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Full-Text Articles in Life Sciences

Ecological Considerations And Application Of Urban Tree Selection In Massachusetts, Ashley Mcelhinney Jul 2019

Ecological Considerations And Application Of Urban Tree Selection In Massachusetts, Ashley Mcelhinney

Masters Theses

Trees provide countless environmental, economic, and societal benefits to the urban environment, and may become increasingly important to maintaining environmental quality and human well-being in the face of increasing urbanization and climate change. However, trees in these urban areas are rapidly diminishing across the United States. Much of this loss can be prevented with proper planning and management, focused on selecting tree species that are both well-suited to the area’s growing conditions and able to survive the many stress factors in an urban setting. Choosing which tree species to plant in Massachusetts is especially challenging considering the lack of ...


Modeling The Abundance And Distribution Of Terrestrial Plants Through Space And Time, Caroline Curtis Nov 2018

Modeling The Abundance And Distribution Of Terrestrial Plants Through Space And Time, Caroline Curtis

Doctoral Dissertations

Anthropogenically-driven changes threaten ecosystems and species over regional to global scales. I addressed several questions related to how species ranges will respond to these changes over large spatial and temporal extents to better understand what determines where a species occurs.

First, I modeled presence and abundance of two widespread invasive plants in the southwest U.S. under current and projected future climatic conditions, from which I inferred impact risk. These results provide more insight than presence modeling alone and highlight the possibility of increased invasion pressure in the future.

Second, I tested the assumption that expert-based climatic tolerance data will ...


The Effects Of Anthropogenic Stress On Nitrogen-Cycling Microbial Communities In Temperate And Tropical Soils, George S. Hamaoui Jr. Jul 2017

The Effects Of Anthropogenic Stress On Nitrogen-Cycling Microbial Communities In Temperate And Tropical Soils, George S. Hamaoui Jr.

Doctoral Dissertations

In this dissertation several research studies are discussed that characterize the effects of anthropogenic, or human-induced, stress on both ammonia-oxidizing and total bacterial soil microbial communities. The disturbances of land-use change in tropical, South American rainforests and artificial warming and nitrogen (N) fertilization in temperate, North American forests were investigated as these disturbances represent past and current disturbances caused by human landscape alteration and climate change. Initially, the response of soil ammonia-oxidizing microbial communities to land-use change from primary rainforest to pasture and, finally, back to secondary forest was determined. Next, these analyses of land-use change effects were expanded to ...


Methods For Incorporating Ecological Impacts With Climate Uncertainty To Support Robust Flood Management Decision-Making, Caitlin M. Spence Mar 2017

Methods For Incorporating Ecological Impacts With Climate Uncertainty To Support Robust Flood Management Decision-Making, Caitlin M. Spence

Doctoral Dissertations

Modern and historic flood risk management involves accommodating multiple sources of sources of uncertainty and potential impacts across a broad range of interrelated sectors. Sources of uncertainty that affect planning include internal climate variability, anthropogenic changes such as land use and system performance expectations, and more recently changes in climatology that affect the resources supporting the system. Flood management systems potentially impact human settlements within and beyond the systems’ scope of planning, local weather patterns, and associated ecological systems. Federal guidelines across nations have called for greater consideration of uncertainty and impacts of water resources planning projects, but methods for ...


Modeling Historical And Future Range Of Variability Scenarios In The Yuba River Watershed, Tahoe National Forest, California, Maritza Mallek Jul 2016

Modeling Historical And Future Range Of Variability Scenarios In The Yuba River Watershed, Tahoe National Forest, California, Maritza Mallek

Masters Theses

In California's northern Sierra Nevada mountains, the fire-dependent processes of forest ecosystems have been interrupted and altered by human land use and fire suppression. U.S. Forest Service policy directs land managers to plan for a future that includes multiple use and the restoration of resilient ecosystems. Planning decisions are to be informed by an analysis of the range of variability of ecological processes at multiple scales. Current climate trends in the northern Sierra are of increasing temperatures, increased precipitation, and earlier snowmelt, as well as changes to the frequency and duration of drought. These climate changes have and ...


Integrated Modeling Of Land Use And Climate Change Impacts On Multiscale Ecosystems Of Central African Watersheds, Simon Nampindo Nov 2014

Integrated Modeling Of Land Use And Climate Change Impacts On Multiscale Ecosystems Of Central African Watersheds, Simon Nampindo

Doctoral Dissertations

Assessment and management of ecosystem services demands diverse knowledge of the system components. Land use change occurring mainly through deforestation, expansion of agriculture and unregulated extraction of natural resources are the greatest challenges of the Congo basin and yet is central to supporting over 100 million people. This study undertook to implement an integrated modeling of multiscale ecosystems of central African watersheds and model the impact of anthropogenic factors on elephant population in Greater Virunga landscape. The study was conducted at varied scales, regional, landscape, and community. Regional study included watershed analysis and hydrological assessment using remotely sensed data implemented ...


Landscape Predictors Of Current And Future Distribution Of Mountain Gorillas (Gorilla Beringei Beringei) In Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, Uganda, Dennis Babaasa Nov 2014

Landscape Predictors Of Current And Future Distribution Of Mountain Gorillas (Gorilla Beringei Beringei) In Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, Uganda, Dennis Babaasa

Doctoral Dissertations

Context: The impacts of ecological, anthropogenic and future climate change on the distribution of wild mountain gorillas (Gorilla beringei beringei) are of ongoing concern. Knowing the factors that determine gorilla habitat suitability now and in future is essential for conservation planning. The mountain gorilla is recognized by IUCN Red Data Book as critically endangered and a great tourist attraction. However, the factors that impact on their spatial use of Bwindi are poorly understood.

Aims: I aimed at determining the major factors that determine gorilla distribution, predict the wild gorilla habitat suitability and establish the vulnerability index of the gorillas to ...


Ecology And Conservation Of The Montane Forest Avian Community In Northeastern North America, William V. Deluca Feb 2013

Ecology And Conservation Of The Montane Forest Avian Community In Northeastern North America, William V. Deluca

Open Access Dissertations

Montane forests provide habitat for unique assemblages of flora and fauna that contribute significantly to a region’s biodiversity. Previous work indicates that montane forest ecosystems are exceedingly vulnerable to a host of anthropogenic stressors including climate change, atmospheric deposition, and recreation, to name a few. Montane forests and other high elevation ecosystems are considered to be among the first and most severely impacted by climate change. It is therefore, imperative to evaluate anthropogenic impacts on montane ecosystems and maintain reliable monitoring methods that are capable of tracking potential shifts in the distribution of species dependent on these systems. I ...


Piping Plover (Charadrius Melodius) Conservation On The Barrier Islands Of New York: Habitat Quality And Implications In A Changing Climate, Jennifer Ruth Seavey Sep 2009

Piping Plover (Charadrius Melodius) Conservation On The Barrier Islands Of New York: Habitat Quality And Implications In A Changing Climate, Jennifer Ruth Seavey

Open Access Dissertations

Habitat loss is the leading cause of species extinction. Protecting and managing habitat quality is vital to an organism's persistence, and essential to endangered species recovery. We conducted an investigation of habitat quality and potential impacts from climate change to piping plovers (Charadrius melodius) breeding on the barrier island ecosystem of New York, during 2003-2005. Our first step in this analysis was to examined the relationship between two common measures of habitat quality: density and productivity (Chapter 1). We used both central and limiting tendency data analysis to find that density significantly limited productivity across many spatial scales, especially ...