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Urbanization

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Full-Text Articles in Life Sciences

Urban Bat Pups Take After Their Mothers And Are Bolder And Faster Learners Than Rural Pups., Lee Harten, Nesim Gonceer, Michal Handel, Orit Dash, H. Bobby Fokidis, Yossi Yovel Sep 2021

Urban Bat Pups Take After Their Mothers And Are Bolder And Faster Learners Than Rural Pups., Lee Harten, Nesim Gonceer, Michal Handel, Orit Dash, H. Bobby Fokidis, Yossi Yovel

Faculty Publications

Background: Urbanization is rapidly changing our planet and animals that live in urban environments must quickly adjust their behavior. One of the most prevalent behavioral characteristics of urban dwelling animals is an increased level of risk-taking. Here, we aimed to reveal how urban fruitbats become risk-takers, and how they differ behaviorally from rural bats, studying both genetic and non-genetic factors that might play a role in the process. We assessed the personality of newborn pups from both rural and urban colonies before they acquired experience outdoors, examining risk-taking, exploration, and learning rates.

Results: Urban pups exhibited significantly higher risk-taking levels ...


Diminishing Opportunities For Sustainability Of Coastal Cities In The Anthropocene: A Review, John W. Day, Joel D. Gunn, Joseph Robert Burger Aug 2021

Diminishing Opportunities For Sustainability Of Coastal Cities In The Anthropocene: A Review, John W. Day, Joel D. Gunn, Joseph Robert Burger

Biology Faculty Publications

The world is urbanizing most rapidly in tropical to sub-temperate areas and in coastal zones. Climate change along with other global change forcings will diminish the opportunities for sustainability of cities, especially in coastal areas in low-income countries. Climate forcings include global temperature and heatwave increases that are expanding the equatorial tropical belt, sea-level rise, an increase in the frequency of the most intense tropical cyclones, both increases and decreases in freshwater inputs to coastal zones, and increasingly severe extreme precipitation events, droughts, freshwater shortages, heat waves, and wildfires. Current climate impacts are already strongly influencing natural and human systems ...


A Living City: Food Accessibility And Urban Growth In New York City, Kat Coleman May 2021

A Living City: Food Accessibility And Urban Growth In New York City, Kat Coleman

Student Theses 2015-Present

This paper examines the way in which food equity and localization initiatives, specifically in New York City, are a vital response to urban growth and sustainable food demand. Improvements to the current food system in the form of changing the way food is produced, procured, stored, transported, and distributed improves nutrition and contributes to urban sustainability. Chapter 1 provides data on urban environmental justice issues related to food equity, drawing on research from the United Nations and food justice organizations in New York City. Chapter 2 explores the ethical issues surrounding food access and food justice in an increasingly urban ...


State Of The Salish Sea: Executive Summary, Kathryn L. Sobocinski May 2021

State Of The Salish Sea: Executive Summary, Kathryn L. Sobocinski

Institute Publications

This report synthesizes information on past, current, and emerging stressors within the Salish Sea estuarine ecosystem. The Salish Sea is a complex waterbody shared by Coast Salish Tribes and First Nations, Canada, and the United States. It is defined by multiple freshwater inputs and marine water from the Pacific Ocean that mix in two primary basins, Puget Sound and the Strait of Georgia. Human impacts are multifaceted and extensive within the Salish Sea, with a regional population of almost 9 million people. Population growth has driven urbanization and development, which in turn has triggered structural changes to the landscape and ...


The State Of The Salish Sea, Kathryn L. Sobocinski May 2021

The State Of The Salish Sea, Kathryn L. Sobocinski

Institute Publications

This report synthesizes information on past, current, and emerging stressors within the Salish Sea estuarine ecosystem. The Salish Sea is a complex waterbody shared by Coast Salish Tribes and First Nations, Canada, and the United States. It is defined by multiple freshwater inputs and marine water from the Pacific Ocean that mix in two primary basins, Puget Sound and the Strait of Georgia. Human impacts are multifaceted and extensive within the Salish Sea, with a regional population of almost 9 million people. Population growth has driven urbanization and development, which in turn has triggered structural changes to the landscape and ...


Vignette 8: Connection To Place: Indigenous Leadership In Səlilwət (Burrard Inlet), Tsleil-Waututh Nation’S Treaty Lands And Resources Department May 2021

Vignette 8: Connection To Place: Indigenous Leadership In Səlilwət (Burrard Inlet), Tsleil-Waututh Nation’S Treaty Lands And Resources Department

Institute Publications

Since time out of mind, Tsleil-Waututh have used and occupied Burrard Inlet and surrounding watersheds. Generations of Tsleil-Waututh people were brought up with the teaching, “When the tide went out, the table was set.” About 90% of our diet was once derived from Burrard Inlet and the Fraser River, but today the Inlet is unable to support our needs. Cumulative effects of colonial settlement and development have eroded the ecological health, integrity, and diversity of the Inlet. Tsleil-Waututh Nation (TWN) has a goal to restore the health of the Inlet so that we, and future generations of Tsleil-Waututh People, can ...


