Open Access. Powered by Scholars. Published by Universities.®

Life Sciences Commons

Open Access. Powered by Scholars. Published by Universities.®

PDF

Theses/Dissertations

California

Discipline
Institution
Publication Year
Publication

Articles 1 - 30 of 43

Full-Text Articles in Life Sciences

Monitoring Desert Ungulates Via Fecal Dna-Based Capture Recapture, Stephen S. Pfeiler May 2019

Monitoring Desert Ungulates Via Fecal Dna-Based Capture Recapture, Stephen S. Pfeiler

All Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Estimates of population abundance and survival are critical for effective wildlife management. Obtaining estimates of these kind using traditional wildlife monitoring techniques (i.e. ground and aerial surveys) has proven to be difficult, especially for species that are wide ranging and exist in small, patchily distributed populations.

My objective was to implement fecal DNA-based capture-recapture surveys to estimate abundance and survival of two different ungulate populations that inhabit the deserts of southeastern California. I also compared fecal DNA-based capture-recapture techniques to traditional methods by evaluating the costs and precision associated with both methods. Using artificial water sources as focal sampling ...


The Impacts Of Episodic Floods, Droughts, Turbidites On Organic Carbon Burial Over The Past 2,000 Years In The Santa Barbara Basin, California, Caitlyn Sarno Apr 2019

The Impacts Of Episodic Floods, Droughts, Turbidites On Organic Carbon Burial Over The Past 2,000 Years In The Santa Barbara Basin, California, Caitlyn Sarno

Theses and Dissertations

Over the past several millennia, Southern California has experienced episodic climate that have influenced the magnitude and composition of terrestrial and marine material that ultimately reaches ocean sediments. Here, we analyze elemental concentrations, stable isotopes, and n-alkane lipids as tracers of terrestrial and marine sources in drought, turbidite, and flood horizons from a well-dated sediment core in the Santa Barbara Basin (SBB) that spans the last 2,000 years. Stable isotopes (δ13C and δ15N), indicate that more terrestrial organic carbon (OC) input occurred during floods relative to non-event periods, while bulk C/N ratios remained relatively constant (~10). Long chain ...


Evaluation Of Restoration Techniques And Management Practices Of Tule Pertaining To Eco-Cultural Use, Irene A. Vasquez Jan 2019

Evaluation Of Restoration Techniques And Management Practices Of Tule Pertaining To Eco-Cultural Use, Irene A. Vasquez

Theses and projects

Tule (Schoenoplectus sp.) is a native plant commonly used by California tribes and Indigenous people throughout the world (Macía & Balslev 2000). Ecological, social and regulatory threats to its use in contemporary Indigenous culture highlight major issues concerning natural resource management. My ancestral homeland, what is now Yosemite National Park, stands as a figurehead in the intersection of land management and Indigenous peoples. An important element of Traditional Ecological Management (TEM) for quality basketry materials is prescribed fire, an element western science is increasingly acknowledging for creating a more biodiverse and heterogeneous landscape. This research was conducted in Mariposa and Colusa ...


Competition, Climate, And Drought Effects On Tree Growth In An Encroached Oak Woodland In Northern California, Jill J. Beckmann Jan 2019

Competition, Climate, And Drought Effects On Tree Growth In An Encroached Oak Woodland In Northern California, Jill J. Beckmann

Theses and projects

Oregon white oak (Quercus garryana Douglas ex Hook.) is experiencing increasing competition from Douglas fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii (Mirb.) Franco) across its range at the same time as climate models are predicting increasing climate variability, including drought. Management recommendations that consider competition dynamics between these species under a changing climate are therefore needed for oak woodlands, but we do not currently understand the combined effects of competition, climate, and drought in this ecosystem. This research examines radial tree growth and drought response in Oregon white oak and Douglas fir in an encroached oak woodland near Kneeland, California. Stem maps of local ...


