Distribution by Scientific Domains
Distribution within Life Sciences

Kinds of Nests

  • active nest
  • ant nest
  • cell nest
  • communal nest
  • control nest
  • different nest
  • host nest
  • individual nest
  • natal nest
  • natural nest
  • new nest
  • other nest
  • same nest
  • several nest
  • single nest
  • tit nest
  • tumor cell nest
  • tumor nest

  • Terms modified by Nests

  • nest aggregation
  • nest box
  • nest building
  • nest construction
  • nest count
  • nest defence
  • nest density
  • nest experiment
  • nest failure
  • nest groups
  • nest height
  • nest location
  • nest loss
  • nest material
  • nest predation
  • nest predation rate
  • nest predation risk
  • nest predator
  • nest protection
  • nest site
  • nest site characteristic
  • nest site selection
  • nest size
  • nest structure
  • nest success
  • nest survival
  • nest survival rate
  • nest temperature

  • Selected Abstracts

    The catalytic domain of human neuropathy target esterase mediates an organophosphate-sensitive ionic conductance across liposome membranes

    Philip J. Forshaw
    In humans and other vertebrates, reaction of organophosphates with a neuronal membrane protein, neuropathy target esterase (NTE), initiates events which culminate in axonal degeneration. The initiation process appears to involve modification of a property of the protein distinct from its esterase activity, subsequent to formation of a negatively charged adduct with the active site serine residue. Here, we show that membrane patches from liposomes containing NEST, a recombinant hydrophobic polypeptide comprising the esterase domain of human NTE, display a transmembrane ionic conductance with both stable and high-frequency flickering components. An asymmetric current,voltage relationship suggested that ion flow was favoured in one direction relative to the membrane and its associated NEST molecules. Flow of anions was slightly favoured compared with cations. The flickering current formed a much larger proportion of the overall conductance in patches containing wild-type NEST compared with the catalytically inactive S966A mutant form of the protein. The conductance across patches containing NEST, but not those with the S966A mutant, was significantly reduced after adding neuropathic organophosphates to the bathing medium. By contrast, non-neuropathic covalent inhibitors of the catalytic activity of NEST did not reduce NEST-mediated conductance. Future work may establish whether NTE itself mediates an organophosphate-sensitive ion flux across intracellular membranes within intact cells. [source]

    Nest, but Not Egg, Fidelity in a Territorial Salamander

    ETHOLOGY, Issue 9 2000
    Megan G. Peterson
    Egg recognition and subsequent egg brooding are costly forms of parental investment in many species of vertebrates. Life history factors, such as coloniality or risk of brood parasitism, may constrain egg recognition in vertebrates. Female red-backed salamanders (Plethodon cinereus) from my study site are territorial and do not share nest sites with other females. They are terrestrial and neither they nor their eggs are likely to be displaced by environmental factors such as flooding. I experimentally tested, in the laboratory, the hypothesis that female red-backed salamanders can discriminate between their own eggs and the eggs of unfamiliar females. Each female was allowed to move about a test chamber containing two clutches of eggs, one clutch with which it was found in the forest and one that had been found with a distant female. Most females remained with one clutch of eggs, which they brooded during the entire observation period. However, they did not significantly prefer to brood their own eggs over the eggs of another female. In a corollary field experiment, I tested whether brooding females that were displaced 1 m from their nest sites would return to their territories and commence brooding behaviour within 3 d. All 10 displaced females returned to their own nest within this time period and were found brooding their eggs. Because female red-backed salamanders at my study site do not tend to share nest sites with other females and because their eggs remain in stationary nests, selection may not have favoured egg recognition. However, the results suggest that female salamanders indirectly recognize their own eggs by actively recognizing their territorial nest sites. [source]

    Auditors-General: Cuckoos in the Managerialist Nest?

    Richard Mulgan
    The role of Auditors-General has expanded in recent decades, particularly with the development of performance auditing. Performance auditing originated in the managerialist concern for monitoring results, but in some respects Auditors-General have found themselves at odds with managerialism, particularly where outsourcing and privatisation have reduced the level of public accountability. Performance auditing has also increased the potential for Auditors-General to clash openly with elected governments, though for the most part they confine their scrutiny to the activities of public servants. Auditors-General have more authority to confront governments over matters of propriety than over efficiency and effectiveness issues. [source]

    The Weaver Wasp: Spinning Fungus into a Nest

    BIOTROPICA, Issue 4 2010
    Mario X. Ruiz-González
    ABSTRACT Wasp nests range from simple to complex structures made of paper or mud. Here, we show that a Neotropical wasp of the genus Nitela builds its nest entirely by weaving endophytic fungal hyphae and spider silk harvested from the leaves growing in the understory of the rain forest in French Guiana. [source]

