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Find video protocols related to scientific articles indexed in Pubmed.
BIOFRAG - a new database for analyzing BIOdiversity responses to forest FRAGmentation.
Ecol Evol
PUBLISHED: 02-10-2014
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Habitat fragmentation studies have produced complex results that are challenging to synthesize. Inconsistencies among studies may result from variation in the choice of landscape metrics and response variables, which is often compounded by a lack of key statistical or methodological information. Collating primary datasets on biodiversity responses to fragmentation in a consistent and flexible database permits simple data retrieval for subsequent analyses. We present a relational database that links such field data to taxonomic nomenclature, spatial and temporal plot attributes, and environmental characteristics. Field assessments include measurements of the response(s) (e.g., presence, abundance, ground cover) of one or more species linked to plots in fragments within a partially forested landscape. The database currently holds 9830 unique species recorded in plots of 58 unique landscapes in six of eight realms: mammals 315, birds 1286, herptiles 460, insects 4521, spiders 204, other arthropods 85, gastropods 70, annelids 8, platyhelminthes 4, Onychophora 2, vascular plants 2112, nonvascular plants and lichens 320, and fungi 449. Three landscapes were sampled as long-term time series (>10 years). Seven hundred and eleven species are found in two or more landscapes. Consolidating the substantial amount of primary data available on biodiversity responses to fragmentation in the context of land-use change and natural disturbances is an essential part of understanding the effects of increasing anthropogenic pressures on land. The consistent format of this database facilitates testing of generalizations concerning biologic responses to fragmentation across diverse systems and taxa. It also allows the re-examination of existing datasets with alternative landscape metrics and robust statistical methods, for example, helping to address pseudo-replication problems. The database can thus help researchers in producing broad syntheses of the effects of land use. The database is dynamic and inclusive, and contributions from individual and large-scale data-collection efforts are welcome.
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Cyatta abscondita: Taxonomy, Evolution, and Natural History of a New Fungus-Farming Ant Genus from Brazil.
PLoS ONE
PUBLISHED: 01-01-2013
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Cyatta abscondita, a new genus and species of fungus-farming ant from Brazil, is described based on morphological study of more than 20 workers, two dealate gynes, one male, and two larvae. Ecological field data are summarized, including natural history, nest architecture, and foraging behavior. Phylogenetic analyses of DNA sequence data from four nuclear genes indicate that Cyatta abscondita is the distant sister taxon of the genus Kalathomyrmex, and that together they comprise the sister group of the remaining neoattine ants, an informal clade that includes the conspicuous and well-known leaf-cutter ants. Morphologically, Cyatta abscondita shares very few obvious character states with Kalathomyrmex. It does, however, possess a number of striking morphological features unique within the fungus-farming tribe Attini. It also shares morphological character states with taxa that span the ancestral node of the Attini. The morphology, behavior, and other biological characters of Cyatta abscondita are potentially informative about plesiomorphic character states within the fungus-farming ants and about the early evolution of ant agriculture.
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Attack frequency and the tolerance to herbivory of Neotropical savanna trees.
Oecologia
PUBLISHED: 07-13-2011
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Tolerance is the ability of a plant to regrow or reproduce following damage. While experimental studies typically measure tolerance in response to the intensity of herbivory (i.e., the amount of leaf tissue removed in one attack), the impact of how many times plants are attacked during a growing season (i.e., the frequency of damage) is virtually unexplored. Using experimental defoliations that mimicked patterns of attack by leaf-cutter ants (Atta spp.), we examined how the frequency of herbivory influenced plant tolerance traits in six tree species in Brazils Cerrado. For 2 years we quantified how monthly and quarterly damage influenced individual survivorship, relative growth rate, plant architecture, flowering, and foliar chemistry. We found that the content of leaf nitrogen (N) increased among clipped individuals of most species, suggesting that Atta influences the allocation of resources in damaged plants. Furthermore, our clipping treatments affected tree architecture in ways thought to promote tolerance. However, none of our focal species exhibited a compensatory increase in growth (increment in trunk diameter) in response to herbivory as relative growth rates were significantly lower in clipped than in unclipped individuals. In addition, the probability of survival was much lower for clipped plants, and lower for plants clipped monthly than those clipped quarterly. For plants that did survive, simulated herbivory dramatically reduced the probability of flowering. Our results were similar across a phylogenetically distinct suite of species, suggesting a potential extendability of these findings to other plant species in this system.