Vignette 6: Living Shorelines In Puget Sound, Jason Toft May 2021

Vignette 6: Living Shorelines In Puget Sound, Jason Toft

Institute Publications

Nearly one third of Puget Sound’s shorelines are armored (e.g., seawall, bulkhead, riprap). Armoring has documented negative impacts on the flora and fauna that benefit from healthy intertidal beaches. Although shoreline armor may be necessary in some cases to protect people and property, there are often promising “living shoreline” options to restore natural features, also referred to as soft or green shorelines. These options can be applied to situations where complete restoration is either impractical or not feasible given human constraints. Living shoreline techniques often include a mix of design options, including armor removal, sediment nourishment of beaches ...


Vignette 11: Ecological Consequences Of Built Shorelines In The Salish Sea, Stuart H. Munsch May 2021

Vignette 11: Ecological Consequences Of Built Shorelines In The Salish Sea, Stuart H. Munsch

Institute Publications

The world's population is disproportionately located near water. As a result, many nearshore ecosystems are highly modified. This is the case in the Salish Sea where many species rely on shoreline habitats. One of the major modifications to the Salish Sea's shoreline is armoring. Armored shorelines sever the connection between land and sea, preventing mutual exchange of nutrients and energy, influencing fish composition, and affecting photosynthetic species through overwater structures. By appreciating habitat impacts and how to mitigate them, we may steer toward a future that enables people and nearshore ecosystems to coexist. Restoring shorelines by removing armoring ...


Vignette 18: Bellingham Bay, Legacy Contamination Under Repair, Olivia Klein May 2021

Vignette 18: Bellingham Bay, Legacy Contamination Under Repair, Olivia Klein

Institute Publications

Bellingham Bay, home to twelve designated hazardous waste cleanup sites, illustrates the harm of past practices as well as the effectiveness of cleanup efforts. Since 2000, the Bellingham Bay cleanup has focused on the removal of contaminated sediment and soils introduced from a wide variety of sources, including construction and other industrial and municipal activities. Bellingham Bay cleanup is managed by the Washington State Department of Ecology (under the authority of Washington State’s Model Toxic Control Act) in coordination with a multi- agency Bellingham Bay Action Team.


Vignette 20: Fraser River Estuary In Need Of Urgent Intensive Care, Laura Kehoe, Tara G. Martin May 2021

Vignette 20: Fraser River Estuary In Need Of Urgent Intensive Care, Laura Kehoe, Tara G. Martin

Institute Publications

The Fraser River is the lifeline of the Salish Sea, influencing its stratification, circulation, and primary productivity. If we do not take strong action to conserve the Fraser River estuary, two-thirds of the species at risk in this region are predicted to have a less than 50% chance of survival. Many of the region's most iconic species could disappear. Conservation action combined with environmental governance is a pathway for a brighter future for the Fraser River and other highly contested regions.


Vignette 7: Stormwater Effluent Exerts A Key Pressure On The Salish Sea, Emily Howe May 2021

Vignette 7: Stormwater Effluent Exerts A Key Pressure On The Salish Sea, Emily Howe

Institute Publications

One of the primary terrestrial pressures on the Salish Sea estuarine and marine environment is urban stormwater runoff. When rainfall runs across hard, impervious surfaces, rather than soaking into the soil, it picks up and delivers toxic contaminants directly to nearby streams, rivers, and eventually the Salish Sea. In fact, for most toxic substances, surface runoff is the largest contributing source of loading to Puget Sound. Unfortunately, the Salish Sea’s relationship with stormwater effluent is no outlier; stormwater is the fastest growing cause of surface water impairment in the United States as urbanization transitions forested and other natural landscapes ...


Section 1: Introduction, Kathryn L. Sobocinski May 2021

Section 1: Introduction, Kathryn L. Sobocinski

Institute Publications

Section 1 is an introduction to the report and the Salish Sea as a whole. The introduction provides an overview of the Salish Sea, the concept of "ecosystem health," and a roadmap to the rest of the report.


