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Integrative Zoology

Vera A Matrosova, Anastasia D Ivanova, Elena V Volodina, Ilya A Volodin, Dmitry Yu Alexandrov, Olga V Sibiryakova, Oleg A Ermakov
Distribution area and taxonomic borders within the species complex Spermophilus erythrogenys sensu lato remain questionable. Early evidence suggests that red-cheecked ground squirrels of the South-East Kazakhstan are remarkable different by the acoustic structure of their alarm calls from the red-cheecked ground squirrels of the Kurgan region in Russia. In this study, we analysed the differences in the acoustic structure of the alarm call and mitochondrial DNA (complete control region, 1005-1006 bp and complete cytochrome b gene, 1140 bp) in three populations of red-cheecked ground squirrels (Tara, Altyn-Emel and Balkhash), all located within isolated by geographical barriers area in the South-East Kazakhstan...
January 28, 2019: Integrative Zoology
Buddhamas Pralle Kriengwatana
Bird songs may advertise aspects of cognition because song learning and learning speed in cognitive tasks are both affected by early-life environments. However, such relationships remain ambiguous in the literature. Here, I discuss two lines of research that may help to demystify links between song learning and cognition. First, learning strategies should be considered when assessing performance to ensure that individual differences in learning ability are not masked by individual differences in learning strategies...
January 28, 2019: Integrative Zoology
Haotian Li, Lingming Kong, Kaiyun Wang, Shuping Zhang, Masaharu Motokawa, Yi Wu, Wenquan Wang, Yuchun Li
Leopoldamys edwardsi Thomas 1882, is a species with wide distribution ranges in southern China, and is absent of studies on geographic variation and species differentiation. We used two mitochondrial (Cytb, CO1) and three nuclear (GHR, IRBP, RAG1) genes to clarify species phylogeography and geographical differentiation. Maximum likelihood (ML) and Bayesian phylogenetic inference (BI) trees consistently indicated that L. edwardsi is a species complex containing three main lineages with high Kimura-2-parameter (K2P) divergences, i...
January 28, 2019: Integrative Zoology
Datian Lang, Burton K Lim, Yun Gao, XiaoPing Wang
Pancreatic ribonuclease 6 (RNase6 or RNase K6) is a protein that belongs to a superfamily thought to be the sole vertebrate-specific enzyme known for a wide range of physiological functions, including digestion, cytotoxicity, angiogenesis, male reproduction and host defense. In our study, 51 functional genes and 11 pseudogenes were identified from 27 Rodentia species. Intriguingly, in the 3 main lineages of Rodents there were multiple RNase6s identified in all species of Ctenohystrica, whereas only a single RNase6 was observed in other Rodentia species examined except for two species in the mouse-related clade...
January 28, 2019: Integrative Zoology
Yichao Zeng, Jindong Zhang, Vanessa Hull
Medicinal herb collection has historical and cultural roots in many rural communities in developing countries. Areas where herb collection occurs may overlap with biodiversity hotspots and crucial habitat of endangered and threatened species. However, impacts of such practices on wildlife are unknown and possibly underestimated, perhaps due to the elusive nature of such activities. We examined this phenomenon in Wolong Nature Reserve, China, a protected area in the South-Central China biodiversity hotspot that also supports a community of Tibetan, Qiang, and Han people who use herb collection as a supplementary source of livelihood...
January 28, 2019: Integrative Zoology
Keshni Gopal, Leszek Karczmarski, Krystal A Tolley
The Heaviside's (or Benguela) dolphin (Cephalorhynchus heavisidii Gray, 1828) is endemic to the west coast of southern Africa. This study investigated the population genetic structure across a large portion of the species distribution using mitochondrial control region and nuclear (microsatellite) markers. A total of 395 biopsy skin samples were analyzed; all of them collected from free-ranging Heaviside's dolphins in seven locations along 1,650 km of coast between Table Bay, South Africa and Walvis Bay, Namibia...
