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Full-Text Articles in Life Sciences

Movement Patterns And Catch-And-Release Impacts Of Striped Bass In A Tidal Coastal Embayment In Massachusetts, Heather M. Tyrrell Jan 2014

Movement Patterns And Catch-And-Release Impacts Of Striped Bass In A Tidal Coastal Embayment In Massachusetts, Heather M. Tyrrell

Masters Theses 1911 - February 2014

An investigation into the spatial ecology and effects of catch-and-release angling on the physiology and behavior of striped bass was conducted. Fine-scale behavior was assessed by tagging fish with acoustic transmitters equipped with pressure and tri-axial accelerometer sensors and tracking them within a fixed array (n=34 receivers) in a Massachusetts estuary. Activity space changed significantly over the course of the season and increased with water temperature. Striped bass most frequently exhibited low levels of locomotory activity representing 67% of total activity measurements, with occasional high activity and burst swimming, often within the upper 3 m of the water column ...


An Investigation Of Human-Error Rates In Wildlife Photographic Identification; Implications For The Use Of Citizen Scientists, Megan Chesser Jan 2012

An Investigation Of Human-Error Rates In Wildlife Photographic Identification; Implications For The Use Of Citizen Scientists, Megan Chesser

Masters Theses 1911 - February 2014

Rapid technological advancements in digital cameras and widespread public access to the internet have inspired many researchers to consider alternative methods for collecting, analyzing, and distributing scientific data. Two emerging fields of study that have capitalized on these developments are “citizen science” and photo-id in wildlife capture-mark-recapture (CMR) studies. Both approaches offer unprecedented flexibility and potential for acquiring previously inconceivable datasets, yet both remain dependent on data collection by human observers. The absence of rigorous assessment of observer error rates causes many scientists to resist citizen science altogether or to fail to incorporate citizen-collected data into ecological analyses. This same ...


Evaluating The Effectiveness Of Road Passage Structures For Freshwater Turtles In Massachusetts, David J. Paulson Jan 2010

Evaluating The Effectiveness Of Road Passage Structures For Freshwater Turtles In Massachusetts, David J. Paulson

Masters Theses 1911 - February 2014

Roads are long linear features on the landscape that impact wildlife and their habitats. Among all forms of wildlife turtles are one of the most negatively affected by roads. Wildlife biologists and civil engineers have developed and implemented road design measures to mitigate the negative effects associated with roads. One common approach used to reduce road mortality and to facilitate movement of turtles is to construct a road mitigation system. There are currently 28 road mitigation systems for wildlife in Massachusetts, of which 14 were specifically built for turtles. We identified all known systems in Massachusetts and collected site and ...


Spatial Variation And Tradeoffs In Species Interactions, Holly L. Bernardo Jan 2010

Spatial Variation And Tradeoffs In Species Interactions, Holly L. Bernardo

Masters Theses 1911 - February 2014

The geographic mosaic theory of coevolution predicts that spatial differences in species interactions result in a patchwork of evolutionary hot and cold spots across a landscape. We used horsenettle (Solanum carolinense L.), a perennial weed with a diverse insect community found in old fields and meadows, to examine local adaptation and resource-mediated selection. The goals of this study were to (1) determine the potential for a selection mosaic by identifying local adaptation through trait-interaction matching with herbivores, pollinations and plant competitors, and (2) determine the potential for indirect selection through resource allocation tradeoffs. The potential for local adaptation was determined ...


Conservation Implications Of A Marbled Salamander, Ambystoma Opacum, Metapopulation Model, Ethan B. Plunkett Jan 2009

Conservation Implications Of A Marbled Salamander, Ambystoma Opacum, Metapopulation Model, Ethan B. Plunkett

Masters Theses 1911 - February 2014

Amphibians are in decline globally and a significantly greater percentage of ambystomatid salamander species are in decline relative to other species; habitat loss contributes significantly to this decline. The goals of this thesis is to better understand extinction risk in a marbled salamander (ambystoma opacum) population and how forestry effects extinction risk. To achieve this goal we first estimated an important life history parameter (Chapter 1) then used a metapopulation model to estimate population viability and determine what aspects of their life history put them most at risk (Chapter 2) and finally predicted extinction risk in response to hypothetical forestry ...


Variation In Winter Estuarine Habitat Use By Bluefish In Northeastern Florida With Implications For Growth And Condition, John S. Murt Jan 2009

Variation In Winter Estuarine Habitat Use By Bluefish In Northeastern Florida With Implications For Growth And Condition, John S. Murt

Masters Theses 1911 - February 2014

Age and growth were determined from otoliths for 181 juvenile bluefish, Pomatomus saltatrix, collected using a variety of gear in northeast Florida during 2003 and 2005. Three distinct cohorts were identified recruiting to the near shore waters during spring, summer and fall. Growth rates were high regardless of cohort or season. To compare pre- and post-recruitment growth rates, models were fit to individual growth trajectories using change point analysis. Post-estuarine growth rates were generally higher. Growth rates and hatching times were within the range of those obtained in other bluefish studies conducted at higher latitudes. As this is the only ...


Evaluation Of Pre-Spawning Movements Of Anadromous Alewives In The Ipswich River Using Radiotelemetry, Holly J. Frank Jan 2009

Evaluation Of Pre-Spawning Movements Of Anadromous Alewives In The Ipswich River Using Radiotelemetry, Holly J. Frank

Masters Theses 1911 - February 2014

Conserving and restoring anadromous fish populations is an important research and management priority. For conservation to be effective, researchers must understand the behavior of the fish they seek to restore. Telemetry has allowed researchers to understand the upstream migrations of these fish in freshwater, how migration patterns vary, and if there is a relationship between behavior and environmental variables. In the northeastern United States, alewife (Alosa pseudoharengus), one of two species collectively referred to as river herring, has historically been an important component of coastal rivers. However, populations of these fish have experienced recent declines, and a commonly used method ...


Spatial And Temporal Dynamics Of Land Use Impacts On Water Quality In Watershed Systems, Olga Tsvetkova Jan 2007

Spatial And Temporal Dynamics Of Land Use Impacts On Water Quality In Watershed Systems, Olga Tsvetkova

Masters Theses 1911 - February 2014

ABSTRACT SPATIAL AND TEMPORAL DYNAMICS OF LAND USE IMPACTS ON WATER QUALITY IN WATERSHED SYSTEMS SEPTEMBER 2007 OLGA TSVETKOVA, B.S., NOVGOROD STATE UNIVERSITY, RUSSIA M.S., UNIVERSITY OF MASSACHUSETTS AMHERST Directed by: Professor Timothy O. Randhir Predicting land use change and assessing watershed tradeoffs between the watershed system components through system simulation helps to determine future nutrient and sediment load reductions needed to obtain a particular water quality standard. This also helps to examine the tradeoffs among nutrient and sediment load reductions that achieve the same water quality objective. Tradeoff assessment is a useful tool to meet agricultural and ...