Section 4: Climate Change: A Global Problem With Local Impacts, Kathryn L. Sobocinski May 2021

Section 4: Climate Change: A Global Problem With Local Impacts, Kathryn L. Sobocinski

Institute Publications

Section 4 shifts from the local impacts of urbanization to the locally realized impacts of global climate change, including ocean acidification and sea level rise, followed by evidence of climate change in the ecosystem, ranging from phytoplankton and kelp, to wetlands, salmon, and marine birds.


Section 3: Urbanization And Human Impacts To The Seascape, Kathryn L. Sobocinski May 2021

Section 3: Urbanization And Human Impacts To The Seascape, Kathryn L. Sobocinski

Institute Publications

Section 3 turns to an in-depth discussion of stressors and impacts to the ecosystem from population growth and urbanization, such as increases in impervious surfaces, hardening of shorelines, and the problems caused by a myriad of marine contaminants.


Section 2: Context, Kathryn L. Sobocinski May 2021

Section 2: Context, Kathryn L. Sobocinski

Institute Publications

Section 2 sets a foundation for understanding the Salish Sea ecosystem by describing its fundamental biophysical processes and structure, including estuarine circulation, ecological productivity, and an overview of several important biogenic habitats.


Section 5: Cumulative Ecosystem Effects, Kathryn L. Sobocinski, Jennifer Boldt, Todd Sandell, Jaclyn Cleary, Michael Schmidt, Isobel Pearsall, Iris Kemp, Brian Riddell, Lynda V. Mapes May 2021

Section 5: Cumulative Ecosystem Effects, Kathryn L. Sobocinski, Jennifer Boldt, Todd Sandell, Jaclyn Cleary, Michael Schmidt, Isobel Pearsall, Iris Kemp, Brian Riddell, Lynda V. Mapes

Institute Publications

Section 5 introduces cumulative effects and brings in brief case discussions focused on herring, salmon, and orcas. Understanding the layers of stressors the ecosystem faces is integral to gaining a full picture of declines in ecosystem function.


Section 7: The Future Of The Salish Sea? A Call To Action, Ginny Broadhurst, Natalie Baloy, Kathryn L. Sobocinski May 2021

Section 7: The Future Of The Salish Sea? A Call To Action, Ginny Broadhurst, Natalie Baloy, Kathryn L. Sobocinski

Institute Publications

Section 7 provides perspective from the Salish Sea Institute, acknowledging that science alone will not resolve continuing problems or emerging issues. Stronger policies along with education, leadership, and collaboration are needed.


Section 6: Opportunities For Improving Assessment And Understanding Of The Salish Sea, Kathryn L. Sobocinski May 2021

Section 6: Opportunities For Improving Assessment And Understanding Of The Salish Sea, Kathryn L. Sobocinski

Institute Publications

Section 6 offers a list of science-based needs and opportunities brought to light by the report and various existing efforts within the Salish Sea science community, representing opportunities for greater collaboration across geographic and jurisdictional boundaries.


The Effects Of Urbanization On The Avian Gut Microbiome, Mae Berlow May 2021

The Effects Of Urbanization On The Avian Gut Microbiome, Mae Berlow

Doctoral Dissertations

The gut microbiome influences and is influenced by the host, and can affect the host organism by contributing to health, development and immunity. Similarly, the host can influence this community; it’s makeup can vary with host species, locality, diet, social stressors, and environmental stressors. Some of these environmental stressors have arisen due to human-induced rapid environmental change, like urbanization. The physiology and behaviors of organisms that are able to persist in urban environments are often different from their non-urban congeners. Nutrition, development, and immunity—all of which are affected by the gut microbiome—are important factors that can determine ...


The Effects Of Urbanization On Insect Morphology: A Meta-Analysis, Evann L. Bailey May 2021

The Effects Of Urbanization On Insect Morphology: A Meta-Analysis, Evann L. Bailey

Honors Theses

Urbanization has been shown to create a rapid change in the environment as you move from rural areas to urban areas. It can create a multitude of effects on the environment. Some examples include, land disturbance, pollution, increasing temperatures and a disturbance in vegetation and biodiversity. Insects are useful organisms that provide maintenance and upkeep for ecosystem functioning. The rapid development of urbanization and how it is changing the environment may impact insect morphology. Measuring morphological change in organisms have been used successfully as indicators of environmental and ecological disturbance. Changes that take place in an insect’s morphology may ...


