Conservation and Evolution Biology of Endangered Animals

A special issue of Animals (ISSN 2076-2615). This special issue belongs to the section "Ecology and Conservation".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 25 June 2024 | Viewed by 41287

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Key Laboratory of Bio-Resources and Eco-Environment (Ministry of Education), College of Life Sciences, Sichuan University, Chengdu 610041, China
Interests: giant panda; conservation biology; adaptive evolution; multi-omics

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Guest Editor
The Sichuan Key Laboratory for Conservation Biology of Endangered Wildlife, Sichuan University, Chengdu 610064, China
Interests: endangered animals; conservation biology; adaptive evolution; multi-omics

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The conservation and management of endangered animals is a considerable challenge, and extensive research is required to enable us to understand their evolution and adaptation to their environments. This Special Issue of Animals, entitled “Conservation and Evolution Biology of Endangered Animals”, focuses on the biology, ecology, and evolutionary processes of endangered animals, and aims to shed light on their conservation and evolution.

We encourage authors to submit original research articles that address critical topics associated with the conservation and evolution biology of endangered animals. Topics may include the behavior, reproduction, evolutionary adaptations, genetic diversity, population dynamics, conservation genetics, and conservation strategies of endangered species. This Special Issue could provide a platform for researchers, conservationists, and policymakers to share their findings, insights, and perspectives on the conservation and evolution biology of endangered animals. We hope that it will contribute to improving the conservation of endangered species, and ultimately, in mitigating the threats they face.

We look forward to receiving your contributions.

Prof. Dr. Xiuyue Zhang
Dr. Chuang Zhou
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Animals is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2400 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • endangered animals
  • conservation
  • evolution

Published Papers (3 papers)

