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Theses/Dissertations

2013

Ecology

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Articles 1 - 19 of 19

Full-Text Articles in Life Sciences

Ecology, Phylogenetics, And Conservation Of Draba Asterophora Complex: A Rare, Alpine, Endemic From Lake Tahoe, Usa, Emily Ruth Smith Putnam Dec 2013

Ecology, Phylogenetics, And Conservation Of Draba Asterophora Complex: A Rare, Alpine, Endemic From Lake Tahoe, Usa, Emily Ruth Smith Putnam

Theses and Dissertations

Rare, alpine, endemic species are particularly at risk for extinction. Alpine environments are especially vulnerable to climate change and human impacts, such as ski resort development and snowmaking. Draba asterophora Payson is a rare, alpine species that occurs only in three disjunct mountain-top regions surrounding Lake Tahoe. It is currently threatened by human impacts, such as ski resorts, as well as indirect influences of climate change and therefore in need of better understanding for conservation purposes. Draba asterophora may be able to serve as a case study for other similarly vulnerable, rare, alpine, endemic species with conservation needs. We utilized ...


Environmental Regulation Of Tidal Wetland Microbial Communities And Associated Biogeochemistry, Ember Morrissey Dec 2013

Environmental Regulation Of Tidal Wetland Microbial Communities And Associated Biogeochemistry, Ember Morrissey

Theses and Dissertations

Microbial communities play an essential role in carrying out the biogeochemical cycles that sustain life on Earth, yet we know very little about their ecology. One question of particular interest is how environmental conditions shape microbial community structure (i.e., the types of organisms found in the community and their relative abundance), and whether such changes in structure are related to biogeochemical function. It is the aim of this dissertation to address this question via the examination of carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) cycling in wetland ecosystems, which due to their diverse hydrology have a profound influence on biogeochemical cycles ...


Winter Waterbird Ecology On The Great Salt Lake, Utah, And Interactions With Commercial Harvest Of Brine Shrimp Cysts, Anthony J. Roberts Dec 2013

Winter Waterbird Ecology On The Great Salt Lake, Utah, And Interactions With Commercial Harvest Of Brine Shrimp Cysts, Anthony J. Roberts

All Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Interactions among commercial fisheries and birds have been studied in open ocean ecosystems and at aquaculture facilities. On the Great Salt Lake (GSL), Utah, USA, a commercial harvest of brine shrimp (Artemia franciscana) eggs (i.e. cysts) occurs annually during fall and winter. Coinciding with commercial harvest is the use of the GSL by millions of waterbirds which has the potential to result in conflict among industry and birds. The objectives of my research were to examine fall and winter ecology of birds using the GSL and interactions with the brine shrimp cyst harvest. I examined the influence of temperature ...


Environmental Constraints On Cyanomyophage Abundance In The Subtropical Pacific Ocean, Tiana Maria Pimentel Dec 2013

Environmental Constraints On Cyanomyophage Abundance In The Subtropical Pacific Ocean, Tiana Maria Pimentel

Masters Theses

Viruses are abundant in the world’s oceans and are thought to be important participants in marine biogeochemical cycling. Of these viruses, cyanophages are considered especially important because they infect and lyse cyanobacteria, which are some of the main primary producers in marine environments. Cyanophages are thought to influence the abundance and diversity of cyanobacterial populations and impart significant mortality, thereby affecting primary productivity and microbial community structure. Despite their ecological relevance, little is known about how environmental factors shape cyanophage abundance and diversity over large temporal and spatial scales. To address this gap in knowledge, seawater samples were collected ...


Effect Of Prescribed Burning In The Forests Of Buffalo National River, Arkansas, Francis Ndar Onduso Dec 2013

Effect Of Prescribed Burning In The Forests Of Buffalo National River, Arkansas, Francis Ndar Onduso

Theses and Dissertations

Prescribed burning (also referred to as controlled or hazard reduction burning) refers to the use of fire under controlled conditions to achieve a desired end product or goal. However, the nature and magnitude of the changes that result from prescribed burning are still incompletely known, and this is especially true for the forests of the Ozarks of northern Arkansas. The overall objective of the research project described herein was to obtain the data necessary to develop a better understanding of these changes, particularly as they relate to the use of prescribed burning as a management technique in the Buffalo National ...