Solutions Human Centered Approach To Conservation, Illustration Department, History, Philosophy, And The Social Sciences Department Mar 2021

Solutions Human Centered Approach To Conservation, Illustration Department, History, Philosophy, And The Social Sciences Department

Illustration Course Work & Materials

"These essays were were written and illustrated by students at the Rhode Island school of Design in February, 2021. Their perspectives are entirely personal and reflect their efforts within a 5.5-week fused studio/seminar course that was centered on the Sixth Mass Extinction and how biodiversity is changing because of humans. Discovering that science communication is more than delivering just the facts, students were invited to research a topic of personal interest that is relevant to human impacts on biodiversity. Through analysis of data and other scientific information, each sought to synthesize their research and opinions on their topic ...


Variation In Reversal Learning By Three Generalist Mesocarnivores, Lauren A. Stanton, Eli S. Bridge, Joost Huizinga, Shylo R. Johnson, Julie K. Young, Sarah Benson‑Amram Jan 2021

Variation In Reversal Learning By Three Generalist Mesocarnivores, Lauren A. Stanton, Eli S. Bridge, Joost Huizinga, Shylo R. Johnson, Julie K. Young, Sarah Benson‑Amram

USDA Wildlife Services - Staff Publications

Urbanization imposes novel challenges for wildlife, but also provides new opportunities for exploitation. Generalist species are commonly found in urban habitats, but the cognitive mechanisms facilitating their successful behavioral adaptations and exploitations are largely under-investigated. Cognitive flexibility is thought to enable generalists to be more plastic in their behavior, thereby increasing their adaptability to a variety of environments, including urban habitats. Yet direct measures of cognitive flexibility across urban wildlife are lacking. We used a classic reversal-learning paradigm to investigate the cognitive flexibility of three generalist mesocarnivores commonly found in urban habitats: striped skunks (Mephitis mephitis), raccoons (Procyon lotor), and ...


Comparing Semi-Urban And Forest Populations Of The Jalisco Mud Turtle (Kinosternon Chimalhuaca), Jose Garrido Jan 2021

Comparing Semi-Urban And Forest Populations Of The Jalisco Mud Turtle (Kinosternon Chimalhuaca), Jose Garrido

All Master's Theses

Mud turtles (family Kinosternidae) are primarily threatened by climate change, overexploitation, and land development. To survive in increasingly urbanized and arid regions, mud turtles often inhabit man-made water sources such as cattle troughs and irrigation ditches. These bodies of water are critical in urban habitat where they may offer some of the last remaining refugia; however, the effect of these conditions on population structure is poorly understood. The Jalisco mud turtle (Kinosternon chimalhuaca) was described in 1997 from a small range south of Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. Since its description, critical ecological research has remained largely nonexistent, hindering effective conservation and ...


Hurricane Irma Induces Divergent Behavioral And Hormonal Impacts On An Urban And Forest Population Of Invasive Anolis Lizards: Evidence For An Urban Resilience Hypothesis, Haralambos Fokidis, Taylor Brock Jan 2021

Hurricane Irma Induces Divergent Behavioral And Hormonal Impacts On An Urban And Forest Population Of Invasive Anolis Lizards: Evidence For An Urban Resilience Hypothesis, Haralambos Fokidis, Taylor Brock

Faculty Publications

Hurricanes can have both profound short-term effects on animal populations and serve as long-term drivers of evolutionary change. Animals inhabiting varying habitats may differ in their response to hurricane impacts. Increasing evidence sug- gests that animals from urban areas exhibit different behavioral and physiological traits compared to rural counterparts, in- cluding attenuated hormonal stress responses and a lowered propensity for flight behavior. A unique opportunity was pre- sented when Hurricane Irma hit Florida on 10 September 2017 and interrupted a study of invasive brown anoles (Anolis sagrei) at an urban and a forest. Using data collected before and after Hurricane ...


Genetic And Ecological Consequences Of Recent Habitat Fragmentation In A Narrow Endemic Plant Species Within An Urban Context, Nicola Delnevo, Andrea Piotti, Michele Carbognani, Eddie J. Van Etten, William D. Stock, David L. Field, Margaret Byrne Jan 2021

Genetic And Ecological Consequences Of Recent Habitat Fragmentation In A Narrow Endemic Plant Species Within An Urban Context, Nicola Delnevo, Andrea Piotti, Michele Carbognani, Eddie J. Van Etten, William D. Stock, David L. Field, Margaret Byrne

Research outputs 2014 to 2021

Understanding the timescales that shape spatial genetic structure is pivotal to ascertain the impact of habitat fragmentation on the genetic diversity and reproductive viability of long-lived plant populations. Combining genetic and ecological information with current and past fragmentation conditions allows the identification of the main drivers important in shaping population structure and declines in reproduction, which is crucial for informing conservation strategies. Using historic aerial photographs, we defined the past fragmentation conditions for the shrub Conospermum undulatum, a species now completely embedded in an urban area. We explored the impact of current and past conditions on its genetic layout and ...


