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9 October 2017

DNA metabarcoding and morphological macroinvertebrate metrics reveal the same changes in boreal watersheds across an environmental gradient [Scientific Reports]

Keywords : DNA sequencing, environmental impact, forestry, freshwater ecology, Next-generation sequencing

Cost-effective, ecologically relevant, sensitive, and standardized indicators are requisites of biomonitoring. DNA metabarcoding of macroinvertebrate communities is a potentially transformative biomonitoring technique that can reduce cost and time constraints while providing information-rich, high resolution taxonomic data for the assessment of watershed condition. Here, we assess the utility of DNA metabarcoding to provide aquatic indicator data for evaluation of forested watershed condition across Canadian eastern boreal watersheds, subject to natural variation and low-intensity harvest management. (...)

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6 October 2017

A worldwide survey of neonicotinoids in honey [Science]

Subjects : chemistry, ecology

Growing evidence for global pollinator decline is causing concern for biodiversity conservation and ecosystem services maintenance. Neonicotinoid pesticides have been identified or suspected as a key factor responsible for this decline. We assessed the global exposure of pollinators to neonicotinoids by analyzing 198 honey samples from across the world. We found at least one of five tested compounds (acetamiprid, clothianidin, imidacloprid, thiacloprid, and thiamethoxam) in 75% of all samples, 45% of samples contained two or more of these compounds, and 10% contained four or five.(...)

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6 October 2017

The influence of environmental factors on the upstream movements of rheophilic cyprinids according to their position in a river basin [Ecology of Freshwater Fish]

Keywords : behaviour, fish pass, holobiotic potamodromous, movement, spawning

Throughout their lives, fish accomplish frequent movements between functional habitats that are often triggered by environmental signals. We aimed to determine if rheophilic cyprinids (barbel, Barbus barbus and chub Squalius cephalus), living in different places of the same river basin, may develop similar movement periodicities and react identically to environmental cues to carry out their spawning migration. We used the capture data of three modern fish passes that were monitored continuously during three consecutive years (2010 to 2012) in three rivers of the Meuse basin in Belgium. We captured 418 individuals at adult stage, and the capture number per species was greater (80%) in spring (during the spawning migration period).(...)

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4 October 2017

Diversity-dependent temporal divergence of ecosystem functioning in experimental ecosystems [Nature Ecology & Evolution]

The effects of biodiversity on ecosystem functioning generally increase over time, but the underlying processes remain unclear. Using 26 long-term grassland and forest experimental ecosystems, we demonstrate that biodiversity–ecosystem functioning relationships strengthen mainly by greater increases in functioning in high-diversity communities in grasslands and forests. In grasslands, biodiversity effects also strengthen due to decreases in functioning in low-diversity communities. Contrasting trends across grasslands are associated with differences in soil characteristics.

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3 October 2017

Network structure embracing mutualism–antagonism continuums increases community robustness [Nature Ecology & Evolution]

Keywords : community ecology, ecological networks

Theory predicts that contrasting properties of mutualistic and antagonistic networks differentially promote community resilience to species loss. However, the outcome of most ecological interactions falls within a continuum between mutualism and antagonism, and we ignore the extent to which this interactions’ continuum might influence community stability. Using a large data set of interactions, we compared co-extinction cascades that either consider or ignore the mix of beneficial and detrimental actions that parrots exert on plants.(...)

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