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Conservation Physiology

Sergey Morozov, R J Scott McCairns, Juha Merilä
Intermittent-flow respirometry is widely used to measure oxygen uptake rates and subsequently estimate aerobic metabolic rates of aquatic animals. However, the lack of a standard quality-control software to detect technical problems represents a potential impediment to comparisons across studies in the field of evolutionary and conservation physiology. Here, we introduce 'FishResp', a versatile R package and its graphical implementation for quality-control and filtering of raw respirometry data. Our goal is to provide a straightforward, cross-platform and free software to help improve the quality and comparability of metabolic rate estimates for reducing methodological fragmentation in the field of aquatic respirometry...
2019: Conservation Physiology
Morgane Touzot, Loïc Teulier, Thierry Lengagne, Jean Secondi, Marc Théry, Paul-Antoine Libourel, Ludovic Guillard, Nathalie Mondy
The presence of artificial light at night (ALAN) is currently a global phenomenon. By altering the photoperiod, ALAN may directly affect the physiology and behaviour of many organisms, such as the timing of daily rhythms, hormonal regulation, food intake, metabolism, migration and reproduction. Surprisingly while it is known that ALAN exposure strongly influences health of humans and laboratory animals, studies on wildlife remain scarce. Amphibians are one of the most nocturnal groups of vertebrates and exhibit an unfavourable conservation status in most parts of the world...
2019: Conservation Physiology
Stacey R Tecot, Mitchell T Irwin, Jean-Luc Raharison
Glucocorticoids are metabolic byproducts of animals' physiological responses to ecological or social challenges and are thought to represent an adaptive response allowing beneficial responses to short-term challenges. Glucocorticoid metabolites (GCs) can be assayed non-invasively through faeces and therefore can be a useful tool to gauge the health of populations experiencing natural and/or anthropogenic stressors. However, the response of GCs to anthropogenic stressors varies, with both higher and lower GC levels reported...
2019: Conservation Physiology
Tiffany Yang, Heather L Haas, Samir Patel, Ronald Smolowitz, Michael C James, Amanda S Williard
We documented blood biochemistry and haematology of healthy loggerhead turtles ( Caretta caretta ) in the Northwest (NW) Atlantic in order to establish clinical reference intervals (RIs) for this threatened population. Blood samples were analysed from migratory loggerheads captured off the Mid-Atlantic coast of the USA in 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2016 as part of a long-term research program. Blood variables were determined using a point-of-care analyser, and a veterinary diagnostic laboratory service. We calculated 95% RIs with associated 90% confidence intervals (CIs) for each blood variable...
2019: Conservation Physiology
Mark A Ditmer, Leland K Werden, Jessie C Tanner, John B Vincent, Peggy Callahan, Paul A Iaizzo, Timothy G Laske, David L Garshelis
Unmanned aircraft systems (UAS; i.e. 'drones') provide new opportunities for data collection in ecology, wildlife biology and conservation. Yet, several studies have documented behavioral or physiological responses to close-proximity UAS flights. We experimentally tested whether American black bears ( Ursus americanus ) habituate to repeated UAS exposure and whether tolerance levels persist during an extended period without UAS flights. Using implanted cardiac biologgers, we measured heart rate (HR) of five captive bears before and after the first of five flights each day...
2019: Conservation Physiology
Kathleen E Hunt, Charles Innis, Constance Merigo, Elizabeth A Burgess, Terry Norton, Deborah Davis, Adam E Kennedy, C Loren Buck
Sea turtle rehabilitation clinics and aquaria frequently transport stranded sea turtles long distances out of water, e.g. for release at sites with appropriate water temperatures. Endangered Kemp's ridley turtles ( Lepidochelys kempii ) are known to exhibit an adrenal stress response during such transports. In an opportunistic study of turtles transported by road from Massachusetts to Georgia for release, we tested whether placing turtles in saltwater pools for short periods after transport would help turtles recover from transport-related stress...
