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Full-Text Articles in Life Sciences

Recent Decline Of Lowland Populations Of The Western Gray Squirrel In The Los Angeles Area Of Southern California, Daniel S. Cooper, Alan Muchlinski Jul 2105

Recent Decline Of Lowland Populations Of The Western Gray Squirrel In The Los Angeles Area Of Southern California, Daniel S. Cooper, Alan Muchlinski

Bulletin of the Southern California Academy of Sciences

We provide an overview of the distribution of lowland and otherwise isolated populations of the western gray squirrel (Sciurus griseus) in the Los Angeles area of southern California, an area that has experienced a recent and ongoing invasion by the non-native eastern fox squirrel (Sciurus niger), an urban-adapted species introduced a century ago. Away from its strongholds in the western Santa Monica Mountains, San Gabriel Mountains, and Santa Ana Mountains, the western gray squirrel is resident locally in both the Santa Susana and the Verdugo Mountains, in Griffith Park, in low hills at the eastern periphery of the San Gabriel ...


A Review Of Orthochirus From Turkey, Iraq, And Iran (Khoozestan, Ilam, And Lorestan Provinces), With Descriptions Of Three New Species (Scorpiones: Buthidae), František Kovařík, Ersen A. Yağmur, Victor Fet, Fenik S. Hussen Feb 2019

A Review Of Orthochirus From Turkey, Iraq, And Iran (Khoozestan, Ilam, And Lorestan Provinces), With Descriptions Of Three New Species (Scorpiones: Buthidae), František Kovařík, Ersen A. Yağmur, Victor Fet, Fenik S. Hussen

Euscorpius

Three new species, Orthochirus fomichevi sp. n. from Turkey and Iraq, O. gantenbeini sp. n. from Iran (Khoozestan Province), and O. navidpouri sp. n. from Iran (Khoozestan and Lorestan Provinces) are described, compared with other Orthochirus species from the region, and fully illustrated with color photos. Lectotype of O. mesopotamicus Birula, 1918 stat. n. from Iran (Khoozestan Province) is designated. Emended diagnoses are given for O. iranus Kovařík, 2004, O. iraqus Kovařík, 2004, O. mesopotamicus Birula, 1918 stat. n., and O. zagrosensis Kovařík, 2004. A key and a distribution map are included.


Trypanothacus Gen. N., A New Genus Of Burrowing Scorpion From The Arabian Peninsula (Scorpiones: Buthidae), Graeme Lowe, František Kovařík, Mark Stockmann, František Šťáhlavský Feb 2019

Trypanothacus Gen. N., A New Genus Of Burrowing Scorpion From The Arabian Peninsula (Scorpiones: Buthidae), Graeme Lowe, František Kovařík, Mark Stockmann, František Šťáhlavský

Euscorpius

We define a new fossorial buthid genus Trypanothacus gen. n., similar to Buthacus Birula, 1908, differing primarily in telson shape, with a bulbous vesicle and aculeus shorter than the vesicle, and in heavier dentition on metasomal segments II–III and IV. The new genus includes two species: T. barnesi sp. n. from Oman and T. buettikeri (Hendrixson, 2006) comb. n. from Saudi Arabia, the latter transferred from Buthacus. We provide detailed illustrations of both species from preserved materials, and in vivo habitus and natural habitat are shown for T. barnesi sp. n.. Information is also provided on ecology and captive ...


Scorpions Of Iran (Arachnida, Scorpiones). Part X. Alborz, Markazi And Tehran Provinces With A Description Of Orthochirus Carinatus Sp. N. (Buthidae), Shahrokh Navidpour, František Kovařík, Michael Soleglad, Victor Fet Feb 2019

Scorpions Of Iran (Arachnida, Scorpiones). Part X. Alborz, Markazi And Tehran Provinces With A Description Of Orthochirus Carinatus Sp. N. (Buthidae), Shahrokh Navidpour, František Kovařík, Michael Soleglad, Victor Fet

