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Pattern Does Not Equal Process: Exactly When Is Sex Environmentally Determined?, M. Nicole Valenzuela, Dean C. Adams, Fredric J. Janzen 2016 Iowa State University

Pattern Does Not Equal Process: Exactly When Is Sex Environmentally Determined?, M. Nicole Valenzuela, Dean C. Adams, Fredric J. Janzen

Fredric Janzen

Of prime importance in evolutionary biology are the description of pattern and explanations of process. Frequently, however, multiple processes can explain a given pattern. Such cases require experimental protocols or research criteria to distinguish among alternatives so pattern can be critically assigned to process. Noteworthy examples of this approach include evaluating adaptations and identifying character displacement (Gould and Lewontin 1979; Schluter and McPhail 1992). The field of vertebrate sex determination similarly requires such criteria.


Nest-Site Philopatry And The Evolution Of Temperature-Dependent Sex Determination, Nicole M. Valenzuela, Fredric J. Janzen 2016 Iowa State University

Nest-Site Philopatry And The Evolution Of Temperature-Dependent Sex Determination, Nicole M. Valenzuela, Fredric J. Janzen

Fredric Janzen

Despite intensive research, there is no clear empirical evidence to explain the evolution and persistence of temperature-dependent sex determination in reptiles. A recent hypothesis presented by Reinhold proposes that natal homing could lead directly to the evolution of temperature-dependent sex determination. According to his hypothesis, daughters are produced in rare high-quality sites (associated with higher survival rates) to which they return and use to nest, thus deriving higher fitness than sons for whom the quality of the natal patch does not affect their reproductive output if they survive to maturity. We performed an initial empirical evaluation of several assumptions and ...


Telomere Length Shortens With Body Length In Alligator Mississippiensis, Nicole M. Scott, Mark F. Haussmann, Ruth M. Elsey, Phillip L. Trosclair III, Carol M. Vleck 2016 Iowa State University

Telomere Length Shortens With Body Length In Alligator Mississippiensis, Nicole M. Scott, Mark F. Haussmann, Ruth M. Elsey, Phillip L. Trosclair Iii, Carol M. Vleck

Carol Vleck

In Alligator mississippiensis (American Alligator), body length increases with age, but body length can be used as an accurate estimator of age only up to about 6–7 years, when growth rates slow considerably. Telomeres are repetitive DNA sequences that cap the ends of each chromosome. Telomeres shorten with age in most animals, but telomere shortening has not been examined in reptiles. We measured telomere length in erythrocytes of A. mississippiensis varying between ≈ 5 and 240 cm in body length and found a negative relationship between telomere length and body length (P < 0.01). Assuming that erythrocyte telomeres continue to shorten with time, even after growth rate declines, those individuals with the shortest telomeres should be the oldest members of the population. This method of estimating age, even in animals of similar body size, should allow questions about age structure and senescence to be addressed.


Scorpions Of The Horn Of Africa (Arachnida: Scorpiones). Part Vi. Compsobuthus Vachon, 1949 (Buthidae), With A Description Of C. Eritreaensis Sp. N., František Kovařík, Graeme Lowe, Jana Plíšková, František Šťáhlavský 2016 Charles University

Scorpions Of The Horn Of Africa (Arachnida: Scorpiones). Part Vi. Compsobuthus Vachon, 1949 (Buthidae), With A Description Of C. Eritreaensis Sp. N., František Kovařík, Graeme Lowe, Jana Plíšková, František Šťáhlavský

Euscorpius

All four Compsobuthus species of the Horn of Africa were newly collected, C. werneri firstly collected in Eritrea and C. eritreaensis sp. n. discovered during scorpiological expeditions in 2011–2016. Information is provided about their taxonomy, distribution, and ecology, fully complemented with color photos of live and preserved specimens, as well as their habitat. The hemispermatophore of C. eritreaensis sp. n. is illustrated and described. In addition to morphological analysis, we also describe the karyotype of C. eritreaensis sp. n. (2n=22).


A New Species Of Diplocentrus (Scorpionidae: Diplocentrinae) From Western Izabal, Guatemala, Luis F. de Armas, Rony E. Trujillo 2016 Universidad de San Carlos de Guatemala

A New Species Of Diplocentrus (Scorpionidae: Diplocentrinae) From Western Izabal, Guatemala, Luis F. De Armas, Rony E. Trujillo

Euscorpius

Diplocentrus izabal sp. n. is herein described on basis to one male (holotype) and two females from El Estor municipality, Izabal department, eastern Guatemala. It seems to be a close relative of Diplocentrus lachua Armas, Trujillo & Agreda, 2012, from which it differs by having carapace almost smooth, with anteromedian notch V-shaped; pectines with 11 teeth in both sexes, and carapace clearly longer than pedipalp manus and metasomal segment V (D. lachua has carapace minutely granulate, with anteromedian notch U-shaped; pectines with 13 teeth in the males (female unknown), and carapace as long as both pedipalp manus and metasomal segment V).