    Patterns of Nest Predation on Artificial and Natural Nests in Forests

    ave de bosque; depredación de nidos; éxito de nidos; experimento de nidos artificiales; nidos naturales Abstract:,Artificial nest experiments have been used in an attempt to understand patterns of predation affecting natural nests. A growing body of literature suggests that neither relative rates nor patterns of predation are the same for artificial and natural nests. We studied nest predation and daily mortality rates and patterns at real and artificial ground and shrub nests to test the validity of artificial nest experiments. We monitored 1667 artificial and 344 natural nests, over seven trials, in three regions, across 58 sites in Ontario. We controlled for many of the factors thought to be responsible for previously reported differences between predation rates on natural and artificial nests. Although artificial nests in our study resembled natural nests, contained eggs of appropriate size, shape, and color of target bird species, and were placed in similar microhabitats as natural nests, the rates of predation on these nests did not parallel rates on natural nests for any region in terms of absolute rate or pattern. Predation rates on artificial nests did not vary between years, as they tended to for natural nests, and the magnitude of predation pressure on artificial ground nests compared with shrub nests did not show the same pattern as that on natural nests. In general, rates of predation on artificial nests were significantly higher than on natural nests. Our results suggest that conclusions derived from artificial nest studies may be unfounded. Given that many influential ideas in predation theory are based on results of artificial nest experiments, it may be time to redo these experiments with natural nests. Resumen:,Se han utilizado experimentos con nidos artificiales con la intención de entender los patrones de depredación que afectan a los nidos naturales. La bibliografía sugiere que ni las tasas relativas ni los patrones de depredación son iguales para nidos artificiales y naturales. Estudiamos las tasas y patrones de depredación de nidos y de mortalidad diaria en nidos reales y artificiales sobre el suelo y en matorrales para probar la validez de los experimentos con nidos artificiales. Monitoreamos 1667 nidos artificiales y 344 nidos naturales, en siete pruebas, en tres regiones, en 58 sitios en Notario. Controlamos muchos de los factores que se piensa son responsables de diferencias entre tasas de depredación en nidos naturales y artificiales reportadas previamente. Aunque los nidos artificiales en nuestro estudio se asemejaron a nidos naturales, contenían huevos de tamaño, forma y color adecuados para la especie de ave y fueron colocados en microhábitats similares a los de nidos naturales, las tasas de depredación en estos nidos no fueron similares a las tasas en nidos naturales en ninguna región en términos de tasa o patrón absoluto. Las tasas de depredación en nidos artificiales no variaron de un año a otro, como fue la tendencia en nidos naturales, y la magnitud de la presión de depredación en nidos sobre el suelo comparada con nidos en arbustos no mostró el mismo patrón que la depredación en nidos naturales. Nuestros resultados sugieren que las conclusiones derivadas de estudios con nidos artificiales pueden ser infundadas. Debido a que muchas ideas influyentes en la teoría de la depredación se basan en los resultados de experimentos con nidos artificiales, puede haber llegado el momento de volver a realizar estos experimentos utilizando nidos naturales. [source]

    Seasonal spatial dynamics and causes of nest movement in colonies of the invasive Argentine ant (Linepithema humile)

    Abstract 1.,Colony organisation and movement behaviour of the Argentine ant (Linepithema humile) was studied over 3 years in field populations in California and in captive colonies in the laboratory. This invasive species is highly polydomous and unicolonial; colonies consist of expansive and fluid networks of nests and trails. The spatial and temporal organisation of colonies may contribute to ecological dominance. 2.,Argentine ant nests and inter-nest trails shift in size, abundance, and location, so that colony networks are spatially contracted in the winter and expanded spring to autumn. Colonies occupy permanent sites; ants migrated to and from the same winter nest locations year after year, and occupied 30% of the same nests repeatedly during seasonal migrations. 3.,Nests were moved on average 2,3 m. Forty-two per cent were occupied less than 1 month, 4% the entire study, and the other 54% lasted 3.9 ± 2.3 months (mean ± SD). 4.,Nests were located within 2,4 m of woody plants, in warm sites in the winter and cool sites in the summer. Both humidity and food availability influenced nest-site choice in laboratory colonies. However, when faced with a trade-off between factors, the ants chose humid nest boxes over nest boxes near food, and ants moved nests only in response to changes in humidity and not distance to food. 5.,The results indicate that L. humile colonies are seasonally polydomous, and that nest movements are driven by changes in microclimate. Colony organisation maintains high local density and increases food supply, which may improve the competitive ability of L. humile colonies and reduce opportunities for species coexistence. [source]

    Foraging for Work and Age-Based Polyethism: The Roles of Age and Previous Experience on Task Choice in Ants

    ETHOLOGY, Issue 11 2004
    Frederic Tripet
    In social insects, colonies commonly show temporal polyethism in worker behavior, such that a worker follows a predictable pattern of changes between tasks as it ages. This pattern usually leads from workers first doing a safe task like brood care, to ending their lives doing the most dangerous tasks like foraging. Two mechanisms could potentially underlie this pattern: (1) age-based task allocation, where the aging process itself predisposes workers to switch to more dangerous tasks; and (2) foraging for work, where ants switch to tasks that need doing from tasks which have too many associated workers. We tested the relative influence of these mechanisms by establishing nests of Camponotus floridanus with predetermined combinations of workers of known age and previous task specialization. The results supported both mechanisms. Nests composed of entirely brood-tending workers had the oldest workers preferentially switching to foraging. However, in nests initially composed entirely of foragers, the final distribution of tenders and foragers was not different from random task-switching and therefore supportive of foraging for work. Thus, it appears that in C. floridanus there is directionality to the mechanisms of task allocation. Switching to more dangerous tasks is age-influenced, but switching to less dangerous tasks is age-independent. The results also suggest that older workers are more flexible in their task choice behavior. Younger workers are more biased towards choosing within-nest tasks. Finally, there are effects of previous experience that tend to keep ants in familiar tasks. Task allocation based on several mechanisms may balance between: (1) concentrating the most worn workers into the most dangerous tasks; (2) increasing task performance levels; and (3) maintaining behavioral flexibility to respond to demographic perturbations. The degree to which behavior is flexible may correlate to the frequency of such perturbations in a species. [source]


    EVOLUTION, Issue 8 2004
    Richard Shine
    Abstract Viviparity (live bearing) has evolved from egg laying (oviparity) in many lineages of lizards and snakes, apparently in response to occupancy of cold climates. Explanations for this pattern have focused on the idea that behaviorally thermoregulating (sun-basking) pregnant female reptiles can maintain higher incubation temperatures for their embryos than would be available in nests under the soil surface. This is certainly true at very high elevations, where only viviparous species occur. However, comparisons of nest and lizard temperatures at sites close to the upper elevational limit for oviparous reptiles (presumably, the selective environment where the transition from oviparity to viviparity actually occurs) suggest that reproductive mode has less effect on mean incubation temperatures than on the diel distribution of those temperatures. Nests of the oviparous scincid lizard Bassiana duperreyi showed smooth diel cycles of heating and cooling. In contrast, body temperatures of the viviparous scincid Eulamprus heatwolei rose abruptly in the morning, were high and stable during daylight hours, and fell abruptly at night. Laboratory incubation experiments mimicking these patterns showed that developmental rates of eggs and phenotypic traits of hatchling B. duperreyi were sensitive to this type of thermal variance as well as to mean temperature. Hence, diel distributions as well as mean incubation temperatures may have played an important role in the selective forces for viviparity. More generally, variances as well as mean values of abiotic factors may constitute significant selective forces on life-history evolution. [source]