Density And Distribution Of Piscivorous Fishes In The Sacramento – San Joaquin Delta, Christopher M. Loomis Jan 2019

Density And Distribution Of Piscivorous Fishes In The Sacramento – San Joaquin Delta, Christopher M. Loomis

Theses and projects

Predatory fishes, including numerous introduced species, are common to the Sacramento – San Joaquin Delta, but abundance data for most species is insufficient to determine the Delta-wide distribution and ecological impacts of these species. Predatory fishes (e.g. Striped Bass, Largemouth Bass have long been suspected of contributing to the decline of native species, including salmonids, but data has been insufficient to investigate this hypothesis. In this study, I present a novel method to assess predator fish populations across the southern Delta using DIDSON acoustic cameras and analyze the environmental associations that form the landscape and fine-scale distribution of predatory fishes ...


Management Recommendations For Ecological Restoration On The Little River Parcel, Maya Sady Partain, Garitt Mathews Jan 2019

Management Recommendations For Ecological Restoration On The Little River Parcel, Maya Sady Partain, Garitt Mathews

Environmental Science & Management Senior Capstones

Ecological restoration is an important aspect of land management. Data collection and ongoing monitoring help inform restoration decisions and determine their effectiveness. In this project, we followed a monitoring protocol provided by the Trinidad Coastal Land Trust to assess the 2019 status of their Little River parcel, a fifteen-acre area near the mouth of Little River in Trinidad, California. We performed a site analysis of invasive plant species and recorded their extent and location, as well as noting other observations of the ecology, topography, and biology of the site. After making our observations, we recommended land management methods woven together ...


Overwinter Survival And Movement Of Juvenile Coho Salmon (Oncorhynchus Kisutch) In Relation To Large Woody Debris And Low-Velocity Habitat In Northern California Streams, John D. Deibner-Hanson Jan 2019

Overwinter Survival And Movement Of Juvenile Coho Salmon (Oncorhynchus Kisutch) In Relation To Large Woody Debris And Low-Velocity Habitat In Northern California Streams, John D. Deibner-Hanson

Theses and projects

Some studies suggest that Coho Salmon populations are limited by overwinter survival as a result of insufficient winter habitat. While many small-scale projects aim to define reach and basin-level habitat requirements for Coho Salmon, large-scale studies that assess multiple independent populations remain few. For my research, I quantified large woody debris (LWD) by volume and low-velocity rearing habitat (LVH) as percent area in three coastal watersheds of similar size in northern California to untangle the relationships between Coho Salmon overwinter survival, emigration timing and specific winter habitats. I used mark-recapture techniques with PIT tags to formulate Cormack-Jolly-Seber models for each ...


Drought And Coyotes Mediate The Relationship Between Mesopredators And Human Disturbance In California, Molly K. Parren Jan 2019

Drought And Coyotes Mediate The Relationship Between Mesopredators And Human Disturbance In California, Molly K. Parren

Theses and projects

Mesopredators in California are facing two major changes to their ecosystem: drought and the expansion of human disturbance. As a result, mesopredators are likely shifting their habitat use as well as their interspecies interactions to balance resource needs and risk-taking on the landscape. In response to severe drought, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife deployed 585 camera traps throughout the Mojave Desert and Central Valley documenting mammalian mesopredator presence in a drought year (2016) and a post-drought year (2017). The objectives of this study were to examine spatial patterns of mesopredator occurrence and co-occurrence with a dominant predator, the ...


A Time- And State-Based Approach To Estimate Winter Movement And Survival Of Juvenile Coho Salmon (Oncorhynchus Kisutch) In Freshwater Creek, California, Nicholas Paul Van Vleet Jan 2019

A Time- And State-Based Approach To Estimate Winter Movement And Survival Of Juvenile Coho Salmon (Oncorhynchus Kisutch) In Freshwater Creek, California, Nicholas Paul Van Vleet

Theses and projects

Accounting for life history diversity and overwinter survival of juvenile Coho Salmon is important to inform restoration and recovery efforts for this threatened species. Multiple seaward migration patterns of Coho Salmon have been identified, including spring fry migrants, fall and winter parr migrants, and spring smolt migrants. Previous studies have indicated that spring smolt migrants have low overwinter survival rates while they are rearing in upstream habitats, suggesting that freshwater overwinter survival may be one factor that limits smolt production. However, previous research did not account for the early emigration of fall and winter parr migrants from the study area ...


