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1.
Zootaxa ; 4695(2): zootaxa.4695.2.6, 2019 Nov 07.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31719357

RESUMO

Krysko et al. (2016a) used analyses of DNA sequence data to reveal two genetic lineages of Drymarchon couperi. The Atlantic lineage contained specimens from southeastern Georgia and eastern peninsular Florida, and the Gulf Coast lineage contained specimens from western and southern peninsular Florida as well as western Florida, southern Alabama, and southern Mississippi. In a second paper Krysko et al. (2016b) analyzed morphological variation of the two lineages, which allowed them to restrict D. couperi to the Atlantic lineage and to describe the Gulf Coast lineage as a new species, Drymarchon kolpobasileus. This taxonomic discovery was remarkable for such a large, wide-ranging species and was notable for its impact on conservation. Because of population declines, particularly in western Florida, southern Alabama, and southern Mississippi, D. couperi (sensu lato) was listed as Threatened under the Endangered Species Act (United States Fish and Wildlife Service 1978, 2008) and repatriation of the species to areas where it had been extirpated was listed as a priority conservation goal (United States Fish and Wildlife Service 1982, 2008). Such repatriation efforts were attempted in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, and South Carolina, starting in 1977 (Speake et al. 1987), but failed to create viable populations, likely because too few snakes were released at too many sites (Guyer et al. 2019; Folt et al. 2019a). A second attempt at repatriation was started in 2010 and concentrated on release of snakes at a single site in Alabama (Stiles et al. 2013). However, Krysko et al. (2016a) criticized this repatriation effort because it appeared to involve release of D. couperi (sensu stricto) into the geographic region occupied by D. kolpobasileus (as diagnosed in Krysko et al. 2016b).


Assuntos
Colubridae , Alabama , Animais , Florida , Georgia , Mississippi , South Carolina , Estados Unidos
2.
PLoS One ; 14(4): e0214845, 2019.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30951541

RESUMO

Upper respiratory tract disease (URTD) in North American tortoises (Gopherus) has been the focus of numerous laboratory and field investigations, yet the prevalence and importance of this disease remains unclear across many tortoise populations. Furthermore, much research has been focused on understanding diagnostic biomarkers of two known agents of URTD, Mycoplasma agassizii and Mycoplasma testudineum, yet the reliability and importance of these diagnostic biomarkers across populations is unclear. Gopher Tortoises (Gopherus polyphemus) have experienced significant declines and are currently protected range wide. Geographically, Alabama represents an important connection for Gopher Tortoise populations between the core and periphery of this species' distribution. Herein, we systematically sampled 197 Gopher Tortoises for URTD across seven sites in south-central and south-eastern Alabama. Plasma samples were assayed for antibodies to M. agassizii and M. testudineum; nasal lavage samples were assayed for the presence of viable pathogens as well as pathogen DNA. Lastly, animals were scored for the presence of external symptoms and nasal scarring consistent with URTD. External symptoms of URTD were present in G. polyphemus in all sites sampled in Alabama. There was no relationship between active symptoms of URTD and Mycoplasma antibodies, however the presence of URTD nasal scarring was positively related to M. agassizii antibodies (P = 0.032). For a single site that was sampled in three sequential years, seroprevalence to M. agassizii significantly varied among years (P < 0.0001). Mycoplasma agassizii DNA was isolated from four of the seven sites using quantitative PCR, yet none of the samples were culture positive for either of the pathogens. An analysis of disease status and condition indicated that there was a significant, positive relationship between the severity of URTD symptoms and relative body mass (P < 0.05). This study highlights the need for continued monitoring of disease in wild populations. Specifically, focus must be placed on identifying other likely pathogens and relevant biomarkers that may be important drivers of URTD in North American tortoises. Special consideration should be given to environmental contexts that may render wild populations more susceptible to disease.