    Nest-site selection by Great Bustards Otis tarda suggests a trade-off between concealment and visibility

    IBIS, Issue 1 2010
    Great Bustards Otis tarda have expanded their habitat range from historical occupancy of natural steppes to arable farmland, where the species initially benefited from favourable feeding conditions. More recently, the species has suffered severe declines due partly to agricultural intensification. Nest losses and juvenile mortality are amongst the factors most seriously affecting survival probabilities of many populations of this endangered species, suggesting that management of nesting habitats would bring conservation benefits. We studied nest-site selection in a Great Bustard population of central Spain by radiotracking 42 females for periods of between 1 and 4 years. Females selected nest-sites in fallows or cereal fields, in areas of low patch-type diversity, far from human infrastructure, and with good horizontal visibility. These results suggest that females look for shelter, but also need to have good visibility while incubating, and they support the hypothesis that nest selection is a trade-off between concealment and visibility. We interpret both preferences as adaptations to reduce predation pressure, one of the main causes of nest failure in this species. Nests were placed on slopes significantly orientated to the southeast, which suggests that females also seek sites protected from the cold north-westerly winds that are prevalent in the study area. To reduce nest destruction, harvesting should be delayed as long as possible and habitat conservation measures should not be restricted to lek sites but also include nesting areas, which are frequently located far from leks. [source]

    Survival analysis of Little Penguin Eudyptula minor chicks on Motuara Island, New Zealand

    IBIS, Issue 4 2001
    Chick survival of Little Penguins Eudyptula minor was studied on predator-free Motuara Island, Cook Strait, New Zealand (41d,05'S, 174d,15'E), in 1995 and 1996. We used the Kaplan-Meier estimator and robust Cox regression to estimate chick survival rate (pL se) at 0.325 pL 0.044, leading to an estimated survival from laying to fledging of 0.13 or a reproductive output of 0.26 chicks per pair and breeding attempt. Starvation posed the greatest mortality risk, followed by unknown factors and rain. Risk of death due to rain was restricted to the guard stage, whereas starvation occurred throughout the nesting period, though with a peak in the early guard stage. Significant seasonal differences in survival rate were detected in both years, but with reversed trends, survival decreasing with the season in 1995 and increasing in 1996. Failure of adults to relieve their partner on the nest after chicks hatched accounted for 16% mortality or 34% of all chick deaths. Differences in chick survival rate between nest types were significant in 1995, a year with high rainfall, but not in 1996. Nests in the base of hollow trees had the highest chick survival rate. Of chicks in open nests - a nest type that is unusual for this species - 5.4% fledged. Our results suggest that on Motuara Island good breeding sites are scarce and that the food supply has been poor during the years of this study. [source]

    Breeding biology of White-rumped Tanagers in central Brazil

    Luane R. Dos Santos
    ABSTRACT White-rumped Tanagers (Cypsnagra hirundinacea) are widely distributed in northern Brazil, Bolivia, and Paraguay, and are classified as vulnerable in the state of Paraná and as endangered in the state of São Paulo, Brazil. Little is currently known about their breeding biology. We studied the breeding behavior of White-rumped Tanagers in the Cerrado (Neotropical savanna) in central Brazil from 2002 to 2007. The breeding period extended from mid-August to mid-December. Nests were cup-shaped and located mainly in trees of the genus Kielmeyera at a mean height of 3.7 ± 0.3 m (SE). Clutch sizes varied from one to three eggs and the incubation period lasted an average of 16.0 ± 0.3 d. Incubation was by females only and started with the laying of the first egg. Mean nest attentiveness (percent time on nests by females) was 64 ± 0.08%. Nestlings were fed by males, females, and, when present, helpers. The mean rate of food delivery rate to nests was 5.2 ± 0.4 items/h, with rates similar for males (mean = 2.7 ± 0.3 items/h) and females (mean = 2.4 ± 0.3 items/h). The mean duration of the nestling period was 12.1 ± 0.5 d. Compared to many temperate species of tanagers, White-rumped Tanagers in our study had relatively small clutches, low nest attentiveness, and long incubation periods. As with other tropical species, such characteristics might be due to food limitation or high rates of nest predation. RESUMEN Cypsnagra hirundinacea está ampliamente distribuida desde el norte de Brasil, Bolivia y Paraguay, y está clasificada como vulnerable en el estado de Paraná y en peligro en el estado de São Paulo, Brasil. Actualmente poco es conocido sobre su biología reproductiva. Estudiamos el comportamiento reproductivo de C. hirundinacea en el cerrado (Sabana Neotropical) en la región central de Brasil desde el 2002 hasta el 2007. El periodo reproductivo se extiende desde mediados de agosto hasta mediados de diciembre. Los nidos en forma de copa estaban localizados principalmente en arboles del genero Kielmeyera a una altura promedio de 3.7 ± 0.3 (ES) m. El tamaño de la nidada vario entre uno y tres huevos y el periodo de incubación duro en promedio 16 ± 0.3 días. La incubación fue realizada exclusivamente por la hembra y comenzó después de la puesta del primer huevo. El promedio de atención al nido (porcentaje del tiempo en el nido por parte de la hembra) fue de 64 ± 0.08%. Los polluelos fueron alimentados por el macho, la hembra y, cuando estaban presentes, ayudantes. El promedio de la tasa de alimentación al nido fue de 5.2 ± 0.4 viajes/hr, con tasas similares entre el macho (promedio = 2.7 ± 0.3 viajes/hr) y la hembra (promedio = 2.4 ± 0.3 viajes/hr). El promedio de duración del periodo de polluelos fue de 12.1 ± 0.5 días. Comparado con muchas especies de tangaras de la zona temperada, C. hirundinacea tiene una nidada relativamente pequeña, baja atención al nido y un periodo largo de incubación. Pero las diferencias con otras especies tropicales en estas variables se pueden deber a variación en la disponibilidad de alimento o altas tasa de depredación. [source]