Hunting Habitat Use And Selection Patterns Of Barn Owl (Tyto Alba) In The Urban-Agricultural Setting Of A Prominent Wine Grape Growing Region Of California, Xeronimo A. Castaneda Jan 2018

Hunting Habitat Use And Selection Patterns Of Barn Owl (Tyto Alba) In The Urban-Agricultural Setting Of A Prominent Wine Grape Growing Region Of California, Xeronimo A. Castaneda

Theses and projects

Large scale conversion of uncultivated land to agriculture threatens wildlife and can diminish ecosystem services provided by nature. Understanding how wildlife provision ecosystem services may incentivize wildlife conservation in agricultural landscapes. Attracting barn owls (Tyto alba) to nest on farms for pest management has been documented worldwide, but has not been thoroughly evaluated in vineyard agroecosystems. Napa Valley, California is a renowned winegrape growing region, and viticulturists encourage barn owl occupancy to help minimize plant damage from pocket gophers (Thomomys bottae) and voles (Microtus spp.). This study aimed to establish a basis for revealing the abilities of a predator to ...


Rangewide Tidewater Goby Occupancy Survey Using Environmental Dna, Michael Sutter Jan 2018

Rangewide Tidewater Goby Occupancy Survey Using Environmental Dna, Michael Sutter

Theses and projects

Rangewide monitoring of fish species is critical for determining status and trends in abundance and distribution; however, implementations of large-scale distribution surveys have generally been constrained by time and cost. This study uses environmental DNA (eDNA) to monitor the presence or absence of two endangered tidewater goby species, the northern tidewater goby (Eucyclogobius newberryi) and the southern tidewater goby (Eucyclogobius kristinae), across their combined geographic range that encompasses the entire California coast (1,350 km).A multi-scale occupancy model designed specifically for eDNA methods was used to account for imperfect detection and to estimate true site occupancy. A total of ...


Adapting To The Changing Tide: An Evaluation Of California’S Drought Policies And Future Mitigation Strategies, Lauren Dorsey Jan 2018

Adapting To The Changing Tide: An Evaluation Of California’S Drought Policies And Future Mitigation Strategies, Lauren Dorsey

CMC Senior Theses

California endured an extreme and prolonged drought from 2012 until the winter of 2017, offering a fascinating yet tragic example of how drought impacts lives. Despite this recent and stark phenomenon, there is surprisingly little information about its effects and implications. This thesis aims to lessen this knowledge gap by asking how severe the drought was, how well the state responded, and what policies would increase California’s water security. It answers these questions by exploring the Golden State’s long and complicated water management history, which is necessary to understand the current drought policy framework; then, it collects the ...


Natural And Anthropogenic Drivers Of Tree Evolutionary Dynamics, Brandon M. Lind Jan 2018

Natural And Anthropogenic Drivers Of Tree Evolutionary Dynamics, Brandon M. Lind

Theses and Dissertations

Species of trees inhabit diverse and heterogeneous environments, and often play important ecological roles in such communities. As a result of their vast ecological breadth, trees have become adapted to various environmental pressures. In this dissertation I examine various environmental factors that drive evolutionary dynamics in threePinusspecies in California and Nevada, USA. In chapter two, I assess the role of management influence of thinning, fire, and their interaction on fine-scale gene flow within fire-suppressed populations of Pinus lambertiana, a historically dominant and ecologically important member of mixed-conifer forests of the Sierra Nevada, California. Here, I find evidence that ...


Pollinator Power: Supporting Bees Through Ecoregion Specific Planting Guides, Maya Thomas Jan 2018

Pollinator Power: Supporting Bees Through Ecoregion Specific Planting Guides, Maya Thomas

Scripps Senior Theses

The pollination of flowering crops by bees is an invaluable ecosystem service that supports biodiversity and much of the global agricultural system. Pollinators move pollen between the male structures of a plant to the female structures of a plant of the same species. This fertilizes the female plant, which then produces the next generation. This process also provides the pollinator with the nectar or pollen it needs to survive. While some plants transfer pollen through different means, the majority of plants need help from pollinators to reproduce. Depending on the means of pollination, pollination can be classified as abiotic or ...


