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Full-Text Articles in Life Sciences

Assessing Populations Of Eastern Brook Trout (Salvelinus Fontinalis) Above And Below Waterfalls In Mountain Streams Of Virginia, Hannah Eisemann Macmillan May 2019

Assessing Populations Of Eastern Brook Trout (Salvelinus Fontinalis) Above And Below Waterfalls In Mountain Streams Of Virginia, Hannah Eisemann Macmillan

Masters Theses

Anthropogenically driven factors, such as increasing temperature and sediment in valley streams, acidification of mountain streams, and the introduction of non-native trout, are restricting habitat suitable for healthy populations of eastern brook trout (Salvelinus fontinalis) throughout their native Appalachian range. Brook trout are important as predators of insects in mountain streams and as a favorite of anglers. It is crucial that remaining populations in sustainable habitats be identified and preserved. Waterfalls are geologic knickpoints preventing base-level lowering that create unique, stable landscapes above them, which may alleviate the temperature-productivity/acidity “habitat squeeze” for populations of brook trout and could serve ...


Effective Population Size, Demography, And Viability Of Eastern Massasaugas (Sistrurus Catenatus) In Southwest Michigan, Danielle R. Bradke May 2017

Effective Population Size, Demography, And Viability Of Eastern Massasaugas (Sistrurus Catenatus) In Southwest Michigan, Danielle R. Bradke

Masters Theses

As humans increasingly exploit natural areas, wildlife populations face a growing number of threats that often result in population decline and isolation. Small, isolated populations are vulnerable to extirpation due to both genetic and demographic factors. Yet, low detectability of many imperiled species often precludes the collection of population-level data important for assessing population viability and implementing successful conservation. The eastern massasauga (Sistrurus catenatus) is a cryptic pitviper that has been extirpated throughout much of its historic range due to agricultural conversion of wetland habitat and other synergistic threats. Consequently, this species is federally listed as threatened in both the ...


Essays On Protected Area Size: Effects On Ecological And Economic Effectiveness, Kristen Marie Thiel May 2017

Essays On Protected Area Size: Effects On Ecological And Economic Effectiveness, Kristen Marie Thiel

Masters Theses

Faced with continuing threats to biodiversity, governments are increasingly seeking to expand protected areas. Financial resources are limited, which often spurs conservation planners to prioritize locations for future protection. Thus, prioritization of protected areas is increasingly being evaluated based on the return on investment (ROI) they offer. This thesis consists of two essays analyzing the land acquisitions made by the world’s largest conservation organization, The Nature Conservancy (TNC). In the first essay, entitled “Effects of Protected Area Size on Conservation Return on Investment,” the increase in effective mesh size per dollar invested to acquire a parcel was greater for ...


A Mixed-Methods Study On Female Landowner Estate Planning Objectives, Rebekah Zimmerer Jan 2017

A Mixed-Methods Study On Female Landowner Estate Planning Objectives, Rebekah Zimmerer

Masters Theses

The majority of the forested land in New England is owned by private landowners, a large number of whom are at or above retirement age. In the coming decades these landowners are going to be making decisions about what happens to their land once they no longer own it. Female landowners specifically play a critical role in the long-term planning and decision-making process. Women generally have a longer life expectancy than men and assess their level of confidence and financial stability in ways that differ from men. This difference in perception influences the decisions they make about their land. Despite ...


Factors Affecting Habitat Quality For Wintering Wood Thrushes In A Coffee Growing Region In Honduras, Brett A. Bailey Jan 2016

Factors Affecting Habitat Quality For Wintering Wood Thrushes In A Coffee Growing Region In Honduras, Brett A. Bailey

Masters Theses

Amongst the diversity of taxa that occur in the Neotropics, 200 migratory bird species that breed in temperate North America can be found. Many of these populations have seen significant declines since the 1960s. The Wood Thrush, Hylocichla mustelina, is one such species. Shade coffee and other agroforestry practices show potential for benefiting migratory species, but the quality of coffee habitat and optimal habitat characteristics for Wood Thrushes remain unknown.

I surveyed a spatially complex, agricultural landscape in Honduras outside the recognized winter range of the Wood Thrush and radio-tagged 46 individuals within rustic coffee farms during the winters of ...