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Nesting biology and fungiculture of the fungus-growing ant, Mycetagroicus cerradensis: new light on the origin of higher attine agriculture.
J. Insect Sci.
PUBLISHED: 04-30-2011
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The genus Mycetagroicus is perhaps the least known of all fungus-growing ant genera, having been first described in 2001 from museum specimens. A recent molecular phylogenetic analysis of the fungus-growing ants demonstrated that Mycetagroicus is the sister to all higher attine ants (Trachymyrmex, Sericomyrmex, Acromyrmex, Pseudoatta, and Atta), making it of extreme importance for understanding the transition between lower and higher attine agriculture. Four nests of Mycetagroicus cerradensis near Uberlândia, Minas Gerais, Brazil were excavated, and fungus chambers for one were located at a depth of 3.5 meters. Based on its lack of gongylidia (hyphal-tip swellings typical of higher attine cultivars), and a phylogenetic analysis of the ITS rDNA gene region, M. cerradensis cultivates a lower attine fungus in Clade 2 of lower attine (G3) fungi. This finding refines a previous estimate for the origin of higher attine agriculture, an event that can now be dated at approximately 21-25 mya in the ancestor of extant species of Trachymyrmex and Sericomyrmex.
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Asymmetric dispersal and colonization success of Amazonian plant-ants queens.
PLoS ONE
PUBLISHED: 02-22-2011
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The dispersal ability of queens is central to understanding ant life-history evolution, and plays a fundamental role in ant population and community dynamics, the maintenance of genetic diversity, and the spread of invasive ants. In tropical ecosystems, species from over 40 genera of ants establish colonies in the stems, hollow thorns, or leaf pouches of specialized plants. However, little is known about the relative dispersal ability of queens competing for access to the same host plants.
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Canopy connectivity and the availability of diverse nesting resources affect species coexistence in arboreal ants.
J Anim Ecol
PUBLISHED: 11-30-2010
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1.?Arboreal ants are both diverse and ecologically dominant in the tropics. Such ecologically important groups are likely to be particularly useful in ongoing empirical efforts to understand the processes that regulate species diversity and coexistence. 2.?Our study addresses how access to tree-based resources and the diversity of pre-existing nesting cavities affect species diversity and coexistence in tropical arboreal ant assemblages. We focus on assemblage-level responses to these variables at local scales. We first surveyed arboreal ant diversity across three naturally occurring levels of canopy connectivity and a gradient of tree size. We then conducted whole-tree experimental manipulations of canopy connectivity and the diversity of cavity entrance sizes. All work was conducted in the Brazilian savanna or cerrado. 3.?Our survey suggested that species richness was equivalent among levels of connectivity. However, there was a consistent trend of lower species density with low canopy connectivity. This was confirmed at the scale of individual trees, with low-connectivity trees having significantly fewer species across all tree sizes. Our experiment demonstrated directly that low canopy connectivity results in significantly fewer species coexisting per tree. 4.?A diverse array of cavity entrance sizes did not significantly increase overall species per tree. Nevertheless, cavity diversity did significantly increase the species using new cavities on each tree, the species per tree unique to new cavities, total species using new cavities, and total cavity use. The populations of occupied cavities were consistent with newly founded colonies and new nests of established colonies from other trees. Cavity diversity thus appears to greatly affect new colony founding and colony growth. 5.?These results contribute strong evidence that greater resource access and greater cavity diversity have positive effects on species coexistence in local arboreal ant assemblages. More generally, these positive effects are broadly consistent with niche differentiation promoting local species coexistence in diverse arboreal ant assemblages. The contributions of this study to the understanding of the processes of species coexistence are discussed, along with the potential of the focal system for future work on this issue.