January 28, 2019: Integrative Zoology
Yvon Le Maho, Marcel Holyoak
This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
December 27, 2018: Integrative Zoology
Ning Li, Zheng Wang, Shuai Zhang, Chuan Yan, Xin-Hai Li, Chang-Hu Lu
Habitat fragmentation is one of the most important drivers of change in biodiversity globally. Seed dispersal by birds is crucial for tree regeneration in remnant patchy forests, yet how bird traits could affect seed dispersal pattern in patchy forests is still not understood. We studied to what extent bird traits affect seed-removal networks and whether these traits affect seed deposition and seedling recruitment for three co-fruiting tree species-Taxus chinensis, Cinnamomum bodinieri, and Machilus thunbergii-in a patchy forest...
December 26, 2018: Integrative Zoology
Maria Cristina Tello-Ramos, T Andrew Hurly, Susan D Healy
Animals that feed from resources that are constant in space and that refill may benefit from repeating the order in which they visit locations. This is a behavior known as traplining, a spatial phenomenon. Hummingbirds, like other central-place foragers, use short traplines when moving between several rewarding sites. Here we investigated whether traplining hummingbirds also use relevant temporal information when choosing which flowers to visit. Wild rufous hummingbirds that were allowed to visit three artificial flower patches in which flowers were refilled 20 minutes after they had been depleted, repeated the order in which they visited the three patches...
December 26, 2018: Integrative Zoology
Shannon A Richard, Eric A Tillman, John S Humphrey, Michael L Avery, M Rockwell Parker
Animals communicate with potential mates using species-specific signals, and pheromones are powerful sexual signals that modify conspecific behavior to facilitate mate location. Among the vertebrates, snakes are especially adept in mate searching via chemical trailing, which is particularly relevant given that many snake species are invasive outside their native ranges. Chemical signals used in mate choice are thus potentially valuable tools for management of invasive snake species. The Burmese python (Python bivittatus) is an invasive snake in the Florida Everglades where it is negatively impacting native fauna...
December 26, 2018: Integrative Zoology
Susan D Healy
This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
December 26, 2018: Integrative Zoology
Songwei Wang, Mengke Wang, Zhizhong Wang, Lishi
Some shallow and middle optic tectum (OT) neurons have stable, asymmetric full-screen ON and OFF stimulus response properties, which makes them candidates for delay encoding. In this paper, we investigated the delay encoding mechanism for the neuronal clusters in the OT region of pigeons and determined the mechanism of delay coding in the OT region. By analyzing the responses of the neuron cluster under full-screen switch-on and -off stimulation, we found that the delay coding was widespread in the OT region where the ON/OFF stimulation time difference was 4-6 ms...
December 26, 2018: Integrative Zoology
Magnus Magnusson, Gustaf Samelius, Birger Hörnfeldt, Frauke Ecke
Grey-sided voles (Myodes rufocanus Sundevall, 1846) and bank voles (Myodes glareolus Schreber, 1780) co-exist in boreal forests in northern Scandinavia. Previous studies suggest that the two species interact interspecifically, the grey-sided vole being the dominant species. We tested the hypothesis that bank voles shift their diet due to competition with the dominant grey-sided vole by studying stable isotope ratios in both species. Muscle samples were taken from voles in patches of old forest occupied by only bank voles and patches of old forest occupied by both grey-sided voles and bank voles...
December 26, 2018: Integrative Zoology
Dongge Guo, Bo Luo, Kangkang Zhang, Muxun Liu, Walter Metzner, Ying Liu, Jiang Feng
Acoustic signals play a crucial role in transmitting information and maintaining social stability in gregarious animals, especially in echolocating bats which rely primarily on biological sonar for navigating in the dark. In the context of foraging without relying on tactile, visual, or olfactory cues, acoustic signals convey information not only on food, but also on ownership and defense of resources. However, studies on such information remain fragmentary. In the present study, we aim to document the social vocal repertoire of Myotis macrodactylus at natural foraging sites...