Euscorpius

Nine species of scorpions belonging to two families are reported from the Alborz, Markazi and Tehran Provinces of Iran. Of these, Compsobuthus kaftani Kovařík, 2003 is recorded from Tehran Province for the first time; Compsobuthus matthiesseni (Birula, 1905) is recorded from Alborz Province for the first time; Hottentotta saulcyi (Simon, 1880) is recorded for Alborz and Markazi Provinces for the first time; Iranobuthus krali Kovařík, 1997 is recorded for Tehran Province for the first time; Mesobuthus eupeus eupeus (C. L. Koch, 1839) is recorded from Alborz, Markazi and Tehran Provinces for the first time; Odontobuthus doriae (Thorell, 1876) is recorded ...


Scorpions Of The Horn Of Africa (Arachnida: Scorpiones). Part Xix. Pandiborellius Meidensis (Karsch, 1879) And Pandinurus Fulvipes Sp. N. (Scorpionidae) From Somaliland., František Kovařík, Graeme Lowe, Tomáš Mazuch Feb 2019

Scorpions Of The Horn Of Africa (Arachnida: Scorpiones). Part Xix. Pandiborellius Meidensis (Karsch, 1879) And Pandinurus Fulvipes Sp. N. (Scorpionidae) From Somaliland., František Kovařík, Graeme Lowe, Tomáš Mazuch

Euscorpius

The male of Pandiborellius meidensis (Karsch, 1879) is introduced for the first time and illustrated in detail with color photos, and sexual dimorphism and occurrence of the species are discussed. Pandinurus fulvipes sp. n. from Somaliland is described and fully complemented with color photos of live and preserved specimens, as well as of its habitat.


Chaerilus Alberti Sp. N. From Malaysia (Scorpiones: Chaerilidae), František Kovařík Feb 2019

Chaerilus Alberti Sp. N. From Malaysia (Scorpiones: Chaerilidae), František Kovařík

Euscorpius

Chaerilus alberti sp. n. from Malaysia (Cameron Highlands) is described and fully illustrated with color photographs of preserved specimens, as well as of their habitat. Males of C. alberti sp. n. have a unique shape of chela which is stout with the manus swollen anteriorly. They are compared to other species from Southeast Asia, from all of which C. alberti sp. n. differs by the shape of pedipalp chela parallel or swollen posteriorly or medially. Pedipalp chela is illustrated with color photographs of 21 of these species.


A New Semidesert Microtityus Kjellesvig-Waering, 1966 (Scorpiones: Buthidae) From Southeast Cuba, Greater Antilles., Rolando Teruel Jan 2019

A New Semidesert Microtityus Kjellesvig-Waering, 1966 (Scorpiones: Buthidae) From Southeast Cuba, Greater Antilles., Rolando Teruel

Euscorpius

A new species of the buthid scorpion genus Microtityus Kjellesvig-Waering, 1966, is herein described from specimens of both sexes collected at three nearby localities in the western part of the Guantánamo Bay Area, southeast Cuba. It belongs in the "jaumei" species-group of the subgenus Microtityus (Parvabsonus) Armas, 1974 and is very peculiar not only by its external morphology (very distinct from its other Cuban congeners), but also by the unusual habitat where it occurs in and seems to be restricted to (dry and hot cactus scrub on volcanic sandy plain). The present contribution reinforces the position of this genus as ...


Scorpions Of The Horn Of Africa (Arachnida, Scorpiones). Part Xviii. Gint Banfasae Sp. N. From Somaliland (Buthidae), František Kovařík, Graeme Lowe Jan 2019

Scorpions Of The Horn Of Africa (Arachnida, Scorpiones). Part Xviii. Gint Banfasae Sp. N. From Somaliland (Buthidae), František Kovařík, Graeme Lowe

Euscorpius

Gint banfasae sp. n. from Somaliland is described and compared with other species of the genus. Additional information is provided on the taxonomy and distribution of the genus Gint, fully complemented with color photos of specimens of both sexes of the new species, as well as of their habitat. Included is a key for Gint.