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Canopy and litter ant assemblages share similar climate-species density relationships.
Biol. Lett.
PUBLISHED: 05-12-2010
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Tropical forest canopies house most of the globes diversity, yet little is known about global patterns and drivers of canopy diversity. Here, we present models of ant species density, using climate, abundance and habitat (i.e. canopy versus litter) as predictors. Ant species density is positively associated with temperature and precipitation, and negatively (or non-significantly) associated with two metrics of seasonality, precipitation seasonality and temperature range. Ant species density was significantly higher in canopy samples, but this difference disappeared once abundance was considered. Thus, apparent differences in species density between canopy and litter samples are probably owing to differences in abundance-diversity relationships, and not differences in climate-diversity relationships. Thus, it appears that canopy and litter ant assemblages share a common abundance-diversity relationship influenced by similar but not identical climatic drivers.
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Long-term persistence of a neotropical ant-plant population in the absence of obligate plant-ants.
Ecology
PUBLISHED: 09-23-2009
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Interactions between ants and ant-plants are considered classic examples of obligate mutualisms. Previous studies have indicated that for many ant-plants the loss of ant colonies results in severe defoliation or mortality. Although individual plants can persist for some period of time without their mutualistic partners, to date populations of ant-free plants have only been recorded at high altitudes or on remote islands where herbivores are also scarce. We studied the interaction between ants, herbivores, and the ant-plant Tococa guianensis in the Cerrado region of central Brazil. Using a survey conducted across a large geographic region, we show that there is interpopulation variation in ant occupancy across sites and habitats. At most sites surveyed, plants were inhabited by Allomerus octoarticulatus, an obligate plant-ant. Plants with obligate ants had significantly lower standing levels of herbivore damage than plants with opportunistic ants and plants with no ant occupants. Furthermore, experimental removal of A. octoarticulatus resulted in increased levels of damage in both young and mature leaves. Despite the protection provided by obligate ants, populations of T. guianensis were found to persist without these ants in some areas. Plants without A. octoarticulatus had significantly greater leaf toughness and trichome density than those with A. octoarticulatus. Furthermore, trichome density in plants with A. octoarticulatus increased after ants were removed, probably as a response induced by increased levels of herbivore damage. To our knowledge, this is the first record of the occurrence of native myrmecophyte populations without their mutualistic ants in mainland low-elevation sites. Several factors may help to explain the long-term persistence of T. guianensis populations without plant-ants in some areas of the Brazilian Cerrado, including its potential for induced morphological defenses against insect herbivores and selection for increased levels of constitutive defenses. In addition, T. guianensis may be under lower herbivore pressure in the sites we studied than in other parts of its range because existing populations were small, isolated, and some were very close to the edge of this species distribution.
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Dynamics of the leaf-litter arthropod fauna following fire in a neotropical woodland savanna.
PLoS ONE
PUBLISHED: 07-28-2009
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Fire is an important agent of disturbance in tropical savannas, but relatively few studies have analyzed how soil-and-litter dwelling arthropods respond to fire disturbance despite the critical role these organisms play in nutrient cycling and other biogeochemical processes. Following the incursion of a fire into a woodland savanna ecological reserve in Central Brazil, we monitored the dynamics of litter-arthropod populations for nearly two years in one burned and one unburned area of the reserve. We also performed a reciprocal transplant experiment to determine the effects of fire and litter type on the dynamics of litter colonization by arthropods. Overall arthropod abundance, the abundance of individual taxa, the richness of taxonomic groups, and the species richness of individual taxa (Formiciade) were lower in the burned site. However, both the ordinal-level composition of the litter arthropod fauna and the species-level composition of the litter ant fauna were not dramatically different in the burned and unburned sites. There is evidence that seasonality of rainfall interacts with fire, as differences in arthropod abundance and diversity were more pronounced in the dry than in the wet season. For many taxa the differences in abundance between burned and unburned sites were maintained even when controlling for litter availability and quality. In contrast, differences in abundance for Collembola, Formicidae, and Thysanoptera were only detected in the unmanipulated samples, which had a lower amount of litter in the burned than in the unburned site throughout most of our study period. Together these results suggest that arthropod density declines in fire-disturbed areas as a result of direct mortality, diminished resources (i.e., reduced litter cover) and less favorable microclimate (i.e., increased litter desiccation due to reduction in tree cover). Although these effects were transitory, there is evidence that the increasingly prevalent fire return interval of only 1-2 years may jeopardize the long-term conservation of litter arthropod communities.
