showed two ecozones, differing in taxonomic diversity of species. From the data obtained, palaeoenvironmental conditions of these zone formations have been reconstructed. It was shown that during the period corresponding to sedimentation in Ecozone II, the reservoir was cooler, as suggested by the increase of arctic-alpine taxa. The absence of Baikal Pliocene endemics and the presence of local endemics in the Tunka core indicate that there was no geographical connection between the palaeolake of the Tunka Valley and Lake Baikal during the Pliocene. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Diatom Diversity in the Lakes)
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Article
Predicting the Potential Distribution of Non-Native Mammalian Species Sold in the South African Pet Trade
Diversity 2021, 13(10), 478; https://doi.org/10.3390/d13100478 - 29 Sep 2021
Viewed by 448
Abstract
The pet trade is one of the main pathways of introduction of several mammals worldwide. In South Africa, non-native mammalian species are traded as pets, and so far, only four of these species are considered invasive. We used a list of 24 companion [...] Read more.
The pet trade is one of the main pathways of introduction of several mammals worldwide. In South Africa, non-native mammalian species are traded as pets, and so far, only four of these species are considered invasive. We used a list of 24 companion mammalian species compiled from a previous study. We selected a subset of 14 species for species distribution modeling (SDM) based on their trade popularity, invasion history and potential economic and socio-economic impacts. We aimed to estimate their potential distribution using their distribution records. Our SDM indicated that climate in South Africa was suitable for most traded species. However, commonly and easily available species had the broadest areas of suitable climates, such as house mice (Mus musculus) and Norwegian rats (Rattus norvegicus). In addition, the model with a human footprint suggested a high risk of invasion for Norwegian rats but less for house mice distribution. This assessment suggests the need of strict trade regulations and management strategies for pet mammals with broader suitability, which are already invasive, and most available for sale. In addition, our results provide a baseline approach that can be used to identify mammalian pet species with a potential risk of invasion so that urgent preventive measures can be implemented. Full article
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Article
Biodiversity Evaluation: From Endorsed Indexes to Inclusion of a Pollinator Indicator
Diversity 2021, 13(10), 477; https://doi.org/10.3390/d13100477 - 29 Sep 2021
Viewed by 253
Abstract
There is increasing interest in evaluating biodiversity to preserve ecosystem services. Researchers can sustain policymakers by providing tools, such as indexes and indicators, that need constant implementation to become accepted standards. Implementation may vary from re-evaluation of existing indicators to introduction of new [...] Read more.
There is increasing interest in evaluating biodiversity to preserve ecosystem services. Researchers can sustain policymakers by providing tools, such as indexes and indicators, that need constant implementation to become accepted standards. Implementation may vary from re-evaluation of existing indicators to introduction of new ones based on emerging threats to biodiversity. With the aim of contributing to the compelling need to estimate and counterbalance pollinator loss, we screened existing bioindicators. We first selected indexes/indicators applied to agricultural contexts and concurrently endorsed by a regulatory agency. We then extended our analysis to indexes/indicators based on arthropod taxa and formally recognized at least by national bodies. Our procedure identified a combination of surveys of various animal taxa and remote landscape analyses (e.g., using a GIS and other cartographic tools). When the animals are arthropods, most indexes/indicators can only address confined environments (e.g., grasslands, riversides). Indicator strength was improved by the simultaneous inclusion of biotic and abiotic components. Pollinator sensitivity to changes at micro-habitat level is widely appreciated and may help distinguish agricultural practices. A biodiversity index based on pollinators, including a wide monitoring scheme supplemented by citizen science, is currently fostered at the European level. The results obtained using such an index may finally enable focusing of strategic funding. Our analysis will help to reach this goal. Full article
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