    Nests, vocalizations, and conservation status of endangered Cochabamba Mountain-Finches (Compsospiza garleppi)

    Noemí Esther Huanca
    ABSTRACT Cochabamba Mountain-Finches (Compsospiza garleppi) are endangered residents of semihumid shrublands in the high Andes, with a range restricted to a few high valleys surrounding the city of Cochabamba, Bolivia. We examined the breeding behavior, feeding ecology, habitat requirements, vocalizations, and conservation status of Cochabamba Mountain-Finches from November 2006 to April 2007. We observed 10 nests of eight pairs, with nests found in a variety of small woody shrubs as well as bunchgrass and a ground bromeliad. Clutches (N= 2) consisted of one or two eggs, and all broods (N= 4) included one or two young. Our observations suggest that Cochabamba Mountain-Finches are not Polylepis specialists as previously thought, and use a diversity of native shrubs often associated with Polylepis woodlands for foraging and nesting. Pairs inhabited modified habitats where native vegetation and woodland edge persisted, but were not observed in closed canopy woodlands. Cochabamba Mountain-Finches frequently foraged on the edges of potato fields in a rural community and, at least occasionally, consumed parts of unearthed tubers. We recorded two previously unknown song types and three types of calls, and one song type was found to be useful for playback surveys. We recommend that future research and conservation actions include thorough surveys using playback to determine population sizes, and that habitat restoration projects focus on maintaining a diversity of native shrubs rather than only Polylepis trees. SINOPSIS Compsospiza garleppi es una especie residente en peligro de las tierras arbustivas semihúmedas de los altos Andes, con un rango restringido a unos pocos valles en los alrededores de la ciudad de Cochabamba, Bolivia. Nosotros examinamos el comportamiento reproductivo, la ecología alimentaria, los requerimientos de hábitat, vocalizaciones y estado de conservación de Compsospiza garleppi desde Noviembre 2006 hasta Abril 2007. Observamos 10 nidos de ocho parejas, los nidos fueron encontrados en una variedad de pequeños arbustos al igual que en montones de pastos y bromelias de suelo. La nidadas (N= 2) consistieron de uno o dos huevos y uno o dos polluelos (N= 4). Nuestras observaciones sugieren que Compsospiza garleppi no es un especialista de Polylepis como se había pensado anteriormente, y usa una diversidad de arbustos nativos asociados con bosques de Polylepis para buscar alimento y anidar. Se encontraron parejas en hábitat modificado en donde la vegetación nativa y los bordes de bosque persistieron, pero no fueron observadas en bosques con un dosel cerrado. Compsospiza garlepp busco alimento frecuentemente en los bordes de plantaciones de papa en una comunidad rural y, ocasionalmente, consumió partes de tubérculos desenterrados. Nosotros grabamos dos cantos no descritos anteriormente y tres tipos de llamados, un tipo de los cantos fue beneficioso para estudios de playback. Nosotros recomendamos que futuros estudios y acciones de conservación usen playback como herramienta para realizar censos minuciosos para determinar tamaños poblacionales, y que proyectos de restauración de hábitat se enfoquen en el mantenimiento de la diversidad de arbustos nativos en vez de únicamente mantener árboles de Polylepis. [source]

    Effects of nest-site characteristics and parental activity on cowbird parasitism and nest predation in Brown-and-yellow Marshbirds

    Walter S. Svagelj
    ABSTRACT Nest-site selection and nest defense are strategies for reducing the costs of brood parasitism and nest predation, two selective forces that can influence avian nesting success and fitness. During 2001,2002, we analyzed the effect of nest-site characteristics, nesting pattern, and parental activity on nest predation and brood parasitism by cowbirds (Molothrus spp.) in a population of Brown-and-yellow Marshbirds (Pseudoleistes virescens) in the Buenos Aires province, Argentina. We examined the possible effects of nest detectability, nest accessibility, and nest defense on rates of parasitism and nest predation. We also compared rates of parasitism and nest predation and nest survival time of marshbird nests during the egg stage (active nests) with those of the same nests artificially baited with passerine eggs after young fledged or nests failed (experimental nests). Most nests (45 of 48, or 94%) found during the building or laying stages were parasitized, and 79% suffered at least one egg-predation event. Cowbirds were responsible for most egg predation, with 82 of 107 (77%) egg-predation events corresponding to eggs punctured by cowbirds. Nests built in thistles had higher rates of parasitism and egg predation than nests in other plant, probably because cowbirds were most active in the area where thistles were almost the only available nesting substrate. Parasitism rates also tended to increase as the distance to conspecific nests increased, possibly due to cooperative mobbing and parental defense by marshbirds. The proportion of nests discovered by cowbirds was higher for active (95%) than for experimental (29%) nests, suggesting that cowbirds used host parental activity to locate nests. Despite active nest defense, parental activity did not affect either predation rates or nest-survival time. Thus, although nest defense by Brown-and-yellow Marshbirds appears to be based on cooperative group defense, such behavior did not reduce the impact of brood parasites and predators. RESUMEN La selección del sitio de nidificación y defensa del nido son estrategias que reducen los costos del parasitismo de cría y predación de nidos, dos fuerzas selectivas que pueden afectar el éxito reproductivo y la eficacia biológica de las aves. Durante 2001,2002, analizamos el efecto de las características del sitio de nidificación, patrón de nidificación, y actividad parental en la predación de nidos y parasitismo de cría por tordos (Molothrus spp.) en una población de Pseudoleistes virescens en la provincia de Buenos Aires, Argentina. Examinamos los posibles efectos de la detectabilidad, accesibilidad y defensa del nido en las tasas de parasitismo y depredación de nidos. Asimismo, se compararon las tasas de parasitismo, depredación, y tiempo de supervivencia de los nidos entre los estadios de huevo (nidos activos) con los de los mismos nidos cebados artificialmente con huevos de passerinos (nidos experimentales). La mayoría de los nidos (45 de 48, o 94%) hallados durante los estadios de construcción y puesta fueron parasitados, donde el 79% de los nidos sufrieron al menos un evento de predación de huevos. Los tordos fueron responsables de la mayoría de los eventos de predación de huevos, donde 82 de 107 (77%) eventos de predación correspondieron a huevos picados por tordos. Los nidos construidos en cardos tuvieron tasas de predación y parasitismo más altas que las correspondientes a nidos construidos en otros sustratos, probablemente debido a que los tordos exhiben una mayor actividad en el área donde los cardos son el único sustrato de nidificación disponible. La tasa de parasitismo mostró una tendencia a crecer con la distancia al nido más próximo, probablemente debido a la defensa parental y los despliegues de defensa comunales de Pseudoleistes virescens. La proporción de nidos descubiertos por tordos fue mayor para nidos activos (95%) que para nidos experimentales (29%), lo cual sugiere que los tordos utilizaron la actividad parental para detectar los nidos. A pesar de la activa defensa del nido, descubrimos que la actividad parental no afectó ni la tasa de predación ni el tiempo de supervivencia de los nidos. De esta forma, a pesar de que la defensa del nido en Pseudoleistes virescens aparenta estar basada en la defensa cooperativa grupal, tal comportamiento no redujo el impacto de los parásitos de cría o predadores de nidos. [source]

