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Army ant invasion of leatherback nests in Gabon

Egg mortality is one of the main factors affecting life history and conservation of oviparous species. A massive and cryptic colonisation of many leatherback turtle (Dermochelys coriacea) eggs is presented in the most important rookery for the species in Gabon. A total of 163 nests were exhumed at Kingere beach, revealing that only 16.7% of eggs produced hatchlings. In the 59% of the nests, more than half of the eggs were dead and attacked by invertebrates and 94% had at least one egg affected by invertebrates. The rate of eggs and SAGs (yolkless eggs) affected by invertebrates within a clutch ranged from 0% to 100%, with an average proportion of 39% and 52%, respectively. The most common invertebrates interacting with the eggs were ghost crabs and insects that affected 51% and 82% of the nests, respectively. Crab and insect co-occurred in 33% of the affected nests. Ants, identified as Dorylus spininodis (Emery 1901) were found in 56% of the excavated nests. However, it was not possible to determine if the ants predated alive eggs or scavenged dead eggs. Very often, hundreds of ants were found drowned within dead eggs. Termites and other invertebrates were associated with the clutch environment and identified as opportunistic feeders, being this is the first record of interaction between termites and sea turtle eggs. An unusual ecological interaction within the leatherback clutches between termites and ants was found in 11% of the nests. The abrupt transition between the soil forest and the beach might be favouring a thriving microbial and invertebrate activity in the sand profile that colonises the nests. informacion[at]ebd.csic.es: Ikaran et al (2020) Cryptic massive nest colonisation by ants and termites in the world's largest leatherback turtle rookery Ethol Ecol Evol 2020. Doi 10.1080/03949370.2020.1715487


https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/03949370.2020.1715487
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A risk assessment in Spain reveals that 30 invasive plant species are available for sale

A risk assessment in Spain reveals that 30 invasive plant species are available for sale

Horticulture is one of the main pathways of deliberate introduction of non-native plants, some of which might become invasive. Of the 914 commercial ornamental outdoor plant species sold in Spain, 700 (77%) are non-native (archaeophytes excluded) marketed species. These species were classified into six different lists based on their invasion status in Spain and elsewhere, their climatic suitability in Spain, and their potential environmental and socioeconomic impacts. Sufficient information for 270 species was available. A Priority List of eight regulated invasive species that were still available on the market is provided. Additionally an Attention List with 68 non-regulated invasive and potentially invasive species that might cause various impacts was established. To prioritise the species within the Attention List, the risk of invasion of these species was further assessed by using an adaptation of the Australian WRA protocol and the level of societal interest estimated from values of the Google Trends tool. Three other lists were proposed: A Green List of seven species with probably no potential to become invasive, a Watch List with 27 potentially invasive species with few potential impacts, and an Uncertainty List with 161 species of known status but with insufficient information to include them in any of the previous lists. For 430 (61%) of the marketed non-native plant species no sufficient information was available, which were compiled into a Data Deficient List. These findings of prohibited species for sale highlight the need for stronger enforcement of the regulations on invasive plant species in Spain. In addition, our results highlight the need for additional information on potential impacts and climate suitability of horticultural plants being sold in Spain, as insufficient information could be found to assess the invasion risk for a majority of species. informacion[at]ebd.csic.es: Bayon & Vilà (2019) Horizon scanning to identify invasion risk of ornamental plants marketed in Spain. NeoBiota 52: 47–86 (2019). DOI: 10.3897/neobiota.52.38113


https://neobiota.pensoft.net/article/38113/