A Contribution To The Tardigrade Fauna Of Georgia, Usa, Juliana G. Hinton, Harry A. Meyer, Brad Peet 2016 McNeese State University

A Contribution To The Tardigrade Fauna Of Georgia, Usa, Juliana G. Hinton, Harry A. Meyer, Brad Peet

Georgia Journal of Science

Tardigrada (water bears) is a phylum of microscopic animals commonly found in mosses, lichens, leaf litter, and freshwater. There are no published records of marine tardigrades from Georgia. Twelve species have been reported from four counties in the state of Georgia, USA. Eighteen species of water bear were present in lichen, moss, and leaf litter samples from eight additional counties in northern and central Georgia. Ten species – Pseudechiniscus suillus, Milnesium bohleberi, Hypsibius convergens, Astatumen trinacriae, Macrobiotus anemone, Macrobiotus cf. echinogenitus, Macrobiotus cf. islandicus, Macrobiotus spectabilis, Paramacrobiotus cf. areolatus, and Paramacrobiotus tonollii – are new to the fauna of Georgia.


Are Animals Persons?, Mark Rowlands 2016 University of Miami

Are Animals Persons?, Mark Rowlands

Animal Sentience: An Interdisciplinary Journal on Animal Feeling

It is orthodox to suppose that very few, if any, nonhuman animals are persons. The category “person” is restricted to self-aware creatures: humans (above a certain age) and possibly some of the great apes and cetaceans. I argue that this orthodoxy should be rejected, because it rests on a mistaken conception of the kind of self-awareness relevant to personhood. Replacing this with a sense of self-awareness that is relevant requires us to accept that personhood is much more widely distributed through the animal kingdom.


Utilitarianism Generalized To Include Animals, Yew-Kwang Ng 2016 Nanyang Technological University

Utilitarianism Generalized To Include Animals, Yew-Kwang Ng

Animal Sentience: An Interdisciplinary Journal on Animal Feeling

In response to the seventeen commentaries to date on my target article on reducing animal suffering, I propose that the term “welfarism” (when used pejoratively by animal advocates) should be qualified as “anthropocentric welfarism” so as to leave “welfarism” simpliciter to be used in its generic sense of efforts to improve conditions for those who need it. Welfarism in this benign sense — even in its specific utilitarian form (maximizing the sum total of net welfare) with long-term future effects and effects on others (including animals) appropriately taken into account — should be unobjectionable (even if not considered sufficient by all advocates ...


Cross-Species Mind-Reading, Stevan Harnad 2016 Université du Québec à Montréal & University of Southampton

Cross-Species Mind-Reading, Stevan Harnad

Animal Sentience: An Interdisciplinary Journal on Animal Feeling

We can never be sure anyone else is sentient. But we can be sure enough in the case of other people, nonhuman primates, mammals, birds, fish, lower vertebrates and invertebrates as to make scepticism academic and otiose (not to mention monumentally cruel). The only genuinely uncertain kinds of cases are jellyfish, microbes and plants. The rest is not about whether but what they are feeling.


My Orgasms Cannot Be Traded Off Against Others’ Agony, Stevan Harnad 2016 Université du Québec à Montréal & University of Southampton

My Orgasms Cannot Be Traded Off Against Others’ Agony, Stevan Harnad

Animal Sentience: An Interdisciplinary Journal on Animal Feeling

Only I can calculate my own welfare as net pleasure minus pain. No one else can do that calculation for me – nor for a population, and especially not averaging across some individuals’ pleasure and other individuals’ pain. Pain and pleasure are incommensurable and only pain matters morally. To maximize welfare is to minimize pain.


In Praise Of Fishes: Précis Of What A Fish Knows (Balcombe 2016), Jonathan Balcombe 2016 Humane Society Institute for Science and Policy

In Praise Of Fishes: Précis Of What A Fish Knows (Balcombe 2016), Jonathan Balcombe

Animal Sentience: An Interdisciplinary Journal on Animal Feeling

Our relationship to fishes in the modern era is deeply problematic. We kill and consume more of them than any other group of vertebrates. At the same time, advances in our knowledge of fishes and their capabilities are gaining speed. Fish species diversity exceeds that of all other vertebrates combined, with a wide range of sensory adaptations, some of them (e.g., geomagnetism, water pressure and movement detection, and communication via electricity) alien to our own sensory experience. The evidence for pain in fishes (despite persistent detractors) is strongly supported by anatomical, physiological and behavioral studies. It is likely that ...


Sentience As Moral Consideration And Disvalue In Nature, Daniel Dorado 2016 Animal Ethics

Sentience As Moral Consideration And Disvalue In Nature, Daniel Dorado

Animal Sentience: An Interdisciplinary Journal on Animal Feeling

In recent work Ng assumes that it is good to engage in activities aimed at promoting ecosystem conservation. The only way Ng can derive this from the axiology he assumes (the view that wellbeing is the only intrinsically valuable or disvaluable thing) would be to assume that ecosystem conservation would benefit the individuals involved. This can be so as long as value prevails over disvalue in the target environments. Ng seems to assume this is indeed the case, but he does not explain why, and it is a claim that goes against the conclusions he has argued for previously (Ng ...