    Broods of attractive three-spined stickleback males require greater paternal care

    T. C. M. Bakker
    The relationship between egg number and survival in nests of three-spined sticklebacks Gasterosteus aculeatus was tested in the field. Nests were deprived of paternal care during a variable period by removal of the father while preventing egg predation by protection of the nest by a net. Upon male removal, a number of male traits were quantified. Nest-content variables and embryo survival were assessed at the end of the deprivation period. Proportional egg mortality was significantly positively correlated with the length of the deprivation period, the number of eggs present in the nest and egg size, thus suggesting that nests with more and larger eggs need more paternal care. Males with the most symmetrical ventral spines achieved the highest reproductive success as measured by the number of eggs in the nest. In addition, their nests contained relatively larger eggs. Spine length symmetry correlated with the blue intensity of the eye thus giving females several cues to assess male quality. [source]

    The biology of Roule's goby in the Kvarner area, northern Adriatic Sea

    M. Kova
    Roule's goby Gobius roulei in the Kvarner area of the northern Adriatic Sea attained , 87.5 mm LT and an age of 7 years. In both sexes gonad development began in their second year. All males were mature by 3 years, and females by 4 years. Fecundity was related to LT and varied between 1200 and 8000 eggs. The breeding season lasted from April to August. Nests were built under empty shells of Pitaria chione or stones. Roule's goby was a predator and picker, feeding mostly on mobile benthic fauna, including bivalves, gastropods, polychaets, pagurids, mysids, gammarids and fishes. Larger specimens ate mainly macrofauna, while smaller specimens ate both meiofauna and macrofauna. [source]

    Nest groups of wild bonobos at Wamba: selection of vegetation and tree species and relationships between nest group size and party size

    Mbangi N. Mulavwa
    Abstract We examined the location of nest groups, spatial distribution of nests within a nest group, and attributes of individual nests of wild bonobos at Wamba, Democratic Republic of Congo. We also examined the seasonal factors influencing nesting behavior and compared the nest group size with the 1,hr party size during daytime. We defined a nest group to be a cluster of nests that were built in the same evening and found within 30,m from the other nearest nest. Examination of the largest gap within a nest group suggested that 30,m was an acceptable cutoff value. Monthly rainfall or fruit abundance did not significantly influence the monthly mean nest group size. Nests were built in the swamp forest for as many as 13% observation days, suggesting the need for reevaluation of the use of swamp forest by bonobos. The use of swamp forest was influenced not by seasonal rainfall or fruit abundance, but by the fruiting of specific species. Preferred tree species for building nests accounted for 19.8% of standing trees, which suggested that the selection of sleeping sites was not largely restricted by the distribution of specific species. The mean 1,hr party size was almost identical through the day and was similar to the mean nest group size. Parties of bonobos sometimes split into smaller nest groups, especially when feeding on non-preferred fruits during fruit scarcity. By contrast, when feeding on preferred fruits while ranging in large parties, they often aggregated to form even larger nest groups. When sleeping in small- or middle-sized nest groups, they tended to aggregate the next morning. These tendencies may reflect the gregarious nature of bonobos who prefer to range or sleep together as far as circumstances allow. Am. J. Primatol. 72:575,586, 2010. © 2010 Wiley-Liss, Inc. [source]

    The Importance of Where to Dump the Refuse: Seed Banks and Fine Roots in Nests of the Leaf-Cutting Ants Atta cephalotes and A. colombica,