Using Capture-Mark-Recapture Techniques To Estimate Detection Probabilities & Fidelity Of Expression For The Critically Endangered James Spinymussel (Pleurobema Collina)., Alaina C. Esposito May 2015

Using Capture-Mark-Recapture Techniques To Estimate Detection Probabilities & Fidelity Of Expression For The Critically Endangered James Spinymussel (Pleurobema Collina)., Alaina C. Esposito

Masters Theses

The critically endangered James Spinymussel (Pleurobema collina) is a species of freshwater mussel endemic to Virginia’s James and Dan River basins. In the last 20 years, P. collina has experienced a substantial decline in numbers and currently occupies approximately 10% of its original habitat; however, little information is known about this species to assist in conservation. A 230-meter reach of transitional habitat in Swift Run was selected for repeat observations to estimate detection probabilities using a Capture-Mark-Recapture framework. In June 2014, visual scouting began to locate and tag P. collina (including other mussels in the community) with PIT tags ...


Historical Demography And Dispersal Patterns In The Eastern Pipistrelle Bat (Perimyotis Subflavus), Alynn M. Martin Aug 2014

Historical Demography And Dispersal Patterns In The Eastern Pipistrelle Bat (Perimyotis Subflavus), Alynn M. Martin

Masters Theses

The recent emergence of threats to North American bat conservation has prompted increased population genetics research on high risk species. The eastern pipistrelle bat is affected by both white-nose syndrome and wind turbine mortality. However, little work has been done regarding the population structure and effective population size of this species. Using the HVI region of the mitochondria and eight microsatellite loci, I analyzed male and female structure across the sample range of P. subflavus and estimated the effective population size of their populations. Pairwise FST values indicate that there is one panmictic population based on microsatellite data, while ...


Producers Willingness To Adopt A Prescribed Grazing System East Of The 100th Meridian, Caroline Elizabeth Holt Dec 2013

Producers Willingness To Adopt A Prescribed Grazing System East Of The 100th Meridian, Caroline Elizabeth Holt

Masters Theses

With the climate change concerns facing the United States, the contributions of the beef industry to greenhouse gasses are difficult to overlook. The agriculture industry is estimated to be the largest producer of methane emissions in the United States, and within agriculture, livestock are the largest contributor with cattle producing 73 percent of the methane emissions from all livestock (Johnson and Johnson 1995).

This thesis focuses on factors influencing beef cattle producers’ east of the 100th meridian interest in adopting prescribed grazing; including how a government cost share system could enhance adoption. Information was obtained for the study through a ...


Pelagic Larval Duration Links Life History Traits And Species Persistence In Darters (Percidae: Etheostomatinae), Morgan Jessica Douglas Aug 2013

Pelagic Larval Duration Links Life History Traits And Species Persistence In Darters (Percidae: Etheostomatinae), Morgan Jessica Douglas

Masters Theses

Pelagic larval duration (PLD) likely influences evolutionary processes including dispersal, genetic connectivity, and extinction in aquatic organisms. PLD has been well studied in marine systems, but very few freshwater species have been studied. Darters are a diverse group of freshwater North American fish with available information on the length of this stage from propagation efforts. There is surprising variation in the length of this stage ranging from 0 to 60 days. By compiling information from Conservations Fisheries, Inc. (Knoxville, TN) and the literature, we were able to make comparisons between the PLD of 23 species and other life history characteristics ...


Probiotic Bioaugmentation Of An Anti-Bd Bacteria, Janthinobacterium Lividum, On The Amphibian, Notophthalmus Viridescens: Transmission Efficacy And Persistence Of The Probiotic On The Host And Non-Target Effects Of Probiotic Addition On Ecosystem Components, Molly Bletz May 2013

Probiotic Bioaugmentation Of An Anti-Bd Bacteria, Janthinobacterium Lividum, On The Amphibian, Notophthalmus Viridescens: Transmission Efficacy And Persistence Of The Probiotic On The Host And Non-Target Effects Of Probiotic Addition On Ecosystem Components, Molly Bletz

Masters Theses

Amphibians worldwide are threatened by the fungal disease chytridiomycosis, caused by the skin pathogen Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis. Mutualistic skin bacteria are a critical element in amphibians’ defenses against chytridiomycosis. Probiotic bioaugmentation of beneficial, anti-Bd bacteria on amphibians is a potential conservation strategies. Outdoor experimental ponds were used to investigate transmission efficacy and persistence of the anti-Bd bacteria, Janthinobacterium lividum, on the amphibian, Notophthalmus viridescens. More specifically, this research investigated whether a short-term individual bath, environmental bioaugmentation, or both are necessary to afford transmission and persistence of J. lividum on N. viridescens. Additionally, this research investigated the effectiveness of these different probiotic ...