Genetic And Ecological Characterization Of Indigoidine Production By Phaeobacter Sp. Strain Y4i, William Nathan Cude Aug 2013

Genetic And Ecological Characterization Of Indigoidine Production By Phaeobacter Sp. Strain Y4i, William Nathan Cude

Doctoral Dissertations

The Roseobacter clade is a widely distributed, abundant, and biogeochemically active lineage of marine alpha-proteobacteria. Members of the Roseobacter lineage are prolific surface colonizers in marine coastal environments, and antimicrobial secondary metabolite production has been hypothesized to provide a competitive advantage in colonization. In this work, Phaeobacter sp. strain Y4I was found to produce the water soluble, blue pigment indigoidine via a nonribosomal peptide synthase-based biosynthetic pathway encoded by a novel series of genetically linked genes, termed igiBCDFE. Comparison of wildtype, non-pigmented, and hyper-pigmented Y4I insertional mutants demonstrated a perfect correlation between indigoidine production and the inhibition of Vibrio fischeri ...


The Effects Of Calcium Concentration And Food Levels On Daphnia, Fawn Goodberry Aug 2013

The Effects Of Calcium Concentration And Food Levels On Daphnia, Fawn Goodberry

Biology Theses

Many physiological processes of Daphnia are negatively affected at low calcium concentrations. The concentration of calcium within lake water influences how Daphnia populations will survive and reproduce in natural environments. An experiment was designed to test the effects of calcium concentration and food level on the growth and reproduction of a Daphnia hybrid. Daphnia pulex x Daphnia pulicaria were reared in a soft water medium at three calcium concentrations (2.5mg/L, 1.0mg/L, 0.50mg/L) and high and low food levels (5.6 x 105 and 5.6 x 104 cells of the algae Ankistrodesmus ...


Integrating, Developing, And Testing Methods To Generate More Cohesive Approaches To Biogeographic Inference, Mallory Elizabeth Eckstut May 2013

Integrating, Developing, And Testing Methods To Generate More Cohesive Approaches To Biogeographic Inference, Mallory Elizabeth Eckstut

UNLV Theses, Dissertations, Professional Papers, and Capstones

As a fundamental component of the developing discipline of conservation biogeography, broadscale analyses of biotic assembly and disassembly across multiple temporal and spatial scales provide an enhanced understanding of how geologic transformations and climate oscillations have shaped extant patterns of biodiversity. As with any scientific field, there are limitations in the case of biogeographic historical reconstructions. Historical reconstructions are only as robust as the theoretical underpinnings of the methods of reconstruction (including data collection, quality, analysis, and interpretation). Nevertheless, historical reconstructions of species distributions can help inform our understanding of how species respond to environmental change.

My dissertation takes a ...


Ecology Of Coyotes On The Valles Caldera National Preserve, New Mexico: Implications For Elk Calf Recruitment, Suzanne J. Gifford May 2013

Ecology Of Coyotes On The Valles Caldera National Preserve, New Mexico: Implications For Elk Calf Recruitment, Suzanne J. Gifford

All Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Valles Caldera National Preserve (VCNP) managers were concerned about low elk recruitment observed at the same time as an apparent increase in sightings of coyotes and observations of coyote predation on elk calves. The goal of this study was to describe coyotes’ ecological interactions with elk, particularly coyote diet and movements on the Valle Grande, a large grassland meadow in the southeastern portion of the VCNP.

We examined coyote diet by quantifying undigested remains of food items in coyote scats (feces). The most frequent taxa were rodents (montane voles and pocket gophers), elk (adult and calf), insects (grasshoppers and beetles ...