    BIOTROPICA, Issue 1 2000
    Alejandro G. Farji-Brener
    ABSTRACT The location of the nutrient-rich organic refuse produced by a leaf-cutting ant colony varies among ant species. Atta cephalotes locate their organic refuse in subterranean chambers, whereas A. colombica place their organic refuse on the soil surface near the nest. We studied the effect of the absence or presence of external organic refuse on the abundance of fine roots and seed bank composition in the superficial horizons of ant nests. We sampled soils from ant nests or dumps and adjacent areas of 15 adult nests of A. cephalotes at La Selva (LS), Costa Rica, and of 15 of A. colombica nests on Barro Colorado Island (BCI), Panama. Soils from A. cephalotes nests did not differ from adjacent soils in abundance of fine-root and seed diversity. In contrast, organic refuse from A. colombica nests was less diverse in seed composition (due to the great abundance of Miconia argentea) and had a greater abundance of fine roots than adjacent areas. Thus the external location of the ant-nest organic refuse is potentially important in determining the different types of plant recolonization in abandoned or dead ant nests. The relative abundance of these Atta species may influence the structure and/or composition of tropical forests. RESUMEN En las hormigas cortadoras de hojas, la ubicación de los desechos orgánicos ricos en nutrientes producidos por el hongo que cultivan varía segun la especie. Mientras Atta cephalotesubica sus desechos orgánicos en cámaras subterráncas, A. colombicalos coloca sobre la superficie del suelo cerca del nido. Nosotros estudiamos el efecto de la presencia o ausencia de desechos orgánicos externos sobre la abundancia de raíces finas y la composición del banco de semillas en los suelos superficiales cerca de los hormigueros. Para ello sacamos muestras de basureros o suelo superficial en 15 nidos y areas adjacentes de A. cephalotesen La Selva (LS), Costa Rica, y en 15 nidos de A. colombica ubicados en Barro Colorado (BCI), Panamá. Los suelos de A. cephalotesno difirieron de los suelos adjacentes en abundancia de raíces finas ni en la diversidad de semillas. Por el contrario, los desechos orgánicos externos en nidos de A. colombicafueron menos diversos en composición de semillas (debido principalmente a la gran dominancia de Miconia argentea) y tuvieron una mayor concentración de raices finas que los suelos adyacentes. La ubicación de los desechos es poten-cialmente importance en determinar los diferentes tipos de plantas que pueden recolonizar los nidos abandonados o muertos. Por lo tanto, la abundancia relativa de estas especies de Atta pueden influir en la estructura y/composicion de los bosques tropicales. [source]

    Designing mouse behavioral tasks relevant to autistic-like behaviors,

    Jacqueline N. Crawley
    Abstract The importance of genetic factors in autism has prompted the development of mutant mouse models to advance our understanding of biological mechanisms underlying autistic behaviors. Mouse models of human neuropsychiatric diseases are designed to optimize (1) face validity, i.e., resemblance to the human symptoms; (2) construct validity, i.e., similarity to the underlying causes of the disease; and (3) predictive validity, i.e., expected responses to treatments that are effective in the human disease. There is a growing need for mouse behavioral tasks with all three types of validity for modeling the symptoms of autism. We are in the process of designing a set of tasks with face validity for the defining features of autism: deficits in appropriate reciprocal social interactions, deficits in verbal social communication, and high levels of ritualistic repetitive behaviors. Social approach is tested in an automated three-chambered apparatus that offers the subject a choice between a familiar environment, a novel environment, and a novel environment containing a stranger mouse. Preference for social novelty is tested in the same apparatus, with a choice between the start chamber, the chamber containing a familiar mouse, and the chamber containing a stranger mouse. Social communication is evaluated by measuring the ultrasonic distress vocalizations emitted by infant mouse pups and the parental response of retrieving the pup to the nest. Resistance to change in ritualistic repetitive behaviors is modeled by forcing a change in habit, including reversal of the spatial location of a reinforcer in a T-maze task and in the Morris water maze. Mouse behavioral tasks that may model additional features of autism are discussed, including tasks relevant to anxiety, seizures, sleep disturbances, and sensory hypersensitivity. Applications of these tests include (1) behavioral phenotyping of transgenic and knockout mice with mutations in genes relevant to autism, (2) characterization of mutant mice derived from random chemical mutagenesis, (3) DNA microarray analyses of genes in inbred strains of mice that differ in social interaction, social communication and resistance to change in habit, and (4) evaluation of proposed therapeutics for the treatment of autism. Published 2004 Wiley-Liss, Inc. MRDD Research Reviews 2004;10:248,258. [source]

    Age- and subcaste-related patterns of serotonergic immunoreactivity in the optic lobes of the ant Pheidole dentata

    Marc A. Seid
    Abstract Serotonin, a biogenic amine known to be a neuromodulator of insect behavior, has recently been associated with age-related patterns of task performance in the ant Pheidole dentata. We identified worker age- and subcaste-related patterns of serotonergic activity within the optic lobes of the P. dentata brain to further examine its relationship to polyethism. We found strong immunoreactivity in the optic lobes of the brains of both minor and major workers. Serotonergic cell bodies in the optic lobes increased significantly in number as major and minor workers matured. Old major workers had greater numbers of serotonergic cell bodies than minors of a similar age. This age-related increase in serotonergic immunoreactivity, as well as the presence of diffuse serotonin networks in the mushroom bodies, antennal lobes, and central complex, occurs concomitantly with an increase in the size of worker task repertoires. Our results suggest that serotonin is associated with the development of the visual system, enabling the detection of task-related stimuli outside the nest, thus playing a significant role in worker behavioral development and colony-wide division of labor. © 2008 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Develop Neurobiol, 2008. [source]

    Olfactory learning in the rat immediately after birth: Unique salience of first odors

    Stacie S. Miller
    Abstract An infant rat's chance of survival is increased when it remains close to the nest. Early olfactory learning supports such adaptive behavior. Previous experiments indicated that non-associative odor exposure immediately after birth promoted later attachment to a similarly scented artificial nipple. The goal of the current experiments was to extend these findings on olfactory learning in the hours after birth by: exposing pups to more than one odor exposure (Experiment 1), dissecting the role of timing versus order of odor exposure (Experiment 2), testing the odor specificity of these effects (Experiments 3 and 4), and evaluating associative odor conditioning soon after birth (Experiment 5). Without explicit prior odor experience, pups only hours old do not respond much to a novel odor. Prior non-associative odor experience increases later motor activity to that same odor and to novel odors. Furthermore, these findings may be specific to certain amodal dimensions of the (in our case) lemon odor exposure. Single odor non-associative and associative conditioning was equally effective immediately after birth and during the third postnatal hour. Nevertheless, pups given two mere odor exposures responded to the first one more than the second at test, regardless of whether the exposures began immediately or 2,hr after birth. Possible mechanisms for these findings concerning early olfactory learning are discussed. © 2009 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Dev Psychobiol 51: 488,504, 2009 [source]