Assuntos
Infecções por Mycoplasma/veterinária , Infecções Respiratórias/veterinária , Tartarugas/microbiologia , Alabama , Animais , Anticorpos Antibacterianos/sangue , DNA Bacteriano/genética , DNA Bacteriano/isolamento & purificação , Feminino , Masculino , Mycoplasma/genética , Mycoplasma/imunologia , Mycoplasma/isolamento & purificação , Infecções por Mycoplasma/diagnóstico , Infecções por Mycoplasma/microbiologia , Infecções Respiratórias/diagnóstico , Infecções Respiratórias/microbiologia
3.
PLoS One ; 14(3): e0214439, 2019.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30913266

RESUMO

Accurate species delimitation and description are necessary to guide effective conservation of imperiled species, and this synergy is maximized when multiple data sources are used to delimit species. We illustrate this point by examining Drymarchon couperi (Eastern Indigo Snake), a large, federally-protected species in North America that was recently divided into two species based on gene sequence data from three loci and heuristic morphological assessment. Here, we re-evaluate the two-species hypothesis for D. couperi by evaluating both population genetic and gene sequence data. Our analyses of 14 microsatellite markers revealed 6-8 genetic population clusters with significant admixture, particularly across the contact zone between the two hypothesized species. Phylogenetic analyses of gene sequence data with maximum-likelihood methods suggested discordance between mitochondrial and nuclear markers and provided phylogenetic support for one species rather than two. For these reasons, we place Drymarchon kolpobasileus into synonymy with D. couperi. We suggest inconsistent patterns between mitochondrial and nuclear DNA are driven by high dispersal of males relative to females. We advocate for species delimitation exercises that evaluate admixture and gene flow in addition to phylogenetic analyses, particularly when the latter reveal monophyletic lineages. This is particularly important for taxa, such as squamates, that exhibit strong sex-biased dispersal. Problems associated with over-delimitation of species richness can become particularly acute for threatened and endangered species, because of high costs to conservation when taxonomy demands protection of more individual species than are supported by accumulating data.


Assuntos
Distribuição Animal , Núcleo Celular/genética , Conservação dos Recursos Naturais , Espécies em Perigo de Extinção , Mitocôndrias/genética , Serpentes/classificação , Serpentes/genética , Animais , Feminino , Loci Gênicos/genética , Masculino , Repetições de Microssatélites/genética , Fatores Sexuais
4.
PLoS One ; 14(1): e0209252, 2019.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30601869

RESUMO

Invasive Burmese pythons (Python bivittatus Kuhl, 1820) have introduced a lung parasite, Raillietiella orientalis, (Hett, 1915) from the python's native range in Southeast Asia to its introduced range in Florida, where parasite spillover from pythons to two families and eight genera of native snakes has occurred. Because these novel host species present a diversity of ecological and morphological traits, and because these parasites attach to their hosts with hooks located on their cephalothorax, we predicted that R. orientalis would exhibit substantial, host-associated phenotypic plasticity in cephalothorax shape. Indeed, geometric morphometric analyses of 39 parasites from five host species revealed significant variation among host taxa in R. orientalis cephalothorax shape. We observed differences associated with host ecology, where parasites from semi-aquatic and aquatic snakes exhibited the greatest morphological similarity. Morphological analyses of R. orientalis recovered from invasive pythons, native pit vipers, and terrestrial snakes each revealed distinct shapes. Our results suggest R. orientalis can exhibit significant differences in morphology based upon host species infected, and this plasticity may facilitate infection with this non-native parasite in a wide array of novel squamate host species.


Assuntos
Boidae/parasitologia , Espécies Introduzidas , Doenças Parasitárias em Animais/parasitologia , Pentastomídeos/patogenicidade , Adaptação Fisiológica , Animais , Variação Biológica da População , Ecossistema , Florida , Especificidade de Hospedeiro , Interações Hospedeiro-Parasita , Pentastomídeos/genética , Pentastomídeos/fisiologia , Serpentes/parasitologia
5.
Zootaxa ; 4461(4): 573-586, 2018 Aug 23.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30314068

RESUMO

In a tour-de-force for anole biology, Poe et al. (2017) provide the most complete phylogenetic analysis of members of the family Dactyloidae yet attempted. The contribution is remarkable in the completeness of sampled taxa and breath of included characters. It is equally remarkable in the concordance of their consensus tree with the topology of previous phylogenetic inferences. Thus, the creation of a near-complete data matrix of extant taxa demonstrates that an asymptote in tree topological stability likely was reached in previous studies with more limited sampling (e.g. Alfoldi 2011, Jackman et al. 1999, Nicholson et al. 2012). Such a result provides hope that major lineages within the anole radiation can be examined consistently by scientists interested in parsing evolutionary patterns emerging within and among them.


