Impact of fisheries on sea turtles

The bycatch of sea turtles by industrial fisheries is receiving an increasing attention in recent years due to the high impact it causes on these endangered species. This issue was evaluated in southern Spain waters that harbors an important feeding ground of loggerhead and leatherback turtles, including the endangered Eastern Atlantic loggerhead population. To quantify the impact that different fisheries represents to sea turtles, 272 fishermen answered to detailed illustrated questionnaires...

The structure of waterbird seed dispersal networks is not mediated by functional traits

Plants and their dispersers form interaction networks whose structure has important implications for the persistence and stability of the community. Frugivory is vital for the dispersal of many plants, but the dispersal interactions between plants and non-frugivorous animals are poorly studied. In this study, the authors characterized the structure of networks for seed dispersal by waterfowl, considered whether their structure is similar to that of the networks formed between frugivorous...

Mosquitoes are attracted to Plasmodium-infected birds

Parasites can manipulate their hosts to increase their transmission success. Avian malaria parasites (Plasmodium) are thought to alter the cues such as host odour, used by host-seeking mosquitoes. Bird odour is affected by secretions from the uropygial gland and may play a role in modulating vector-host interactions. The hypothesis tested was that mosquitoes are more attracted to the uropygial secretions and/or whole-body odour (headspace) of Plasmodium-infected house sparrows (Passer...

The Atlantic trade winds regulate the arrival of migratory birds to the Canary Islands and the reproduction of falcons

Large-scale environmental forces can influence biodiversity at different levels of biological organization. Climate, in particular, is often associated with species distributions and diversity gradients. However, its mechanistic link to population dynamics is still poorly understood. Here, the full mechanistic path by which a climatic driver, the Atlantic trade winds, determines the viability of a bird population is unravelled.

High potential of Argentine ant to harm amphibian juveniles

Invasive species have major impacts on biodiversity and are one of the primary causes of amphibian decline and extinction. Unlike other top ant invaders that negatively affect larger fauna via chemical defensive compounds, the Argentine ant (Linepithema humile) does not have a functional sting. Nonetheless, it deploys defensive compounds against competitors and adversaries. Levels of ant aggression toward 3 native terrestrial amphibians were estimated by challenging juveniles in field ant...