    Olfactory preference for own mother and litter in 1-day-old rabbits and its impairment by thermotaxis

    Jessica Serra
    Abstract We investigated the ability of rabbit pups to display preferences towards various elements of their postnatal environment during the stage of confinement in the nest. Subjects were submitted to a two-choice test during the first week after birth to assess if they could detect and discriminate between does, litters of pups, or nesting materials of the same developmental stage. On D1 and D7, pups were attracted to any lactating doe, litter, or nest when compared to an empty compartment. When two stimuli were opposed, pups preferred their own nest to an alien one on D1 and D7 but not their mother nor their siblings when opposed to alien does or pups. However, additional tests indicated that this lack of preference for kin conspecifics resulted from a predominant attraction to thermal cues over individual odors. Indeed, pups were strongly attracted to a warm compartment (37°C) than to a cooler one (20°C) and once thermal cues were controlled for in the testing situation, the pups were specifically attracted to odors of their own mother's hair and of their siblings. No preference was observed towards the mother's uterine secretions. In conclusion, pups can recognize olfactory cues emanating from their mother and their siblings the day after birth. The preference for nesting materials would reflect in major part the combined attraction to maternal and sibling odors present in the nest. © 2008 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Dev Psychobiol 50: 542,553, 2008. [source]

    Effects of neonatal novelty exposure on sexual behavior, fear, and stress-response in adult rats

    Fernando Benetti
    Abstract Environmental stimuli in early life may result in permanent behavioral and physiological changes. Present study evaluated the effects of exposing pups to a novel environment on behaviors (open-field test and sexual behavior) and prolactin stress-responses in adult male rats. Half of a litter was daily removed outside (OUT) from the nest and stimulated by handling for 3 min, while the other half remained inside (IN) the nest and was also handled for the same period during the first 10 days postpartum. Maternal behavior after all the pups were returned to the nest was not different between IN and OUT littermates. In adulthood, OUT males showed increased general and central locomotion activity in the open-field test, reduced sexual behavior, and attenuated prolactin secretion in response to restraint stress compared with the IN littermates. The repeated exposition of rat pups to a novel environment is a causal factor for the long-lasting behavioral and endocrine changes. The premature exposition of the pup to unfamiliar environments decreases fear and stress-response, and also reduces sexual behavior. We suggest that the absence of the odor of the mother may be crucial to explain the effects detected in adulthood. © 2007 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Dev Psychobiol 49: 258,264, 2007. [source]

    Maternal and littermate deprivation disrupts maternal behavior and social-learning of food preference in adulthood: Tactile stimulation, nest odor, and social rearing prevent these effects

    Angel I. Melo
    Abstract Maternal and littermate (social) separation, through artificial rearing (AR), disrupts the development of subsequent maternal behavior and social learning in rats. The addition of maternal-licking-like stimulation during AR, partially reverses some of these effects. However, little is know about the role of social stimuli from littermates and nest odors during the preweaning period, in the development of the adult maternal behavior and social learning. The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of peer- and peer-and-odor rearing on the development of maternal behavior and social learning in rats. Female pups were reared with mothers (mother reared,MR) or without mothers (AR) from postnatal day (PND) 3. AR rats received three different treatments: (1) AR-CONTROL group received minimal tactile stimulation, (2) AR-ODOR females received exposure to maternal nest material inside the AR-isolation-cup environment, (3) AR-SOCIAL group was reared in the cup with maternal nest material and a conspecific of the same-age and same-sex and received additional tactile stimulation. MR females were reared by their mothers in the nest and with conspecifics. In adulthood, rats were tested for maternal behavior towards their own pups and in a social learning task. Results confirm our previous report that AR impairs performance of maternal behavior and the development of a social food preference. Furthermore, social cues from a littermate, in combination with tactile stimulation and the nest odor, reversed the negative effects of complete isolation (AR-CONTROL) on some of the above behaviors. Exposure to the odor alone also had effects on some of these olfactory-mediated behaviors. These studies indicate that social stimulation from littermates during the preweaning period, in combination with odor from the nest and tactile stimulation, contributes to the development of affiliative behaviors. © 2006 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Dev Psyshobiol 48: 209,219, 2006. [source]

    Ontogeny of urine preference and its relationship to NH4Cl preference and sodium hunger in suckling rat pups

    Micah Leshem
    Abstract We chart the postnatal ontogeny of urine preference in the suckling rat. Twelve-day-old sucklings, when offered urine, NH4Cl, or NaCl, ingest more urine and NH4Cl than NaCl. When rendered sodium hungry by ivc renin or by sodium depletion, these sucklings prefer urine and NH4Cl to NaCl, dilute urine, or an NaCl and KCl mineral mix equimolar to urine; however, by 18 days of age, urine and NH4Cl are no longer preferred to NaCl. Hence, urine preference in the suckling may be specific and preparatory for the variety of purposes urine preference serves in the adult rat, and it might guide the pup to urinary sodium in the nest. Since preference for urine and NH4Cl covary during postnatal development, the high preference for NH4Cl in midterm sucklings might be because its ammonium flavor is similar to urine. © 2005 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Dev Psychobiol 46: 111,117, 2005. [source]

    Cholecystokinin receptor antagonists increase the rat pup's preference toward maternal-odor and rug texture