Assuntos
Lagartos , Filogenia , Animais , Evolução Biológica
6.
Ecol Evol ; 8(5): 2880-2889, 2018 03.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-29531702

RESUMO

The conspecific attraction hypothesis predicts that individuals are attracted to conspecifics because conspecifics may be cues to quality habitat and/or colonists may benefit from living in aggregations. Poison frogs (Dendrobatidae) are aposematic, territorial, and visually oriented-three characteristics which make dendrobatids an appropriate model to test for conspecific attraction. In this study, we tested this hypothesis using an extensive mark-recapture dataset of the strawberry poison frog (Oophaga pumilio) from La Selva Biological Station, Costa Rica. Data were collected from replicate populations in a relatively homogenous Theobroma cacao plantation, which provided a unique opportunity to test how conspecifics influence the spatial ecology of migrants in a controlled habitat with homogenous structure. We predicted that (1) individuals entering a population would aggregate with resident adults, (2) migrants would share sites with residents at a greater frequency than expected by chance, and (3) migrant home ranges would have shorter nearest-neighbor distances (NND) to residents than expected by chance. The results were consistent with these three predictions: Relative to random simulations, we observed significant aggregation, home-range overlap, and NND distribution functions in four, five, and six, respectively, of the six migrant-resident groups analyzed. Conspecific attraction may benefit migrant O. pumilio by providing cues to suitable home sites and/or increasing the potential for social interactions with conspecifics; if true, these benefits should outweigh the negative effects of other factors associated with aggregation. The observed aggregation between migrant and resident O. pumilio is consistent with conspecific attraction in dendrobatid frogs, and our study provides rare support from a field setting that conspecific attraction may be a relevant mechanism for models of anuran spatial ecology.

7.
Ecol Evol ; 8(2): 830-840, 2018 01.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-29375757

RESUMO

Identification of the origin of parasites of nonindigenous species (NIS) can be complex. NIS may introduce parasites from their native range and acquire parasites from within their invaded range. Determination of whether parasites are non-native or native can be complicated when parasite genera occur within both the NIS' native range and its introduced range. We explored potential for spillover and spillback of lung parasites infecting Burmese pythons (Python bivittatus) in their invasive range (Florida). We collected 498 indigenous snakes of 26 species and 805 Burmese pythons during 2004-2016 and examined them for lung parasites. We used morphology to identify three genera of pentastome parasites, Raillietiella, a cosmopolitan form, and Porocephalus and Kiricephalus, both New World forms. We sequenced these parasites at one mitochondrial and one nuclear locus and showed that each genus is represented by a single species, R. orientalis, P. crotali, and K. coarctatus. Pythons are host to R. orientalis and P. crotali, but not K. coarctatus; native snakes are host to all three species. Sequence data show that pythons introduced R. orientalis to North America, where this parasite now infects native snakes. Additionally, our data suggest that pythons are competent hosts to P. crotali, a widespread parasite native to North and South America that was previously hypothesized to infect only viperid snakes. Our results indicate invasive Burmese pythons have affected parasite-host dynamics of native snakes in ways that are consistent with parasite spillover and demonstrate the potential for indirect effects during invasions. Additionally, we show that pythons have acquired a parasite native to their introduced range, which is the initial condition necessary for parasite spillback.

8.
J Exp Zool A Ecol Integr Physiol ; 327(5): 235-242, 2017 06.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-28382789

RESUMO

Disease outbreaks are of increasing importance to ectothermic vertebrates as one of numerous results of global change. Anthropogenic climate change is predicted to increase climatic instability, thereby altering natural thermal environments. In this study, we evaluated the direct effects of rapid temperature change on immunity in Gopher Tortoises (Gopherus polyphemus). Specifically, we tested the lag hypothesis, which predicts significant misalignment of optimal and realized immunity when temperature rapidly changes. We assayed constitutive innate immunity, B-cell humoral responses, and heterophil: lymphocyte ratios in response to rapid temperature changes corresponding to realistic changes in body temperature between winter and summer. We found that during summer, rapid temperature reduction caused a series of changes in immunity, including reduced bactericidal ability (P = 0.002), reduced humoral response (P < 0.0001), and increased heterophil:lymphocyte ratios (P < 0.0001). During winter, we found that a temperature increase provided no benefit to immunity. Specifically, there was no increase in bactericidal ability as was predicted by the lag hypothesis. In winter, humoral responses were significantly reduced as a result of rapid warming (P = 0.011) and the rapid warming caused a significant reduction in heterophil:lymphocyte ratios (P < 0.0001). Independent of temperature, we found a significant acclimation effect of winter relative to summer conditions in humoral response (P < 0.001), which showed an overall increase in this parameter during winter. Our findings demonstrate that rapid temperature change, regardless of its direction, is a constraint on immunity in ectothermic vertebrates.