More Evidence Of Complex Cognition In Nonhuman Species, Lesley J. Rogers Jan 2019

More Evidence Of Complex Cognition In Nonhuman Species, Lesley J. Rogers

Animal Sentience

Chapman & Huffman have highlighted observations of animals performing, in nature, complex behaviour once thought to be unique to humans. Just as relevant to their argument are examples of cognition shown by domesticated species tested in controlled conditions. These strengthen the case for human/nonhuman similarities in behaviour and cognition. Recent research has brought to our attention the ability of nonhuman species to perform many tasks previously considered to be the hallmark of humans. Even though different species may use different ways of solving these tasks, the very fact that they can do it undermines the notion of human superiority.


Unique In Degree Not Kindness, Jennifer Vonk Jan 2019

Unique In Degree Not Kindness, Jennifer Vonk

Animal Sentience

Humans are certainly unique among living species. This is evident in the transformation of human environments and its resulting impact on other animals. However, many of the traits unique to humans are costly as well as adaptive and should certainly not be used to elevate their status above that of other species.


Developmental Aspects Of Capacities, Karen Bartsch Jan 2019

Developmental Aspects Of Capacities, Karen Bartsch

Animal Sentience

Chapman & Huffman suggest that judgments of human superiority underlie our cruelty to animals. It might be useful to examine how such judgments operate within the human community. Children arguably have a potential for developing “superior” capacities but are outperformed on many tasks by animals. There is a continuum of development in children’s capacities. Perhaps there are interspecies evolutionary continua too. This highlights the complexity of reasoning about humans, animals, and moral inclusion.


Animal Sentience Is Not Enough To Motivate Conservation, Irene M. Pepperberg Jan 2019

Animal Sentience Is Not Enough To Motivate Conservation, Irene M. Pepperberg

Animal Sentience

Chapman & Huffman suggest that humans’ views of their own superiority are a source of their callousness toward the environment. I do not disagree but point to a number of other issues that must be addressed for conservation efforts to succeed.


Mirror Neurons And Humanity’S Dark Side, Gisela Kaplan Jan 2019

Mirror Neurons And Humanity’S Dark Side, Gisela Kaplan

Animal Sentience

The last two decades have revealed brain mechanisms in birds and primates showing that, contrary to earlier prejudices, some birds can do things (cognitive and affective) on par with or even better than great apes and humans. The old dichotomies are breaking down; but the dark side is that these insights come at a time in the Anthropocene when humans have caused and continue to cause mass extinctions.


Of Course, Humans Are Not Unique!, Bernard Wallner Jan 2019

Of Course, Humans Are Not Unique!, Bernard Wallner

Animal Sentience

This commentary focuses on the question of the uniqueness of humans in comparison to other species and on the false assumption that single arguments support logical conclusions. Comparative analysis of genetic data in humans and nonhuman primates regarding the dopaminergic system of the subcortical mesolimbic reward system highlights homologous traits shared and modified by the process of evolution. Such an analytical approach is more relevant than claims of uniqueness.


Humans May Be Unique And Superior — And That Is Irrelevant, Eze Paez Jan 2019

Humans May Be Unique And Superior — And That Is Irrelevant, Eze Paez

Animal Sentience

Chapman & Huffman argue that, because humans are neither unique nor superior to the other animals, cruelty to animals is not justified. Though I agree with their conclusion, I do not think their argument works. Many human beings do have some capacities that animals do not have and are greater in some respects, in the sense of having superior abilities. It is a better argument to deny that any of that is morally relevant. Sentience suffices for moral consideration, and for deriving a moral duty not to harm other animals and to assist them when they are in need.


Humans Have Always Been Unique!, William C. Mcgrew Jan 2019

Humans Have Always Been Unique!, William C. Mcgrew

Animal Sentience

Arguments about human uniqueness apply not only to extant species but also to extinct ones, that is, the hominin predecessors of anatomically modern Homo sapiens. Thus, unique and superior are doubly relative terms, in past and present. The scope for empirical comparison faces a spectrum of difficulty, from material (e.g., artefacts) to non-material (e.g., concepts) phenomena.