    Michal Shayit
    Abstract The role of the cholecystokinin (CCK) system in mediating the infant's natural preferences toward maternal-related stimuli was examined by peripheral administration of selective CCKA and CCKB receptor antagonists (Devazepide and L-365,260, respectively) to 11,12-day-old rats and presenting them with a 3-minute preference test. In Experiment 1, the choice was between two floor textures, rug and plywood; the time spent on the relatively preferred side (rug) was measured. In Experiment 2, the odor of maternal faces emanated from one end of the test arena; time spent near that end was measured. These sensory stimuli were chosen as they represent olfactory and tactile aspects of the dam and nest. Compared to controls, both CCK receptor antagonists selectively increased the time spent on the preferred side, in both experiments, without affecting axillary temperature or locomotor activity. The results suggest that CCK may mediate and attenuate the infant's attraction toward naturally preferred stimuli. © 2001 John Wiley & Sons, Inc. Dev Psychobiol 38: 164,173, 2001 [source]

    Solid cell nest in fine-needle aspiration of goiter

    Moisey Moldavsky M.D.
    No abstract is available for this article. [source]

    Correlation of fluorescence and electron microscopy of F-actin-containing sensory cells in the epidermis of Convoluta pulchra (Platyhelminthes: Acoela)

    ACTA ZOOLOGICA, Issue 1 2002
    R Pfistermüller
    Abstract Phalloidin-stained whole mounts of acoel turbellarians show brightly fluorescing club-shaped structures distributed over the epidermis and concentrated especially at the anterior and posterior tips of the body. By correlating electron micrographic images and fluorescence images of Convoluta pulchra, these structures can be seen to be sensory receptors with a central cilium surrounded by a collar of microvilli. The other candidate for showing fluorescence in the epidermis, namely gland necks, can be ruled out since their distribution is too dense to resemble the distribution of the fluorescent structures seen here. The collared sensory receptors were inserted between epidermal cells, and each bore a central cilium surrounded by a collar of 6,18 microvilli and an additional centrally positioned 2,7 microvilli of which 2 or 3 were associated with a modified rootlet called the swallow's nest. Confocal scanning laser microscopy resolved the core of actin filaments within the microvilli of the collar and their rootlet-like connections to the base of the sensory cell. Such receptors could also be identified by fluorescence microscopy in several other species of acoel turbellarians. [source]

    Temperature and hen harrier productivity: from local mechanisms to geographical patterns

    ECOGRAPHY, Issue 5 2002
    S. M. Redpath
    Climate is an important factor limiting demography and distribution patterns in many organisms. For species with a broad geographical distribution, the mechanism by which climate influences demography is likely to vary dramatically from one end of the range to the other. In this paper we first assess, in a Scottish population of hen harriers Circus cyaneus, how temperature and rainfall influence adult behaviour and chick mortality patterns at the nest. We then test for associations between harrier productivity and weather across Scotland, towards the northern edge of the range, and Spain, towards the southern edge of the range. We show that during the nestling period, female brooding time increased in cold weather. Male provisioning rate was negatively related to temperature and rainfall. Chick mortality increased in cold temperatures and was most likely to occur at nests where male prey delivery rates were low relative to temperature. Annual values of harrier fledged brood size across Scotland were positively related to summer temperature suggesting that the patterns seen in one population held at a national scale. In Spain, however, the opposite patterns were observed with fledged brood size being negatively related to temperature. This shows that whilst the impact of weather on productivity may be equally strong at two ends of a geographical range, the mechanisms vary dramatically. Large-scale predictive models need to take such patterns into account. [source]

    Arboreal substrates influence foraging in tropical ants

    1. Physically complex substrates impart significant costs on cursorial central-place foragers in terms of time spent outside the nest and total distance travelled. Ants foraging in trees navigate varied surfaces to access patchy resources, thus providing an appropriate model system for examining interactions between foraging efficiency and substrates. 2. We expected that the speed of recruitment, body size distribution and species richness of foraging arboreal ants would differ predictably among common substrate types occurring on tropical tree trunks. We measured changes in ant abundance and species composition over time at baits placed on bare tree bark, moss-covered bark, and vine-like vegetation appressed to bark. We also measured average body size and body size frequency on the three substrate types. Ants discovered baits sooner and accumulated at baits relatively faster when using vine substrates as the primary foraging trail. Average body size was smaller on vine substrates than on bark. Experimental removal of vine and moss substrates nullified these differences. Contrary to our predictions, species richness and body size distributions did not differ among the three substrate types, due in part to the frequent presence of a few common ground-nesting species at baits on bare bark. 3. Our results collectively indicate that linear substrates facilitate access of foraging ants to patchy resources. Ant use of vine-like substrates appears to be opportunistic; vine use is not confined to certain species nor constrained by body size. [source]

    Forage collection, substrate preparation, and diet composition in fungus-growing ants

    1. Variation and control of nutritional input is an important selective force in the evolution of mutualistic interactions and may significantly affect coevolutionary modifications in partner species. 2. The attine fungus-growing ants are a tribe of more than 230 described species (12 genera) that use a variety of different substrates to manure the symbiotic fungus they cultivate inside the nest. Common ,wisdom' is that the conspicuous leaf-cutting ants primarily use freshly cut plant material, whereas most of the other attine species use dry and partly degraded plant material such as leaf litter and caterpillar frass, but systematic comparative studies of actual resource acquisition across the attine ants have not been done. 3. Here we review 179 literature records of diet composition across the extant genera of fungus-growing ants. The records confirm the dependence of leaf-cutting ants on fresh vegetation but find that flowers, dry plant debris, seeds (husks), and insect frass are used by all genera, whereas other substrates such as nectar and insect carcasses are only used by some. 4. Diet composition was significantly correlated with ant substrate preparation behaviours before adding forage to the fungus garden, indicating that diet composition and farming practices have co-evolved. Neither diet nor preparation behaviours changed when a clade within the paleoattine genus Apterostigma shifted from rearing leucocoprinous fungi to cultivating pterulaceous fungi, but the evolutionary derived transition to yeast growing in the Cyphomyrmex rimosus group, which relies almost exclusively on nectar and insect frass, was associated with specific changes in diet composition. 5. The co-evolutionary transitions in diet composition across the genera of attine ants indicate that fungus-farming insect societies have the possibility to obtain more optimal fungal crops via artificial selection, analogous to documented practice in human subsistence farming. [source]