Assuntos
Aclimatação/imunologia , Tartarugas/imunologia , Animais , Linfócitos B/imunologia , Imunidade Humoral/imunologia , Estações do Ano , Temperatura Ambiente
9.
Chemosphere ; 180: 125-129, 2017 Aug.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-28399454

RESUMO

Endocrine-disrupting contaminants (EDC's) are well known to alter sexual differentiation among vertebrates via estrogenic effects during development, particularly in organisms characterized by temperature-dependent sex determination. However, substances producing androgenic effects typically lack potency when tested in laboratory settings and are virtually unstudied in field settings. Here, we assay levels of a synthetic androgen, 17α-methyltestosterone (MT), in a heavily male-biased population of American crocodiles in the Tempisque River Basin of Costa Rica based on the recent hypothesis that this chemical is an EDC in developing crocodilian embryos. The presence of MT was documented in all field-collected samples of egg yolk and in plasma of all age classes in among population of crocodiles. Hatchlings exhibited higher plasma MT concentrations (102.1 ± 82.8 ng/mL) than juveniles (33.8 ± 51.5) and adults (25.9 ± 20.8 ng/mL). Among populations, crocodiles captured in the Tempisque River (62.9 ± 73.7 ng/mL) were higher in MT concentration than those from Tarcoles (13.3 ± 11.4 ng/mL) and negative controls (0.001 ± 0.0002 ng/mL). A mechanism for the bio-transport of MT and its subsequent effects is proposed.


Assuntos
Jacarés e Crocodilos/metabolismo , Monitoramento Ambiental , Hormônios Esteroides Gonadais/metabolismo , Poluentes Químicos da Água/metabolismo , Androgênios , Animais , Costa Rica , Disruptores Endócrinos , Estrogênios , Feminino , Masculino , Metiltestosterona , Rios , Esteroides , Estados Unidos
10.
Physiol Biochem Zool ; 90(4): 484-493, 2017.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-28437174

RESUMO

Organisms possess a range of thermoregulatory strategies that may vary in response to sickness, thereby driving important life-history consequences. Because the immune system is vital to maintaining organism function, understanding the suite of immune responses to infection indicates basic costs and benefits of physiological strategies. Here, we assessed consequences of thermoregulation and seasonality on immune function in both immunologically stimulated and nonstimulated gopher tortoises (Gopherus polyphemus). An ectothermic vertebrate was used as an experimental model because the effects of thermoregulation on immunity remain understudied and are of increasing importance in light of anthropogenic alterations to thermal environments. We found that G. polyphemus increased body temperature (Tb) at 1 h after injection with lipopolysaccharide (LPS) when compared with saline controls (P = 0.04), consistent with behavioral fever. LPS increased plasma bactericidal ability (BA; P = 0.006), reduced plasma iron concentration (P = 0.041), and increased heterophil∶lymphocyte ratios (P < 0.001). In nonstimulated animals, thermoregulatory strategy had a strong effect on innate immunity, which demonstrated that individuals have the ability to facultatively adjust immune function when infection burden is low; this relationship was not present in LPS-injected animals, which suggested that animals stimulated with LPS maximize bactericidal ability independently of temperature. Seasonal acclimation state did not influence responses to LPS, although baseline plasma iron was significantly lower in animals acclimated to winter. These results support that a trade-off exists between immunity and other conflicting physiological interests. Moreover, these results clearly demonstrate the ability of individuals to modulate immune function as a direct result of thermoregulatory decisions.