The Bee Fauna Of The Horse Mountain And Grouse Mountain Region, Humboldt County, California, Carrie Lopez Jan 2017

The Bee Fauna Of The Horse Mountain And Grouse Mountain Region, Humboldt County, California, Carrie Lopez

Theses and projects

Recent concerns about the ecological well-being of bee communities in California and elsewhere have increased the need for monitoring programs and studies that evaluate the impact of habitat loss and alteration on bee diversity and abundance. Such studies depend critically on the expertise of people trained in taxonomy, but their numbers have declined in recent years. My primary goal was to gain a comprehensive first-hand experience with bee identification by documenting the fauna of a previously unstudied area in the mountains of northwestern California and by writing an identification key, intended for dedicated non-specialists, to the area’s 35 species ...


The Response Of A Predatory Fish, Ophiodon Elongatus, To A Marine Protected Area: Variation In Diet, Catch Rates, And Size Composition, Eric S. Anderson Dec 2016

The Response Of A Predatory Fish, Ophiodon Elongatus, To A Marine Protected Area: Variation In Diet, Catch Rates, And Size Composition, Eric S. Anderson

Master's Theses and Project Reports

Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) are a management tool used to protect and sustain many ecologically and economically important fish species from overexploitation by recreational and commercial fishing. Lingcod (Ophiodon elongatus) and some of its prey species, such as rockfish (Sebastes spp.), are species that are protected from fishing in some California MPAs. Lingcod is an apex predator that consumes a variety of fish and invertebrate species. In this study, I sought to assess the effect of an MPA on the abundance, size and diet of Lingcod. I hypothesized that Lingcod in a no-take MPA would be more abundant and larger ...


Policy Options To Mitigate Cigarette Filter Litter In California, Max Wechsler May 2016

Policy Options To Mitigate Cigarette Filter Litter In California, Max Wechsler

Master's Projects and Capstones

Approximately 16.2 billion cellulose acetate cigarette filters are littered in California annually. Cigarette filter litter (CFL) creates an annual financial burden of over $1.27 billion for California. CFL also poses unquantifiable damages to human and environmental health in the form of ingestion, toxicity, formation into microplastics, and quality of life degradation. These costs and damages warrant the adoption of policy measures in order to mitigate CFL. Cigarette taxes and fees raise government revenue, but they are politically challenging due to California Proposition 26. Locational smoking bans encourage anti-smoking cultural norms and may decrease consumption, although indoor smoking bans ...


Early Seral Mixed-Conifer Forest Structure And Composition Following A Wildfire Reburn In The Sierra Nevada, Erin Alvey Jan 2016

Early Seral Mixed-Conifer Forest Structure And Composition Following A Wildfire Reburn In The Sierra Nevada, Erin Alvey

Theses and projects

Before the era of modern fire suppression, California’s northern Sierra Nevada mixed-conifer and yellow pine forests were self-regulating; recurring short-interval, low-mixed severity wildfires maintained forest structure and composition, which in turn exerted bottom-up controls on subsequent wildfires. As a result of fire suppression, and coupled with the effects of climate warming and other anthropogenic disturbances, the fundamental structure of mixed-conifer and yellow pine forests has shifted. Wildfires may now be increasing in size, severity, and frequency across western North America. However, little is known about the post-fire impacts of repeat wildfire on a forest after a long era of ...


Seasonal Habitat Selection Of The North American Porcupine (Erethizon Dorsatum) In A Coastal Dune Forest, Cara L. Appel Jan 2016

Seasonal Habitat Selection Of The North American Porcupine (Erethizon Dorsatum) In A Coastal Dune Forest, Cara L. Appel

Theses and projects

Wildlife-habitat relationship studies are important for understanding the factors that determine where species occur in space and time. Habitat selection by generalist species should be studied on fine spatial and temporal scales to avoid masking important differences between seasons, localities, or orders of selection. I conducted the first study of habitat use and general ecology of North American porcupines (Erethizon dorsatum) in a coastal dune environment. Specifically, I assessed changes in body mass, home range size, and habitat selection in relation to the potential for seasonal nutritional and survival bottlenecks as reported elsewhere. Although they are considered generalists, porcupines have ...