Phooey On Comparisons, Gwen J. Broude Jan 2019

Phooey On Comparisons, Gwen J. Broude

Animal Sentience

Chapman & Huffman reject the notion that human beings are very different from other animals. The goal is to undermine the claim that human uniqueness and even superiority are reason enough to treat other animals badly. But evaluating human uniqueness for this purpose only plays into the hands of those who exploit invidious comparisons between us and other animals to justify mistreatment of the rest of the animal kingdom. What human uniqueness we may discover would still be no justification for how we behave toward other animals. We should also ask ourselves whether any human-centric criterion can be justification for determining ...


Anthropomorphism Is The First Step, Marthe Kiley-Worthington Jan 2019

Anthropomorphism Is The First Step, Marthe Kiley-Worthington

Animal Sentience

Individuals have intentions, beliefs and choices. This sense of “personhood” has been known and used for centuries by those who have dealt professionally with any nonhuman mammal. All mammals have a lot in common physically and mentally. The first step toward understand another species’ point of view is anthropomorphism.


Sharing Emotions Builds Bridges Between Individuals And Between Species, Elisabetta Palagi Jan 2019

Sharing Emotions Builds Bridges Between Individuals And Between Species, Elisabetta Palagi

Animal Sentience

Many animal species express, perceive and share emotions. These abilities have been favoured by natural selection because they allow subjects to respond to various situations in an appropriate way, thus facilitating survival and increasing fitness. The same-face/same-emotion phenomenon is at the basis of sharing feelings and emotions. Recent studies show that this capacity is not unique to humans and that it plays an important role in creating cohesive societies in many different species.


Taking Exception To Human Exceptionalism, Carrie P. Freeman Jan 2019

Taking Exception To Human Exceptionalism, Carrie P. Freeman

Animal Sentience

Chapman & Huffman refute common claims used to justify human species distinctions, and they critique the animal cruelty that has resulted from this privileged status. I raise related questions for further study of the roots of human exceptionalism and about whether aspiring to be more like our fellow animals might be part of the solution.


Phenotypic Similarity And Moral Consideration, S. Brian Hood, Sophia Giddens Jan 2019

Phenotypic Similarity And Moral Consideration, S. Brian Hood, Sophia Giddens

Animal Sentience

Identifying specific traits to justify according differential moral status to humans and non-human animals may be more challenging than Chapman & Huffman suggest. The reasons for this also go against their recommendation that we ought to attend to how humans and non-humans are similar. The problem lies in identifying the moral relevance of biological characteristics. There are, however, other reasons for treating non-human animals as worthy of moral consideration, such as the Precautionary Principle.


Humans: Uniquely Responsible For Causing Conservation Problems, Uniquely Capable Of Solving Them, Michael L. Wilson, Clarence L. Lehman Jan 2019

Humans: Uniquely Responsible For Causing Conservation Problems, Uniquely Capable Of Solving Them, Michael L. Wilson, Clarence L. Lehman

Animal Sentience

We share Chapman & Huffman’s views on the importance of promoting animal welfare and conservation. We disagree with their implication, however, that reverence for life and concern for the wellbeing of global ecosystems depend on a belief that other living things are similar to humans in any of their capacities. Humans exhibit special traits — language, cumulative culture, extraordinary capacity for cooperation when we are at our best, and ever-advancing technological developments — that enabled them to dominate the planet, resulting in the current conservation crisis. It is precisely the fact that humans have become unique that provides hope for finding conservation ...