Assuntos
Regulação da Temperatura Corporal/fisiologia , Imunidade Inata/fisiologia , Lipopolissacarídeos/toxicidade , Tartarugas/fisiologia , Animais , Imunidade Inata/efeitos dos fármacos , Estações do Ano , Tartarugas/imunologia
11.
J Exp Zool A Ecol Integr Physiol ; 327(10): 592-599, 2017 12.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-29527833

RESUMO

During geographic range expansion, populations of non-indigenous species at the invasion front may benefit from directing resources away from immune defense. To test this hypothesis, we investigated the strength of two innate immune components in populations of invasive Cuban Treefrogs (Osteopilus septentrionalis) in a long-colonized area (core region) and at the invasion front (leading-edge region). First, we compared the region-specific metabolic response of frogs injected with an endotoxin that induces systemic inflammation (lipopolysaccharide, LPS) to sham-injected control frogs pooled from both regions. Males and females were analyzed independently because we detected a sex-related difference in mass-independent metabolism of control frogs, with males exhibiting a significantly higher metabolic rate (F1, 21  = 29.02, P < 0.001) than females. We observed a significantly higher metabolic rate in LPS-injected core frogs compared with control frogs for both males (P = 0.041) and females (P = 0.007). Conversely, in leading-edge populations, there was no significant difference in the metabolic rate of LPS-injected and control frogs (males, P  = 0.195; females, P  = 0.132). Second, we directly compared bacterial killing ability of frog blood plasma between regions. Bactericidal ability of plasma was significantly greater in frogs from the core region in comparison with those at the leading edge (F1, 26   = 28.67, P < 0.001). For both immune components that we examined, populations from the core exhibited stronger immune responses. Our findings support hypotheses predicting an inverse relationship between immunity and range expansion.


Assuntos
Distribuição Animal , Anuros/imunologia , Anuros/fisiologia , Imunidade Inata/fisiologia , Animais , Metabolismo Energético , Feminino , Florida , Masculino
12.
Physiol Biochem Zool ; 89(6): 487-497, 2016.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-27792530

RESUMO

Studies have suggested a role for natural seasonal change to drive patterns of disease, especially within ectothermic vertebrates. In light of recent climate change, it is important to understand baseline disease resistance in a seasonal context to further understand the role that changes in seasonal weather patterns may have in increasing disease frequency. Herein we found support for the seasonal acclimation hypothesis in Gopherus polyphemus (gopher tortoise), which indicated that natural seasonal variation causes differences in baseline immune function across seasonal acclimation states. We found that an innate immune parameter, bactericidal ability (BA), was significantly elevated in the summer (P < 0.00001). Circulating leukocyte profiles varied significantly among seasons, with heterophils and monocytes increased (P = 0.00019 and P = 0.0001, respectively) and lymphocytes decreased (P < 0.00001) during winter. We assayed baseline glucocorticoid concentration (e.g., corticosterone [CORT]) across seasons and sampling conditions to test whether CORT drove the seasonal pattern in immunological acclimation. CORT was significantly lowest during winter and in animals temporarily maintained in seminatural conditions. These changes in CORT occurred independently of the immunological adjustments, suggesting that the seasonal pattern of immunity was not mediated by CORT secretion. The reduction in lymphocytes and BA and also BA during winter suggest that seasonal acclimation is likely a restraint on energetic output when temperature is low and physiological performance is thermally constrained. While these parameters were reduced in winter, the increase in heterophils and monocytes may indicate a compensatory immune adjustment to increase the number of innate phagocytic cells.


Assuntos
Aclimatação/imunologia , Imunidade Inata/fisiologia , Estações do Ano , Tartarugas/imunologia , Animais , Corticosterona , Leucócitos/fisiologia , Tartarugas/sangue , Tartarugas/fisiologia
13.
J Therm Biol ; 60: 49-59, 2016 Aug.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-27503716

RESUMO

Spatial variation in global climate change makes population-specific responses to this enigmatic threat pertinent on a regional scale. Organisms with temperature-dependent sex determination (TSD) potentially possess a unique physiological susceptibility that threatens population viability if rapid environmental effects on sex ratios render populations non-viable. A heavily male-biased sex ratio for hatchling American crocodiles of the Tempisque Basin, Costa Rica requires assessment of how nest temperature affects sex determination at this site, how females might compensate for these effects when creating nests, and how current patterns of climate change might alter future sex ratios and survival in hatchling cohorts. We demonstrate high within-nest variation in temperature but predict a female bias at hatching based on nest temperatures quantified here. Further, our data suggest that egg size and metabolic heating associated with this factor outweighs microhabitat parameters and depth in influencing nest thermal regimes. Finally, we document regional warming in the Tempisque Basin over the last 15 years and project that further heating over the next 15 years will not yield hatchling sex ratios as male biased as those currently found at this site. Thus, we find no support for nest temperature or climate change as likely explanations for male-biased American crocodile (Crocodylus acutus) sex ratios in the Tempisque Basin.