2019: Conservation Physiology
Catharine J Cook, Gary Burness, Chris C Wilson
Early developmental stages of cold-adapted ectotherms such as brook trout ( Salvelinus fontinalis ) are at higher risk of mortality with increasing water temperatures. To determine the amount of variation present in early life, which may allow for potential adaptation to increasing temperature, we examined the routine metabolic rates (RMR) of wild-origin brook trout embryos and alevins reared at normal (5°C) and elevated (9°C) temperatures. The experiment was structured to examine variation in RMR within and among several levels of biological organization (family, population and ancestral type (native vs...
2018: Conservation Physiology
Ian A Bouyoucos, Brendan S Talwar, Edward J Brooks, Jacob W Brownscombe, Steven J Cooke, Cory D Suski, John W Mandelman
Some shark populations face declines owing to targeted capture and by-catch in longline fisheries. Exercise intensity during longline capture and physiological status may be associated, which could inform management strategies aimed at reducing the impacts of longline capture on sharks. The purpose of this study was to characterize relationships between exercise intensity and physiological status of longline-captured nurse sharks ( Ginglymostoma cirratum ) and Caribbean reef sharks ( Carcharhinus perezi ). Exercise intensity of longline-captured sharks was quantified with digital cameras and accelerometers, which was paired with blood-based physiological metrics from samples obtained immediately post-capture...
2018: Conservation Physiology
Violeta Velikova, Tsonko Tsonev, Massimiliano Tattini, Carmen Arena, Sashka Krumova, Dimitrina Koleva, Violeta Peeva, Svetoslav Stojchev, Svetla Todinova, Luigi Gennaro Izzo, Cecilia Brunetti, Miroslava Stefanova, Stefka Taneva, Francesco Loreto
Platanus orientalis covers a very fragmented area in Europe and, at the edge of its natural distribution, is considered a relic endangered species near extinction. In our study, it was hypothesized that individuals from the edge of the habitat, with stronger climate constrains (drier and warmer environment, Italy, IT ecotype), developed different mechanisms of adaptation than those growing under optimal conditions at the center of the habitat (more humid and colder environment, Bulgaria, BG ecotype). Indeed, the two P...
2018: Conservation Physiology
Grace L Parikh, Christopher R Webster, John A Vucetich, John J Durocher, Joseph K Bump
Physiological stress in wildlife can be a useful indicator of a population's response to environmental factors. By using non-invasive endocrinological techniques, such as fecal sampling, potential confounding factors associated with the stress of capture can be avoided. A potential drawback of fecal sampling, however, is degradation of samples which may produce aberrant measurements of fecal glucocorticoid metabolites. In vertebrates, glucocorticoids, such as corticosterone, become elevated in response to stress...
2018: Conservation Physiology
Kirsten Price, Charles Kittridge, Zach Damby, Stephen G Hayes, Elizabeth A Addis
Urban environments are expanding. As rural areas are urbanized, animals living in those environments must respond. Examinations of ecological responses to urbanization are abundant, but much less work has focused on the physiological responses driving those ecological patterns, particularly in mammals. Whether an animal interprets urbanized environments as stressful or not can help us understand, and even predict, the likelihood of individuals persisting in urbanized areas. Unpredictable events can cause stress and responses to such events can deplete limited stores of energy...
2018: Conservation Physiology
Björn Illing
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
2018: Conservation Physiology
Ghulam Nabi, Yujiang Hao, Todd R Robeck, Zheng Jinsong, Ding Wang
The objectives of this study were to investigate the effects of habitat and biological state on the physiology of critically endangered wild and semi-natural Yangtze Finless Porpoises (YFPs; Neophocaena asiaeorientalis ssp. asiaeorientalis ) by measuring and comparing serum biochemical parameters. A total of 168 YFPs were sampled, 68 living in the semi-natural (Tian-E-Zhou Oxbow) and 98 living in the wild (Poyang Lake, PL) environment. The YFPs in the Tian-E-Zhou Oxbow were sampled from 2002 to 2015 and in the PL from 2009 to 2017...
