Water boatman survival and fecundity are related to ectoparasitism and salinity stress

Salinity is increasing in aquatic ecosystems in the Mediterranean region due to global change, and this is likely to have an important impact on host-parasite interactions. Here the relationships between infection by ectoparasitic water mites and salinity variation, on survival and fecundity of water boatmen Corixidae from Doñana National Park was studied in the laboratory. Larvae of Sigara lateralis parasitised by larval mites (Hydrachna skorikowi) had lower survivorship, and failed to moult...

DNA changes in mosquitos induced by malaria infection

Infection by the human malaria parasite leads to important changes in mosquito phenotypic traits related to vector competence. However, we still lack a clear understanding of the underlying mechanisms and, in particular, of the epigenetic basis for these changes. Genome-wide distribution maps of H3K27ac, H3K9ac, H3K9me3 and H3K4me3 by ChIP-seq and the transcriptome by RNA-seq, of midguts from Anopheles gambiae mosquitoes blood-fed uninfected and infected with natural isolates of the human...

Adaptation to high-altitude habitats in the Eastern honey

The Eastern honey bee Apis cerana is of central importance for agriculture in Asia. It has adapted to a wide variety of environmental conditions across its native range in southern and eastern Asia, which includes high?altitude regions. Eastern honey bees inhabiting mountains differ morphologically from neighboring lowland populations, and may also exhibit differences in physiology and behavior. The genomes of 60 Eastern honey bees collected from high and low altitudes in Yunnan and Gansu...

Shorebirds disperse a wide variety of plants along the Atlantic flyway

Almost no empirical work has been done before on the plants dispersed by migratory shorebirds (Charadriiformes). By sampling faeces and regurgitated pellets in Doñana (Spain), England, Ireland and Iceland, scientists found intact seeds of 27 plant taxa, only four of which have a fleshy fruit widely considered diagnostic for this “endozoochory” dispersal process.

Eucalypt plantations disturb the development of amphibian larvae

Consequences of human actions like global warming, spread of exotic species or resource consumption are pushing species to extinction. Even species considered to be at low extinction risk often show signs of local declines. Here, the impact of eucalypt plantations, the best-known exotic tree species worldwide, was evaluated as well as its interaction with temperature and predators on amphibian development, growth, antipredator responses and physiology. For this purpose, a fully factorial...