Assuntos
Jacarés e Crocodilos/fisiologia , Aquecimento Global , Comportamento de Nidação , Animais , Costa Rica , Feminino , Masculino , Processos de Determinação Sexual , Razão de Masculinidade , Temperatura Ambiente
14.
Gen Comp Endocrinol ; 236: 63-69, 2016 09 15.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-27401264

RESUMO

Effects of xenobiotics can be organizational, permanently affecting anatomy during embryonic development, and/or activational, influencing transitory actions during adulthood. The organizational influence of endocrine-disrupting contaminants (EDC's) produces a wide variety of reproductive abnormalities among vertebrates that exhibit temperature-dependent sex determination (TSD). Typically, such influences result in subsequent activational malfunction, some of which are beneficial in aquaculture. For example, 17-αmethyltestosterone (MT), a synthetic androgen, is utilized in tilapia farming to bias sex ratio towards males because they are more profitable. A heavily male-biased hatchling sex ratio is reported from a crocodile population near one such tilapia operation in Guanacaste, Costa Rica. In this study we test the effects of MT on sexual differentiation in American alligators, which we used as a surrogate for all crocodilians. Experimentally, alligators were exposed to MT in ovo at standard ecotoxicological concentrations. Sexual differentiation was determined by examination of primary and secondary sex organs post hatching. We find that MT is capable of producing male embryos at temperatures known to produce females and demonstrate a dose-dependent gradient of masculinization. Embryonic exposure to MT results in hermaphroditic primary sex organs, delayed renal development and masculinization of the clitero-penis (CTP).


Assuntos
Metiltestosterona/metabolismo , Análise para Determinação do Sexo , Jacarés e Crocodilos , Animais , Feminino , Masculino , Diferenciação Sexual
15.
Mol Phylogenet Evol ; 98: 97-110, 2016 May.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-26872531

RESUMO

Phylogeographic studies frequently result in the elevation of subspecific taxa to species given monophyly, or the synonymy of subspecies that are not monophyletic. However, given limited or incongruent datasets, retention of subspecies can be useful to describe hypothesized incipient species or to illustrate interesting biological phenomena driving morphological diversity. Four subspecific taxa have been used to describe largely allopatric geographic variation within the species Pseudotriton ruber, a plethodontid salamander occupying stream and spring habitats across eastern North America: P. r. vioscai occurs in lowland Coastal Plain habitats, while P. r. ruber, P. r. nitidus, and P. r. schencki occupy upland regions in and around the Appalachian Mountains. Pseudotriton ruber co-occurs through its distribution with the aposematic newt Notophthalmus viridescens, and both species are hypothesized to be part of a Müllerian mimicry complex. In this study, we sequenced regions of two mitochondrial (cytochrome b, NADH dehydrogenase subunit 2) and one single copy nuclear protein-coding gene (pro-opiomelanocortin) from individuals sampled across much of the distribution of P. ruber and then used maximum-likelihood and Bayesian phylogenetic inference to test the monophyly of subspecies, reconstruct biogeographic history, and make inferences about morphological evolution. Phylogeographic hypotheses from mitochondrial and nuclear datasets described structure among populations of P. ruber which separated Coastal Plain and upland Appalachian populations, but subspecies were not monophyletic. Biogeographic reconstruction estimated the ancestor of all populations to have occupied and initially diverged in the Coastal Plain during the Pliocene (∼3.6mya), before one lineage subsequently invaded upland areas of Appalachia. Bold bright coloration of high elevation subspecies P. r. nitidus and P. r. schencki appears to have evolved twice. We hypothesize that the Müllerian mimicry complex with N. viridescens and P. ruber may provide a selective mechanism driving the co-evolution of striking bright and dull morphological variation among populations of both species. While P. ruber subspecies were not consistent with our criteria for diagnosing species (monophyly) and therefore could not be elevated to species, we advocate for the retention of subspecies because they describe hypotheses about an incipient species (P. r. vioscai) and how Müllerian mimicry may shape morphological diversity of species.