Inalienable Rights And Pluralism In Animal Advocacy, Beril Sözmen 2016 Istanbul Technical University

Inalienable Rights And Pluralism In Animal Advocacy, Beril Sözmen

Animal Sentience: An Interdisciplinary Journal on Animal Feeling

I comment on two of Ng’s suggestions. There is a lack of support for his suggestion that some experiments on individual animals will be useful for future success, so they should be permitted. I also question his recommendation that animal advocacy should focus on farmed animals first and wild animals later. The lack of solid support for why this would be a more effective strategy leads me to suggest a more pluralistic support of a variety of types of advocacy.


Changing Attitudes Towards Animals In The Wild And Speciesism, Oscar Horta 2016 University of Santiago de Compostela

Changing Attitudes Towards Animals In The Wild And Speciesism, Oscar Horta

Animal Sentience: An Interdisciplinary Journal on Animal Feeling

I argue that despite Ng’s claim that we should postpone the defense of those animals that live in the wild, we do have reasons to start spreading concern for them now. We can do it by (i) changing public attitude by heightening awareness of speciesism, by which we will also challenge animal exploitation; and (ii) by disseminating information about the situation of animals in the wild.


Avian Species Observed At The Gordon Natural Area (Data From Ebird And The 2004 West Chester Bird Club Survey Of The Gna), Nur Ritter, Josh R. Auld 2016 West Chester University of Pennsylvania

Avian Species Observed At The Gordon Natural Area (Data From Ebird And The 2004 West Chester Bird Club Survey Of The Gna), Nur Ritter, Josh R. Auld

Josh Auld

No abstract provided.


Why We Should Not Postpone Awareness Of Wild Animal Suffering, Catia Faria 2016 Universitat Pompeu Fabra

Why We Should Not Postpone Awareness Of Wild Animal Suffering, Catia Faria

Animal Sentience: An Interdisciplinary Journal on Animal Feeling

Ng (2016) restates his case for the importance of wild animal suffering (1995). Nevertheless, he suggests that the most effective way to reduce nonhuman suffering overall is to give short-term priority to the suffering of farmed animals. It is not clear that Ng puts forward a successful case. Our current efforts to prevent animal suffering overall should also include raising awareness of wild animal suffering now as well as promoting research on safe and feasible ways to prevent wild animal suffering in the future.


Utilization Of Woody Browse By White-Tailed Deer (Odocoileus Virginianus) In Valley Forge National Park, Joanne T. Pomerantz, Joan M. Welch 2016 Green Valleys Association

Utilization Of Woody Browse By White-Tailed Deer (Odocoileus Virginianus) In Valley Forge National Park, Joanne T. Pomerantz, Joan M. Welch

Joan Welch

No abstract provided.


Deer Browse In The Interior Forest Of Warwick County Park, Jacquelyn Arnold, Joan M. Welch 2016 West Chester University of Pennsylvania

Deer Browse In The Interior Forest Of Warwick County Park, Jacquelyn Arnold, Joan M. Welch

Joan Welch

No abstract provided.


Scorpions Of The Horn Of Africa (Arachnida, Scorpiones). Part V. Two New Species Of Neobuthus Hirst, 1911 (Buthidae), From Ethiopia And Eritrea, Graeme Lowe, František Kovařík 2016 Monell Chemical Senses Center

Scorpions Of The Horn Of Africa (Arachnida, Scorpiones). Part V. Two New Species Of Neobuthus Hirst, 1911 (Buthidae), From Ethiopia And Eritrea, Graeme Lowe, František Kovařík

Euscorpius

New information about the taxonomy and distribution of the genus Neobuthus Hirst, 1911 (Scorpiones: Buthidae) is presented, based on materials recently collected from Ethiopia and Eritrea. Emended diagnoses are provided for the genus Neobuthus, and for the species N. awashensis Kovařík et Lowe, 2012 and N. cloudsleythompsoni Lourenço, 2001. New records are given for N. awashensis in Ethiopia. We redescribe N. cloudsleythompsoni, and we describe two additional new species: N. eritreaensis sp. n. (the first record of the genus from Eritrea) and N. kutcheri sp. n. (southern Ethiopia, Somali State). We include a key to six members of the genus ...


Range-Wide Patterns Of Geographic Variation In Songs Of Golden-Crowned Sparrows (Zonotrichia Atricapilla), Daizaburo Shizuka, M Ross Lein, Glen Chilton 2016 University of Chicago

Range-Wide Patterns Of Geographic Variation In Songs Of Golden-Crowned Sparrows (Zonotrichia Atricapilla), Daizaburo Shizuka, M Ross Lein, Glen Chilton

Faculty Publications in the Biological Sciences

Discrete geographic variation, or dialects, in songs of songbirds arise as a consequence of complex interactions between ecology and song learning. Four of the five species of Zonotrichia sparrows, including the model species White-crowned Sparrow (Z. leucophrys), have been studied with respect to the causes and consequences of geographic variation in song. Within White-crowned Sparrows, subspecies that migrate farther have larger range size of dialects. Here, we assessed geographic patterns of song variation in the fifth species of this genus, the Golden-crowned Sparrow (Z. atricapilla). We analyzed field-recorded songs from 2 sampling periods (1996–1998 and 2006–2013) covering most ...


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