Improving Understanding Of Forest Communities And Biodiversity With Multi-Dimensional Landscape Gradients, Ben J. Padilla Dec 2020

Improving Understanding Of Forest Communities And Biodiversity With Multi-Dimensional Landscape Gradients, Ben J. Padilla

Doctoral Dissertations

This dissertation was motivated by a desire to understand the effects of habitat degradation and urbanization on a single species in a single study system in western Massachusetts, the red-backed salamander (Plethodon cinereus), but along the way unexpected conceptual and methodological hurdles caused the work to grow into a multi-species, multi-region, and multi-scale endeavor. As I designed my dissertation research and began considering approaches to quantifying heterogeneity and human influence in my study landscape, I recognized inconsistencies in methods used to define and quantify landscape metrics, particularly in urban systems. To investigate further, I conducted a critical review of the ...


A Histopathological Review Of Immune Response In Largemouth Bass To Parasitic Infections Of Soft Tissues, James D. Stephenson Aug 2020

A Histopathological Review Of Immune Response In Largemouth Bass To Parasitic Infections Of Soft Tissues, James D. Stephenson

Theses and Dissertations

The immune response can serve as a key indicator of a fish’s overall health and the effect stressors have on the health of the fish. Anthropogenic factors can stress a fish’s immune system and inhibit immune responses. This study investigated the response of eosinophilic cells and macrophage aggregates to parasites in the livers, spleens, and gonads of Largemouth Bass, Micropterus salmoides. Largemouth Bass were sampled from three bodies of water in the Chattahoochee Valley of varying levels of urbanization. Histopathology of the aforementioned organs was conducted to observe both the parasite density and immune response. Eosinophilic cells were ...


La Habana: A History Of Society, Livelihood, Movement, And Land Use On The Iquitos-Nauta Highway, Katie Brown May 2020

La Habana: A History Of Society, Livelihood, Movement, And Land Use On The Iquitos-Nauta Highway, Katie Brown

Undergraduate Honors Theses

With increasing infrastructural projects and land titling in the Peruvian Amazon, many changes are occurring within small roadside communities. In this case study, we investigate how these changes impact livelihoods, land use, travel patterns, and social relations within the broader concepts of development, privatization of land, and commodification of nature. Specifically we focus on the caserío La Habana situated on the Iquitos-Nauta highway in the Loreto region of Peru. Semi-formal interviews and ethnographic methods were conducted to gather information on social organization, history of the community, land use practices, migration patterns, opinions on the road, and livelihood strategies. After data ...


Fish Assemblages Associated With A Newly Deployed Eco-Engineered Artificial Seawall In The Intercoastal Waters Of Port Everglades, Olmo Cinti Apr 2020

Fish Assemblages Associated With A Newly Deployed Eco-Engineered Artificial Seawall In The Intercoastal Waters Of Port Everglades, Olmo Cinti

HCNSO Student Theses and Dissertations

As the demand for urbanization of coastal areas increases, there is a strong interest to create new infrastructures that would replace natural habitats (Airoldi & Beck, 2007; Dugan et al., 2011). These infrastructures, due to their differences in composition and structure, are often associated with decreasing biodiversity, and proliferation of invasive species (Firth et al., 2014; Moschella et al., 2005). To minimize or attenuate these negative effects of hardening shorelines eco-engineering can be implemented. This kind of approach focuses on the modification of artificial habitats to enhance services that would not be otherwise obtained (Barbier et al., 2011; Mayer-Pinto et al., 2017; Strain ...


Active Humans, Inactive Carnivores, And Hiking Trails Within A Suburban Preserve, Sonny Bandak, Ronald J. Sarno, Michaela C. Peterson, Daniel Farkas, Melissa M. Grigione Mar 2020

Active Humans, Inactive Carnivores, And Hiking Trails Within A Suburban Preserve, Sonny Bandak, Ronald J. Sarno, Michaela C. Peterson, Daniel Farkas, Melissa M. Grigione

Suburban Sustainability

As urban areas continue to proliferate, so does the demand for outdoor recreation. Hiking trails permeate almost all remaining forest fragments within highly urbanized areas. The effects of hiking trails on carnivores remain unclear, especially in the northeastern United States. Therefore, our objectives were to investigate the spatial and temporal activity patterns of mammalian carnivores in relation to distance from hiking trails. From 2011-2012, 236 camera stations were randomly deployed between trail and off-trail areas that covered an area of 4.8km2. A total of 3880 trap nights yielded 346 coyote (Canis latrans), 371 raccoon (Procyon lotor), 75 bobcat ...