Assuntos
Evolução Molecular , Filogenia , Urodelos/classificação , Urodelos/genética , Animais , Teorema de Bayes , Mimetismo Biológico/genética , Núcleo Celular/genética , Ecossistema , Feminino , Genes Mitocondriais/genética , Masculino , Fenótipo , Filogeografia , Salamandridae/genética , Análise de Sequência de DNA
16.
BMC Evol Biol ; 15: 143, 2015 Jul 19.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-26187158

RESUMO

BACKGROUND: Caribbean anole lizards (Dactyloidae) have frequently been used as models to study questions regarding biogeography and adaptive radiations, but the evolutionary history of Central American anoles (particularly those of the genus Norops) has not been well studied. Previous work has hypothesized a north-to-south dispersal pattern of Central American Norops, but no studies have examined dispersal within any Norops lineages. Here we test two major hypotheses for the dispersal of the N. humilis/quaggulus complex (defined herein, forming a subset within Savage and Guyer's N. humilis group). RESULTS: Specimens of the N. humilis group were collected in Central America, from eastern Mexico to the Canal Zone of Panama. Major nodes were dated for comparison to the geologic history of Central America, and ancestral ranges were estimated for the N. humilis/quaggulus complex to test hypothesized dispersal patterns. These lineages displayed a northward dispersal pattern. We also demonstrate that the N. humilis/quaggulus complex consists of a series of highly differentiated mitochondrial lineages, with more conserved nuclear evolution. The paraphyly of the N. humilis species group is confirmed. A spatial analysis of molecular variance suggests that current populations are genetically distinct from one another, with limited mitochondrial gene flow occurring among sites. CONCLUSIONS: The observed south-to-north colonization route within the Norops humilis/quaggulus complex represents the first evidence of a Norops lineage colonizing in a south-to-north pattern, (opposite to the previously held hypothesis for mainland Norops). One previously described taxon (N. quaggulus) was nested within N. humilis, demonstrating the paraphyly of this species; while our analyses also reject the monophyly of the Norops humilis species group (sensu Savage and Guyer), with N. tropidonotus, N. uniformis, and N. marsupialis being distantly related to/highly divergent from the N. humilis/quaggulus complex. Our work sheds light on mainland anole biogeography and past dispersal events, providing a pattern to test against other groups of mainland anoles.


Assuntos
Lagartos/classificação , Lagartos/genética , Animais , Evolução Biológica , América Central , Filogenia , Análise de Sequência de DNA
17.
Zootaxa ; 3947(3): 447-50, 2015 Apr 16.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-25947748

RESUMO

The Alligator Snapping Turtle (Macrochelys temminckii Troost in Harlan 1835, sensu lato) has been historically treated as a single, wide-ranging species, until a recently published paper by Thomas et al. (2014; hereafter Thomas et al.) analyzed variation in morphology and mitochondrial DNA sequence data to describe two new species of Macrochelys: the Apalachicola Alligator Snapping Turtle (Macrochelys apalachicolae Thomas, Granatosky, Bourque, Krysko, Moler, Gamble, Suarez, Leone & Roman 2014) and the Suwannee Alligator Snapping Turtle (Macrochelys suwanniensis Thomas, Granatosky, Bourque, Krysko, Moler, Gamble, Suarez, Leone & Roman 2014). The specific epithet temminckii was retained for populations in drainages from the Yellow River in Alabama and Florida west to the San Antonio River, Texas. Because populations of Macrochelys have been historically exploited by humans (Pritchard 1989) and the life-history strategies of large, long-lived turtles make them susceptible to declines from harvest (Congdon et al. 1994), a sound understanding of species delimitation and richness is critical for the conservation of alligator snapping turtles, especially if the acceptance of a widely distributed species disguises the presence of multiple, smaller-ranged species.


Assuntos
Tartarugas/classificação , Animais
18.
Zoo Biol ; 34(3): 230-8, 2015.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-25866094

RESUMO

Optimal husbandry techniques are desirable for any headstart program, but frequently are unknown for rare species. Here we describe key reproductive variables and determine optimal incubation temperature and diet diversity for Eastern Indigo Snakes (Drymarchon couperi) grown in laboratory settings. Optimal incubation temperature was estimated from two variables dependent on temperature, shell dimpling, a surrogate for death from fungal infection, and deviation of an egg from an ovoid shape, a surrogate for death from developmental anomalies. Based on these relationships and size at hatching we determined optimal incubation temperature to be 26°C. Additionally, we used incubation data to assess the effect of temperature on duration of incubation and size of hatchlings. We also examined hatchling diets necessary to achieve optimal growth over a 21-month period. These snakes exhibited a positive linear relationship between total mass eaten and growth rate, when individuals were fed less than 1711 g of prey, and displayed constant growth for individuals exceeding 1711 g of prey. Similarly, growth rate increased linearly with increasing diet diversity up to a moderately diverse diet, followed by constant growth for higher levels of diet diversity. Of the two components of diet diversity, diet evenness played a stronger role than diet richness in explaining variance in hatchling growth. These patterns document that our goal of satiating snakes was achieved for some individuals but not others and that diets in which total grams consumed over the first 21 months of life is distributed equivalently among at least three prey genera yielded the fastest growth rates for hatchling snakes.