Roads And The Reproductive Ecology Of Hesperidanthus Suffrutescens, An Endangered Shrub, Matthew B. Lewis May 2013

Roads And The Reproductive Ecology Of Hesperidanthus Suffrutescens, An Endangered Shrub, Matthew B. Lewis

All Graduate Theses and Dissertations

I investigated the pollination ecology ofHesperidanthus suffrutescens, an endangered Utah shrub, as well as the effects that road dust and local plant density may have on successful reproduction. The breeding system study included four pollination treatments to determine the degree of self-compatibility. Flower visitors were collected and probable pollinators were identified. To determine the effects of road dust on reproduction, I measured dust deposition, plant size, and reproduction in plots of increasing distance from an unpaved road. I also measured dust effects on pollination success and stomatal conductance. I determined the number of individuals per plot and the relative isolation ...


Greater Sage-Grouse Habitat Selection And Use Patterns In Response To Vegetation Management Practices In Northwestern Utah, Stephanie E. Graham May 2013

Greater Sage-Grouse Habitat Selection And Use Patterns In Response To Vegetation Management Practices In Northwestern Utah, Stephanie E. Graham

All Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus; sage-grouse) currently occupy an estimated 56% of the potential range-wide pre-European settlement habitat. Population declines have been largely attributed to direct habitat loss and fragmentation related to anthropogenic activities that promote wildfires and the subsequent spread of invasive plants. Vegetation manipulations, including the seeding of plant species, such as forage kochia (Bassia prostrata), have been identified as potential strategies to mitigate the risk of wildfire and enhance sage-grouse habitat in areas at risk to wildfires. I evaluated the composition changes that occurred in a lower elevation sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) plant community within the Grouse Creek Watershed ...


The Effect Of Ph On The Metal Binding Capabilities Of Exopolymeric Substances From A Marine Benthic Diatom, Vanessa O'Donnell Apr 2013

The Effect Of Ph On The Metal Binding Capabilities Of Exopolymeric Substances From A Marine Benthic Diatom, Vanessa O'Donnell

All Theses And Dissertations

The marine sediment-water interface is a dynamic microenvironment containing diatoms, which produce exopolymeric substance (EPS). EPS has various functions for individual cells and for marine ecosystems. EPS substance is a species-specific composition that has strong absorptive qualities and is able to bind metals from even a very dilute aqueous solution. As industrially derived metals tend to accumulate in marine mudflats, where diatoms are the major EPS producing organisms, it is important to determine how marine benthic diatom EPS will bind with metals. To address the metal binding properties of diatom EPS, Cylindrotheca closteriums’ EPS was isolated by tangential flow filtration ...


Biology And Ecology Of Glyphosate-Resistant Giant Ragweed, Kabelo Segobye Jan 2013

Biology And Ecology Of Glyphosate-Resistant Giant Ragweed, Kabelo Segobye

Open Access Theses

Giant ragweed (Ambrosia trifida L.) is a competitive annual plant found in disturbed landscapes and is the most troublesome weed in Indiana and the US Corn Belt. It is one of the most common and problematic weeds in corn and soybean production. The introduction of herbicide glyphosate, N-(phosphonomethyl) glycine in early 1970's provided farmers with a better and low-cost tool to control weeds. The use of glyphosate drastically increased after the development of glyphosate resistant agronomic crops in 1996 and was use as a post-emergence selective herbicide. This led to overreliance and repeated use of glyphosate for weed ...


Quantifying Carbon Allocation To Mycorrhizal Fungi By Temperate Forest Tree Species Across A Nitrogen Availability Gradient, Shersingh Joseph Tumber-Davila Jan 2013

Quantifying Carbon Allocation To Mycorrhizal Fungi By Temperate Forest Tree Species Across A Nitrogen Availability Gradient, Shersingh Joseph Tumber-Davila

Honors Theses and Capstones

Terrestrial ecosystems make up the largest carbon pool with a major portion of that being forests. With carbon being a major concern due to global climate change, being able to make accurate models is increasingly important. Studies have shown that trees may allocate up to 50% of their photosynthetically fixed carbon underground; however these values haven’t been accurately quantified and underground carbon allocation has been historically overlooked. Mycorrhizal fungi may be a large portion of underground carbon allocation, as they have a symbiotic relationship with trees where they provide the plant with water and nutrients in return for sugars ...