Scorpions Of The Horn Of Africa (Arachnida, Scorpiones). Part Xvii.Revision Of Neobuthus, With Description Of Seven New Species From Ethiopia, Kenya And Somaliland (Buthidae), František Kovařík, Graeme Lowe, Ahmed Ibrahim Awale, Hassan Sh Abdirahman Elmi, Ali Abdi Hurre Dec 2018

Scorpions Of The Horn Of Africa (Arachnida, Scorpiones). Part Xvii.Revision Of Neobuthus, With Description Of Seven New Species From Ethiopia, Kenya And Somaliland (Buthidae), František Kovařík, Graeme Lowe, Ahmed Ibrahim Awale, Hassan Sh Abdirahman Elmi, Ali Abdi Hurre

Euscorpius

New information about the taxonomy and distribution of the genus Neobuthus Hirst, 1911 is presented, based on material recently collected mainly from Somaliland, but also Djibouti and Kenya. Emended diagnoses are proposed for N. berberensis Hirst, 1911 and N. ferrugineus (Kraepelin, 1898) sensu stricto. New species described are: N. amoudensis sp. n. from Ethiopia and Somaliland; N. erigavoensis sp. n., N. factorio sp. n., N. gubanensis sp. n., N. maidensis sp. n., and N. montanus sp. n. from Somaliland; and N. kloppersi sp. n. from Kenya. This doubles the number of species in Neobuthus, unearthing a rich diversification of this ...


Revision Of The Central Asian Scorpion Genus Anomalobuthus Kraepelin, 1900, With Descriptions Of Three New Species And A Generic Synonymy (Scorpiones: Buthidae), Rolando Teruel, František Kovařík, Victor Fet Dec 2018

Revision Of The Central Asian Scorpion Genus Anomalobuthus Kraepelin, 1900, With Descriptions Of Three New Species And A Generic Synonymy (Scorpiones: Buthidae), Rolando Teruel, František Kovařík, Victor Fet

Euscorpius

We revise the Central Asian endemic genus Anomalobuthus Kraepelin, 1900, which was considered monotypic for more than 100 years until the recent addition of a second species from Iran (Teruel et al., 2014). We redefine the generic diagnosis of Anomalobuthus and reveal that it is composed of no less than six species, three of which are described as new: A. krivochatskyi, sp. n. (central Uzbekistan and extreme southern Kazakhstan), A. lowei, sp. n. (southeastern Kazakhstan), and A. pavlovskyi, sp. n. (south-central Kazakhstan and extreme northern Turkmenistan). The monotypic genus Psammobuthus Birula, 1911 (described from the Ferghana Valley at the border ...


Employing Natural History Collections In The Aid Of Conservation: Streamlining An Approach To Model Species Distributions En Masse For The Preservation Of Biodiversity, Alice Fornari Dec 2018

Employing Natural History Collections In The Aid Of Conservation: Streamlining An Approach To Model Species Distributions En Masse For The Preservation Of Biodiversity, Alice Fornari

Master's Projects and Capstones

Using species distribution models (SDMs) in Natural History Collections (NHCs) can influence how humans implement conservation changes in flora and fauna communities and ecosystems. Through the use of legacy data (old NHCs and their associated locality/collection information), data correction (background data or pseudo absences added to presence-only data), and the SDM software, Maxent (and its associated geographic information systems or GIS projected models), it has been shown that it is feasible to create a low budget protocol/setup to project the past, present and future of species population changes. This has been done in the past few decades as ...


Rediscovery Of Red Wolf Ghost Alleles In Canid Population Along The American Gulf Coast, Elizabeth Heppenheimer, Kristin Brzeski, Ron Wooten, William Waddell, Linda Y. Rutledge, Michael J. Chamberlain, Et. Al. Dec 2018

Rediscovery Of Red Wolf Ghost Alleles In Canid Population Along The American Gulf Coast, Elizabeth Heppenheimer, Kristin Brzeski, Ron Wooten, William Waddell, Linda Y. Rutledge, Michael J. Chamberlain, Et. Al.

School of Forest Resources and Environmental Science Publications

Rediscovering species once thought to be extinct or on the edge of extinction is rare. Red wolves have been extinct along the American Gulf Coast since 1980, with their last populations found in coastal Louisiana and Texas. We report the rediscovery of red wolf ghost alleles in a canid population on Galveston Island, Texas. We analyzed over 7000 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in 60 canid representatives from all legally recognized North American Canis species and two phenotypically ambiguous canids from Galveston Island. We found notably high Bayesian cluster assignments of the Galveston canids to captive red wolves with extensive sharing ...