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Research

15 pages, 1917 KiB  
Article
Integrated miRNA and mRNA Sequencing Reveals the Sterility Mechanism in Hybrid Yellow Catfish Resulting from Pelteobagrus fulvidraco (♀) × Pelteobagrus vachelli (♂)
by Shu Li, Qiao Yang, Maohua Li, Yue Lan and Zhaobin Song
Animals 2024, 14(11), 1586; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani14111586 - 27 May 2024
Viewed by 381
Abstract
The hybrid yellow catfish exhibits advantages over pure yellow catfish in terms of fast growth, fast development, a high feeding rate, and strong immunity; additionally, it is almost sterile, thus ensuring the conservation of the genetic stock of fish populations. To investigate the [...] Read more.
The hybrid yellow catfish exhibits advantages over pure yellow catfish in terms of fast growth, fast development, a high feeding rate, and strong immunity; additionally, it is almost sterile, thus ensuring the conservation of the genetic stock of fish populations. To investigate the sterility mechanism in hybrid yellow catfish (P. fulvidraco (♀) × P. vachelli (♂)), the mRNA and miRNA of the gonads of P. fulvidraco, P. vachelli, and a hybrid yellow catfish were analyzed to characterize the differentially expressed genes; this was carried out to help establish gene expression datasets to assist in the further determination of the mechanisms of genetic sterility in hybrid yellow catfish. In total, 1709 DEGs were identified between the hybrid and two pure yellow catfishes. A KEGG pathway analysis indicated that several genes related to reproductive functions were upregulated, including those involved in the cell cycle, progesterone-mediated oocyte maturation, and oocyte meiosis, and genes associated with ECM–receptor interaction were downregulated. The spermatogenesis-related GO genes CFAP70, RSPH6A, and TSGA10 were identified as being downregulated DEGs in the hybrid yellow catfish. Sixty-three DEmiRNAs were identified between the hybrid and the two pure yellow catfish species. The upregulated DEmiRNAs ipu-miR-194a and ipu-miR-499 were found to target the spermatogenesis-related genes CFAP70 and RSPH6A, respectively, playing a negative regulatory role, which may underscore the miRNA–mRNA regulatory mechanism of sterility in hybrid yellow catfish. The differential expression of ipu-miR-196d, ipu-miR-125b, and ipu-miR-150 and their target genes spidr, cep85, and kcnn4, implicated in reproductive processes, was verified via qRT-PCR, consistent with the transcriptome sequencing expression trends. This study provides deep insights into the mechanism of hybrid sterility in vertebrate groups, thereby contributing to achieving a better understanding and management of fish conservation related to hybrid sterility. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Conservation and Evolution Biology of Endangered Animals)
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11 pages, 1684 KiB  
Article
Trophic Niche Differentiation in Two Sympatric Nuthatch Species (Sitta yunnanensis and Sitta nagaensis)
by Qiang Guo, Xi Lu, Chongxin Xie, Jiansong Zhang, Xianyin Xu, Yuhan Qian, Xu Luo and Yubao Duan
Animals 2024, 14(8), 1146; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani14081146 - 10 Apr 2024
Viewed by 660
Abstract
Sympatric closely related species may experience interspecific trophic competition due to ecological similarity; they may isolate in terms of diet or habitat use as a strategy to avoid competition. The body tissues of consumers contain stable isotope signatures information that can be applied [...] Read more.
Sympatric closely related species may experience interspecific trophic competition due to ecological similarity; they may isolate in terms of diet or habitat use as a strategy to avoid competition. The body tissues of consumers contain stable isotope signatures information that can be applied to infer their dietary information. In this study, δ13C and δ15N stable isotopes were analyzed to determine the dietary information and trophic niches of sympatric coexisting Sitta yunnanensis and Sitta nagaensis. The results showed that the food sources of S. yunnanensis and S. nagaensis were from six orders, including Orthoptera, and the cumulative contribution rate was 99.97%, with the two species eating similar diets but at different rates. The larger δ13C of S. yunnanensis indicates that it had a wider range of habitats for feeding, while the difference in δ15N values was not significant (p > 0.05), indicating that both species feed on similar nutrient levels. As determined by Bayesian ellipses, the isotopic niches of S. yunnanensis and S. nagaensis were differentiated; the isotopic niche width of S. yunnanensis is 2.69‰2, which was larger than that of S. nagaensis (0.73‰2), indicates that differentiation between the two species in diet or habitat use reduced competition. Trophic niche differentiation and differences in foraging proportions may be the principal resource allocation mechanisms behind S. yunnanensis and S. nagaensis coexistence. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Conservation and Evolution Biology of Endangered Animals)
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11 pages, 1345 KiB  
Article
Hybridization in Canids—A Case Study of Pampas Fox (Lycalopex gymnocercus) and Domestic Dog (Canis lupus familiaris) Hybrid
by Bruna Elenara Szynwelski, Rafael Kretschmer, Cristina Araujo Matzenbacher, Flávia Ferrari, Marcelo Meller Alievi and Thales Renato Ochotorena de Freitas
Animals 2023, 13(15), 2505; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani13152505 - 3 Aug 2023
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 39549
Abstract
Hybridization between species with different evolutionary trajectories can be a powerful threat to wildlife conservation. Anthropogenic activities, such as agriculture and livestock, have led to the degradation and loss of natural habitats for wildlife. Consequently, the incidence of interspecific hybridization between wild and [...] Read more.
Hybridization between species with different evolutionary trajectories can be a powerful threat to wildlife conservation. Anthropogenic activities, such as agriculture and livestock, have led to the degradation and loss of natural habitats for wildlife. Consequently, the incidence of interspecific hybridization between wild and domestic species has increased, although cases involving species of different genera are rare. In Vacaria, a Southern city in Brazil, a female canid with a strange phenotype, which had characteristics between the phenotype of the domestic dog (Canis familiaris) and that of the pampas fox (Lycalopex gymnocercus), was found. Our analysis suggests that the animal is a hybrid between a domestic dog and a pampas fox, but future studies are necessary to investigate additional cases of this hybridization in nature. This finding worries for the conservation of wild canids in South America, especially concerning Lycalopex species. Hybridization with the domestic dog may have harmful effects on pampas fox populations due to the potential for introgression and disease transmission by the domestic dog. Therefore, future studies to explore the consequences of hybridization on genetics, ecology, and behavior of wild populations will be essential to improve the conservation of this species. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Conservation and Evolution Biology of Endangered Animals)
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