December 26, 2018: Integrative Zoology
Irene Cobo-Simón, Belén Méndez-Cea, Héctor Portillo, Fausto Elvir, Hermes Vega, Francisco Javier Gallego, Gustavo Fontecha
Biosphere reserves are protected areas whose purpose is to combine conservation and sustainable development. However, their effectiveness is poorly tested, especially from an ecological and genetic approach. In this sense, Peromyscus genus represents an excellent bioindicator to address these questions, due to its short life and high evolutionary rate and fecundity. For conservation managers, genetic structure can increase the rate of loss of genetic diversity since alleles exclusive of a subpopulation are more likely to disappear as consequence of genetic drift in comparison with a panmictic population...
December 26, 2018: Integrative Zoology
Hongyu Niu, Wei Chu, Xianfeng Yi, Hongmao Zhang
In the struggle for survival, scatter-hoarding rodents are known to cache food and pilfer the caches of others. The extent to which rodents utilize auditory/visual cues from conspecifics to improve cache-pilfering is unknown. Here, Siberian chipmunks (Tamias sibiricus) were allowed to search for caches of Corylus heterophylla seeds (man-made caches and animal-made caches) after experiencing cues from a conspecific's cache-searching events. For each type of cache, three experimental scenarios were presented: 1) alone (control), 2) auditory/visual (hearing and seeing conspecific's cache-searcing events) and 3) auditory only (hearing conspecific's cache-searcing events only) with random orders...
December 26, 2018: Integrative Zoology
Andrey Tchabovsky, Ludmila Savinetskaya, Elena Surkova
Studying abrupt ecological shifts under gradual environmental change caused, in particular, by human activity is important for understanding the fundamental aspects and underlying mechanisms of ecological resilience. One of the rare well-documented examples of an abrupt ecological shift is the delayed step transition of the population of a desert rodent, the midday gerbil (Meriones meridianus Pallas, 1773), from high- (1994-2002) to low-abundance (2003-2017) regimes. This was in response to landscape transformation from desert to steppe caused by the drastic reduction of livestock in the rangelands of southern Russia after the collapse of the USSR in the early 1990s...
December 26, 2018: Integrative Zoology
Florian Kletty, Mathilde Tissier, Charlotte Kourkgy, Fabrice Capber, Alexandre Zahariev, Nicolas Chatelain, Julien Courtecuisse, Yvon Le Maho, Caroline Habold
Agriculture intensification, marked by the generalization of crop monoculture, by the increase in plot size and by the reduction of plant diversity, has led to huge decline in wildlife in European farmlands. In such a habitat, research has long been biased towards birds and invertebrates, whilst very few studies have yet investigated the effect on small mammals. Considering the European hamster, Cricetus cricetus, we therefore review the different techniques that can be used to investigate the impact of environmental changes and conservation measures in small and endangered wild mammals...
December 26, 2018: Integrative Zoology
Zachary V Johnson, Larry J Young
The tremendous diversity of animal behaviors has inspired generations of scientists from an array of biological disciplines. To complement investigations of ecological and evolutionary factors contributing to behavioral evolution, modern sequencing, gene editing, computational and neuroscience tools now provide a means to discover the proximate mechanisms upon which natural selection acts to generate behavioral diversity. Social behaviors are motivated behaviors that can differ tremendously between closely related species, suggesting phylogenetic plasticity in their underlying biological mechanisms...
November 2018: Integrative Zoology
Aaryn Mustoe, Jack H Taylor, Jeffrey A French
Oxytocin (OT) is a hypothalamic nonapeptide that mediates a host of physiological and behavioral processes including reproductive physiology and social attachments. While the OT sequence structure is highly conserved among mammals, New World monkeys (NWMs) represent an unusual "hot spot" in OT structure variability among mammals. At least 6 distinct OT ligand variants among NWMs exist, yet it is currently unclear whether these evolved structural changes result in meaningful functional consequences...
November 2018: Integrative Zoology
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