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Climatic drivers of hemispheric asymmetry in global patterns of ant species richness.
Ecol. Lett.
PUBLISHED: 03-19-2009
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Although many taxa show a latitudinal gradient in richness, the relationship between latitude and species richness is often asymmetrical between the northern and southern hemispheres. Here we examine the latitudinal pattern of species richness across 1003 local ant assemblages. We find latitudinal asymmetry, with southern hemisphere sites being more diverse than northern hemisphere sites. Most of this asymmetry could be explained statistically by differences in contemporary climate. Local ant species richness was positively associated with temperature, but negatively (although weakly) associated with temperature range and precipitation. After contemporary climate was accounted for, a modest difference in diversity between hemispheres persisted, suggesting that factors other than contemporary climate contributed to the hemispherical asymmetry. The most parsimonious explanation for this remaining asymmetry is that greater climate change since the Eocene in the northern than in the southern hemisphere has led to more extinctions in the northern hemisphere with consequent effects on local ant species richness.
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Resilient networks of ant-plant mutualists in Amazonian forest fragments.
PLoS ONE
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The organization of networks of interacting species, such as plants and animals engaged in mutualisms, strongly influences the ecology and evolution of partner communities. Habitat fragmentation is a globally pervasive form of spatial heterogeneity that could profoundly impact the structure of mutualist networks. This is particularly true for biodiversity-rich tropical ecosystems, where the majority of plant species depend on mutualisms with animals and it is thought that changes in the structure of mutualist networks could lead to cascades of extinctions.
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Stability and phylogenetic correlation in gut microbiota: lessons from ants and apes.
Mol. Ecol.
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Correlation between gut microbiota and host phylogeny could reflect codiversification over shared evolutionary history, or a selective environment that is more similar in related hosts. These alternatives imply substantial differences in the relationship between host and symbiont, but can they be distinguished based on patterns in the community data themselves? Here, we explore patterns of phylogenetic correlation in the distribution of gut bacteria among species of turtle ants (genus Cephalotes), which host a dense gut microbial community. We use 16S rRNA pyrosequencing from 25 Cephalotes species to show that their gut community is remarkably stable, from the colony to the genus level. Despite this overall similarity, the existing differences among species microbiota significantly correlate with host phylogeny. We introduce a novel analytical technique to test whether these phylogenetic correlations are derived from recent bacterial evolution, as would be expected in the case of codiversification, or from broader shifts more likely to reflect environmental filters imposed by factors like diet or habitat. We also test this technique on a published dataset of ape microbiota, confirming earlier results while revealing previously undescribed patterns of phylogenetic correlation. Our results indicate a high degree of partner fidelity in the Cephalotes microbiota, suggesting that vertical transmission of the entire community could play an important role in the evolution and maintenance of the association. As additional comparative microbiota data become available, the techniques presented here can be used to explore trends in the evolution of host-associated microbial communities. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
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What is Visualize?

JoVE Visualize is a tool created to match the last 5 years of PubMed publications to methods in JoVE's video library.

How does it work?

We use abstracts found on PubMed and match them to JoVE videos to create a list of 10 to 30 related methods videos.

Video X seems to be unrelated to Abstract Y...

In developing our video relationships, we compare around 5 million PubMed articles to our library of over 4,500 methods videos. In some cases the language used in the PubMed abstracts makes matching that content to a JoVE video difficult. In other cases, there happens not to be any content in our video library that is relevant to the topic of a given abstract. In these cases, our algorithms are trying their best to display videos with relevant content, which can sometimes result in matched videos with only a slight relation.