Population Genomic Analysis Of North American Eastern Wolves (Canic Lycaon) Support Their Conservation Priority Status, Elizabeth Heppenheimer, Ryan Harrigan, Linda Rutledge, Klaus-Peter Koepfli, Alexandra L. Decandia, Kristin Brzeski, Et. Al. Dec 2018

Population Genomic Analysis Of North American Eastern Wolves (Canic Lycaon) Support Their Conservation Priority Status, Elizabeth Heppenheimer, Ryan Harrigan, Linda Rutledge, Klaus-Peter Koepfli, Alexandra L. Decandia, Kristin Brzeski, Et. Al.

School of Forest Resources and Environmental Science Publications

The threatened eastern wolf is found predominantly in protected areas of central Ontario and has an evolutionary history obscured by interbreeding with coyotes and gray wolves, which challenges its conservation status and subsequent management. Here, we used a population genomics approach to uncover spatial patterns of variation in 281 canids in central Ontario and the Great Lakes region. This represents the first genome-wide single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) dataset with substantial sample sizes of representative populations. Although they comprise their own genetic cluster, we found evidence of eastern wolf dispersal outside of the boundaries of protected areas, in that the frequency ...


Painted Ferocity: The Social Behaviors Of African Wild Dogs, Threats To Survival, And Resulting Conservation Initiatives, Alexis Valdes Dec 2018

Painted Ferocity: The Social Behaviors Of African Wild Dogs, Threats To Survival, And Resulting Conservation Initiatives, Alexis Valdes

Senior Honors Theses

African Wild Dogs (Lycaon pictus) are an endangered species of canid from Sub-Saharan Africa. They are very social communal hunters, and are capable of chasing down prey for long stretches of time. Wild dogs benefit a savannah ecosystem by regulating the populations of their prey so that it does not become unhealthy and overgrown. Like many organisms, wild dogs are also in competition with other predators for resources, namely lions and hyenas, who are capable of stealing their kills and occasionally injuring and killing them. Due to the depletion of their wild prey, wild dogs may also prey upon farmers ...


Vegetation Characteristics And Bird Communities Associated With Singing Painted Buntings In Northwest Arkansas, Lauren Kristina Thead Dec 2018

Vegetation Characteristics And Bird Communities Associated With Singing Painted Buntings In Northwest Arkansas, Lauren Kristina Thead

Theses and Dissertations

It has been shown that bird communities are affected by the species composition and physical structure of plant communities. Within avian communities, the bird species that are the most localized in distribution tend to be the most affected by habitat changes. My research analyzed plant and bird communities found with the Painted Bunting (Passerina ciris Linnaeus), a locally common but declining species throughout much of its range. First, I describe vegetation characteristics associated with singing male Painted Buntings in northwest Arkansas. I categorized field sites with singing male Painted Buntings as either managed for wildlife or unmanaged, based on land-use ...


Effect Of Macrograzers (Campostoma Spp. And Faxonius Spp.) On Periphyton In Ozark Streams With Considerations Given To Macrograzer Biomass, Phosphorus, And Season: Mensurative And Manipulative Studies, Kayla R. Sayre Dec 2018

Effect Of Macrograzers (Campostoma Spp. And Faxonius Spp.) On Periphyton In Ozark Streams With Considerations Given To Macrograzer Biomass, Phosphorus, And Season: Mensurative And Manipulative Studies, Kayla R. Sayre

Theses and Dissertations

Nutrient and benthic algal biomass relationships can guide numeric nutrient criteria development in lotic systems. However, herbivorous macrograzers may confound this relationship by reducing the slope of the positive relationship between nutrients and periphyton biomass in streams. I conducted a mensurative field study to determine if stoneroller and crayfish abundance related to algal biomass at varying nutrient concentrations and manipulated macrograzer presence with electrical exclosures in streams to examine macrograzer effects on algal biomass and understand whether these effects on periphyton varied with total phosphorus (TP) or season. Macrograzer density was quantified across a TP gradient (n=15 streams; range ...