Likely Successors Of Ash Species In Response To The Emerald Ash Borer In Ohio Forests, Brian Michael Good Jan 2013

Likely Successors Of Ash Species In Response To The Emerald Ash Borer In Ohio Forests, Brian Michael Good

Browse all Theses and Dissertations

Invasive species have the capability to alter landscapes and change the composition of a forest in a very short time. The recent invasive pest, Agrilus planipennis, emerald ash borer, was unintentionally introduced to the United States via ship route to Michigan. The pest attacks and kills all five native ash species in Ohio. This study focused on an area in west central Ohio not yet affected by the borer. Ash centered plots were used to record all species and sizes (diameter at breast height) within a 5m radius of a central ash tree. Plots ranged in topography and all five ...


Family Matters: An Analysis Of Genetic Relatedness Of Tetraclita Rubescens (The Pink Volcano Barnacle) Over Several Spatial Scales At Monterey And Bodega Bay, California, Kelly N. Chang Jan 2013

Family Matters: An Analysis Of Genetic Relatedness Of Tetraclita Rubescens (The Pink Volcano Barnacle) Over Several Spatial Scales At Monterey And Bodega Bay, California, Kelly N. Chang

Scripps Senior Theses

Inbreeding involves the mating of closely related individuals at a higher frequency than at random; this can decrease the average fitness of populations and individuals by reducing the presence of heterozygotes and augmenting the expression of deleterious genes. Since marine invertebrates exhibit widespread dispersal, their potential for inbreeding is often disregarded. The adult sessile state of barnacles creates the potential for inbreeding as a result of necessary copulation between neighboring individuals. Depending on the degree of mixing that occurs during dispersal, closely related individuals or siblings may settle in close proximity, generating the possibility of kin aggregation and consequent inbreeding ...


Modeling Approaches, Physiological Responses, And Climate Change: How Good Is "Good Enough?", Nicole Kish Jan 2013

Modeling Approaches, Physiological Responses, And Climate Change: How Good Is "Good Enough?", Nicole Kish

Theses and Dissertations

Predicting spatial and temporal patterns in the responses of organisms and ecosystems to climate change has emerged as a major focus of macrophysiological research, with much work centered on the impacts of temperature. A potential difficulty lies in the observation that measures of 'habitat' such as air, land and sea surface temperature often differ greatly from the body temperature actually experienced by organisms, as the latter drives reproduction and survival. As a result, it is unclear how often these simple measurements of habitat are 'good enough' for predicting physiological stress in the field, and when more complicated methods are needed ...


Activity Patterns And Spatial Resource Selection Of The Eastern Garter Snake (Thamnophis Sirtalis Sirtalis), Matthew Gregory Most Jan 2013

Activity Patterns And Spatial Resource Selection Of The Eastern Garter Snake (Thamnophis Sirtalis Sirtalis), Matthew Gregory Most

Master's Theses

Snake species usually exhibit seasonal variations in activity patterns, home-range size and the use of respective habitat. Using mark-recapture protocols I marked 96 individual Thamnophis sirtalis sirtalis specimens in Lake Forest, IL to determine the independent variables that best explained habitat selection in a population of Eastern Garter Snakes (T. s. sirtalis). Specifically, I focused on the relationship between seasonal movement and home range size of male and female garter snakes. I analyzed the habitat preferences and spatial ecology of Eastern Garter Snakes during the 2011 sampling season and modeled the relationship between preferred or avoided habitat, in conjunction with ...


A Study Of The Spatial Dynamics Of Some Introduced Avian Species In The Southwest Region Of Western Australia, Desiree L. Moon Jan 2013

A Study Of The Spatial Dynamics Of Some Introduced Avian Species In The Southwest Region Of Western Australia, Desiree L. Moon

Theses: Doctorates and Masters

The Southwest region of Western Australia is a recognised ‘biodiversity hotspot’, as it possesses high levels of biodiversity and endemism; it also holds a number of species threatened by habitat loss. The arrival of Europeans in the region wrought major changes on the natural landscape. Extensive tracts of bushland were cleared for housing, infrastructure, forestry, farming, and mining. Another challenge to regional biodiversity was the spread of exotic plants and animals (including birds); the latter provide the focus for the present study. The research examines four bird species that colonised the Southwest region following European settlement: Australian White Ibis (Threskiornis ...