2018: Conservation Physiology
William Joyce, Michael Axelsson, Stuart Egginton, Anthony P Farrell, Elizabeth L Crockett, Kristin M O'Brien
The Southern Ocean has experienced stable, cold temperatures for over 10 million years, yet particular regions are currently undergoing rapid warming. To investigate the impacts of warming on cardiovascular oxygen transport, we compared the cardio-respiratory performance in an Antarctic notothenioid ( Notothenia coriiceps ) that was maintained at 0 or 5°C for 6.0-9.5 weeks. When compared at the fish's respective acclimation temperature, the oxygen consumption rate and cardiac output were significantly higher in 5°C-acclimated than 0°C-acclimated fish...
2018: Conservation Physiology
Pablo Burraco, Maider Iglesias-Carrasco, Carlos Cabido, Ivan Gomez-Mestre
Consequences of human actions like global warming, spread of exotic species or resource consumption are pushing species to extinction. Even species considered to be at low extinction risk often show signs of local declines. Here, we evaluate the impact of eucalypt plantations, the best-known exotic tree species worldwide and its interaction with temperature and predators on amphibian development, growth, antipredator responses and physiology. For this purpose, we applied a fully factorial experiment crossing two types of leaf litter (native oak or eucalypt), two temperatures (15 and 20°C) and presence/absence of native predators...
2018: Conservation Physiology
Alexander G Little
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
2018: Conservation Physiology
Michał Glądalski, Adam Kaliński, Jarosław Wawrzyniak, Mirosława Bańbura, Marcin Markowski, Joanna Skwarska, Jerzy Bańbura
Most passerines use nests as the exclusive place to lay and incubate eggs and bring nestlings up to fledging. Nests of secondary cavity nesters, like tits, provide a moist, warm and protected habitat for reproduction of blood parasites. Offspring fitness depends on interactions between parental care and environmental constraints. Life-history theory suggests that macro- and micro-parasites may generate selection pressures by affecting host health. In the present study, we replaced natural great tit Parus major nests in two, structurally and floristically contrasting sites (an urban parkland and a rich deciduous forest, located 10 km apart in Łódź, central Poland), with fresh, sterilized, artificial moss-cotton wool nests, twice, on the fifth and tenth day of nestlings life...
2018: Conservation Physiology
Erika Sundell, Daniel Morgenroth, Jeroen Brijs, Andreas Ekström, Albin Gräns, Erik Sandblom
Greater salinity variations resulting from ongoing climate change requires consideration in conservation management as this may impact on the performance of aquatic organisms. Euryhaline fish exhibit osmoregulatory flexibility and can exploit a wide range of salinities. In seawater (SW), they drink and absorb water in the intestine, which is associated with increased gastrointestinal blood flow. Yet, detailed information on other cardiovascular changes and their control across salinities is scant. Such knowledge is fundamental to understand how fish are affected during migrations between environments with different salinities, as well as by increased future salinity variability...
2018: Conservation Physiology
Maria G Palacios, Verónica L D'Amico, Marcelo Bertellotti
Negative effects of ecotourism on wildlife are rising worldwide. Conservation physiology can play a major role in protecting wildlife by providing early alerts on changes in the status of individuals exposed to tourist activities. We measured an integrated set of immune and health-state indices to evaluate the effects of ecotourism on Magellanic penguins ( Spheniscus magellanicus ). We studied two reproductive colonies that differed in the intensity of tourism and population trends: Punta Tombo (higher tourism intensity, declining population) and San Lorenzo (lower tourism intensity, growing population)...
2018: Conservation Physiology
Katharina Ruthsatz, Kathrin H Dausmann, Myron A Peck, Claudia Drees, Nikita M Sabatino, Laura I Becker, Janica Reese, Lisa Hartmann, Julian Glos
Environmental variation induced by natural and anthropogenic processes including climate change may threaten species by causing environmental stress. Anuran larvae experiencing environmental stress may display altered thyroid hormone (TH) status with potential implications for physiological traits. Therefore, any capacity to adapt to environmental changes through plastic responses provides a key to determining species vulnerability to environmental variation. We investigated whether developmental temperature ( T dev ), altered TH levels and whether the interactive effect of both affect standard metabolic rate (SMR), body condition (BC), survival and thermal tolerance in larvae of the African clawed frog ( Xenopus laevis ) reared at five temperatures with experimentally altered TH levels...
2018: Conservation Physiology
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