Estimating Baseline Population Parameters Of Urban And Wildland Black Bear Populations Using A Dna-Based Capture -Mark-Recapture Approach In Mono County, California, Jonathan L. Fusaro May 2014

Estimating Baseline Population Parameters Of Urban And Wildland Black Bear Populations Using A Dna-Based Capture -Mark-Recapture Approach In Mono County, California, Jonathan L. Fusaro

All Graduate Theses and Dissertations

Prior to European settlement, black bear (Ursus americanus) were far less abundant in the state of California. Estimates from statewide harvest data indicate the California black bear population has tripled in the last 3 decades. Bears inhabit areas they formally never occurred (e.g., urban environments) and populations that were at historically low densities are now at high densities. Though harvest data are useful and widely used as an index for black bear population size and population demographics statewide, it lacks the ability to produce precise estimates of abundance and density at local scales or account for the numerous bears ...


Setting Up A Safety Program For California Dairies., Shelby Locke Mar 2014

Setting Up A Safety Program For California Dairies., Shelby Locke

Dairy Science

The purpose of this project was to take the best research for dairy safety in California and combine it in everyday terminology that the average dairy producer could understand. In today’s dairy industry, money is tight and decreasing costs is very important. By implementing a safety program that is in compliance with CAL/OSHA’s standards, injuries will decrease, saving the dairy producer money. This paper has highlighted the major topics for a new dairy to start their safety training program. It includes descriptions of the hazards, responsibilities for employers and employees and ways to prevent accidents from occurring ...


A Quantitative Analysis Of The Effect Of Cash-4-Grass Programs On Water Consumption, Cynthia Allen Jan 2014

A Quantitative Analysis Of The Effect Of Cash-4-Grass Programs On Water Consumption, Cynthia Allen

Walden Dissertations and Doctoral Studies

Water supplies in California are stretched to critical levels as a result of population growth, periodic drought, and climate change. The California legislature recognized that the best way to increase supply is to decrease demand so the Water Use Efficiency Senate Bill 7 (SBx7-7) was signed into law in 2009. The law requires water purveyors to reduce per capita water usage by 20% by the year 2020. To comply, water purveyors are searching for innovative ways to increase water conservation. A review of the literature has shown that many factors influence water consumption. However, the majority of household water consumption ...


Testing The Fertility And Allelopathic Abilities Of Arctotheca Prostrata (Salisb.) Britten (Asteraceae, Arctotideae), A South African Plant Species That Has Naturalized In California, Jordy Veit Jan 2014

Testing The Fertility And Allelopathic Abilities Of Arctotheca Prostrata (Salisb.) Britten (Asteraceae, Arctotideae), A South African Plant Species That Has Naturalized In California, Jordy Veit

All Theses, Dissertations, and Other Capstone Projects

Arctotheca prostrata is a perennial plant species native to South Africa that reproduces vegetatively by long runners. In South Africa it also reproduces sexually, producing fruits with fertile seeds. The species was brought to California to serve as a ground cover but fruits had not been reported. Historically, it has been said to be infertile. This study tested the fertility of A. prostrata in California by crossing plants from California with each other and with plants grown from imported South African seeds. Pollen viability was tested and morphological measures were made on heads, leaves, and pollen. Mean Californian and South ...


Common Core 4th Grade Environmental Science Lesson Plans For California Teachers, Gillian Schoenfeld Dec 2013

Common Core 4th Grade Environmental Science Lesson Plans For California Teachers, Gillian Schoenfeld

Natural Resources Management and Environmental Sciences

This project and its analyses were conducted to assist California fourth grade elementary school teachers in adjusting to teaching Common Core standards and science curriculum in their classrooms. The project included the creation of lesson plans, which could be utilized throughout the state of California.

As the Common Core standards, California’s Next Generation Science Standards for K- 12, were just proposed in June of 2013, these lesson plans would help teachers update their lessons and provide them materials and concepts of how to do so. These lessons provide higher-order thinking for students, which is the whole concept of the ...


Ichnology And Paleoecology Of The Jurassic Aztec Sandstone, Heather Marie Stoller Dec 2013

Ichnology And Paleoecology Of The Jurassic Aztec Sandstone, Heather Marie Stoller

UNLV Theses, Dissertations, Professional Papers, and Capstones

In this study I describe and interpret tracks and trackways of the Jurassic Aztec Sandstone of southern Nevada and southern California. This study involved mapping of all known tracks and trackways, including foot length, stride length, and trackway width. Photogrammetric data, collected by Bureau of Land Management scientists, were utilized for several trackways in Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area.

More than three hundred tracks belonging to five ichnotaxa were documented within the Aztec Sandstone, including about 165 tridactylGrallator, 250 tetradactyl (four-toed)Brasilichniumtracks, and 7 arthropod trackways ofOctopodichnusandPaleohelcura. Four of the five ichnotaxa were not previously reported from the Aztec ...


The Imperative Of Conserving California's Foothill Oak Woodlands, Lauren Phillips Dec 2013

The Imperative Of Conserving California's Foothill Oak Woodlands, Lauren Phillips

Social Sciences

No abstract provided.


Paleoecology Of Late Pleistocene Megaherbivores: Stable Isotope Reconstruction Of Environment, Climate, And Response, Aubrey Mae Bonde Aug 2013

Paleoecology Of Late Pleistocene Megaherbivores: Stable Isotope Reconstruction Of Environment, Climate, And Response, Aubrey Mae Bonde

UNLV Theses, Dissertations, Professional Papers, and Capstones

Late Pleistocene megaherbivore communities of the Pacific and Mountain West states of California and Nevada are under-analyzed in regard to ecological function (diet, mobility, niche partitioning, and range of ecological tolerance). Stable isotope analysis is a powerful tool that is known to recover primary paleodiet and paleoenvironmental information from biogenic materials, such as enamel and dentin. This dissertation explores the use of carbon and oxygen stable isotopes in Late Pleistocene (40-10 Ka) megaherbivore teeth to gain a better understanding of inter- and intra-specific behavior and reconstruct Late Pleistocene ecosystems of California and Nevada. Radiocarbon dates exist for most of the ...


The Invasion Of California Grasslands: Past, Present, And Future Implications, Danielle Simone Caziarc Jun 2012

The Invasion Of California Grasslands: Past, Present, And Future Implications, Danielle Simone Caziarc

Social Sciences

No abstract provided.


Seasonal Food Habits Of Burrowing Owls (Athene Cunicularia) In Human-Altered Landscapes, Carie Marie Wingert Jun 2012

Seasonal Food Habits Of Burrowing Owls (Athene Cunicularia) In Human-Altered Landscapes, Carie Marie Wingert

Master's Theses and Project Reports

In 2004, I initiated a year-long study to investigate the food habits of burrowing owls (Athene cunicularia). Burrowing owls have been found in a variety of human-altered landscapes; however, little is known about burrowing owl food habits in urban landscapes. Burrowing owl food habits during the non-breeding season are also largely undocumented, despite increasing concern over the survival of overwintering burrowing owls. Differences in prey consumption between reproductive and non-reproductive owls during the breeding season have not yet been examined. I collected pellets over a 12 month period at four study sites affected by different levels of human alteration in ...


Potential For Barn Owl As Rodent Biological Control In Central California Vineyards, Hannah Tillmann Mar 2012

Potential For Barn Owl As Rodent Biological Control In Central California Vineyards, Hannah Tillmann

Biological Sciences

The pocket gopher (Thomomys bottae) and voles (Microtus spp.) cause significant economic damage to vineyards. In response, many growers have taken steps to attract Barn Owls (Tyto alba) to their properties to help keep these rodent populations in check. This research project investigated Barn Owl consumption of pocket gophers and voles in Central California vineyards in order to assess the efficiency of this integrated pest management strategy. I collected a total of 715 owl pellets from five vineyard locations in Templeton and Paso Robles, California over an eight-month period during nesting and post-fledging seasons. I identified seven prey species within ...