Assuntos
Criação de Animais Domésticos/normas , Animais de Zoológico/fisiologia , Dieta/veterinária , Serpentes/fisiologia , Animais , Animais de Zoológico/crescimento & desenvolvimento , Tamanho Corporal/fisiologia , Casca de Ovo/anatomia & histologia , Serpentes/crescimento & desenvolvimento , Temperatura Ambiente
19.
J Wildl Dis ; 50(4): 733-44, 2014 Oct.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-25098305

RESUMO

Abstract Upper respiratory tract disease (URTD) in the gopher tortoise (Gopherus polyphemus) is highly contagious and has been implicated in the reduction of populations throughout the range. With the exception of a few limited studies, the prevalence of URTD in Georgia, USA tortoise populations is poorly known. We found that exposure to Mycoplasma agassizii and Mycoplasma testudineum, associated with URTD, varied geographically among 11 Georgia tortoise populations. The prevalence of antibodies to M. agassizii in individual populations was either very low (0-3%, n=7 populations) or very high (96-100%, n=4 populations), whereas there was variation in the prevalence of antibodies to M. testudineum among populations (20-61%, n=10) with only one site being negative. Five sites had tortoises with antibodies to both pathogens, and these were the only sites where we observed tortoises with clinical signs consistent with URTD. We did not find tortoises with clinical signs of URTD at sites with tortoises with antibodies only to M. testudineum, which provides evidence that this organism may be of limited pathogenicity for gopher tortoises. Collectively, these data indicate that both M. agassizii and M. testudineum are present in Georgia populations of gopher tortoises and that clinical disease is apparent in populations where both pathogens are present. Additional research is needed to better understand the role of these two pathogens, and other potential pathogens, in the overall health of tortoise populations, especially if future conservation efforts involve translocation of tortoises.


Assuntos
Infecções por Mycoplasma/veterinária , Mycoplasma/isolamento & purificação , Infecções Respiratórias/veterinária , Tartarugas , Animais , Feminino , Georgia/epidemiologia , Masculino , Infecções por Mycoplasma/epidemiologia , Vigilância da População , Infecções Respiratórias/epidemiologia , Infecções Respiratórias/microbiologia
20.
J Wildl Dis ; 50(4): 745-56, 2014 Oct.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-25121399

RESUMO

Abstract From 2011-12, we studied a gopher tortoise (Gopherus polyphemus) population with a historically high prevalence of antibodies to Mycoplasma agassizii to assess long-term effects of upper-respiratory-tract disease (URTD) on tortoise behavior. We radiotracked 30 adult tortoises (16 males, 14 females) from a long-term study site with the use of mark-recapture methods to determine site fidelity and to compare home-range size to that of a study in 1997. An additional 10 tortoises (six males, four females) with severe clinical signs of URTD from elsewhere in the study area were radiotracked and compared to tortoises that were asymptomatic or had only mild clinical signs. We also monitored thermoregulatory behavior of tortoises with the use of data loggers affixed to the carapace. There was no significant difference in home-range size between the asymptomatic tortoises and those with mild symptoms. Home ranges of tortoises with severe URTD were significantly larger than asymptomatic or mildly affected tortoises. Tortoises with severe clinical signs moved long distances over short periods, contradicting a hypothesis that chronically infected tortoises are less likely to emigrate. Prevalence of M. agassizii antibodies was similar among the three groups (98% overall), but prevalence of antibodies to a second pathogen associated with URTD, Mycoplasma testudineum, was lower in the asymptomatic (n=14, 7%) and mild-symptoms (n=7, 14%) groups than the severe-symptoms group (n=8, 50%). Variation in the average carapacial temperatures of tortoises with severe URTD was significantly different from carapacial temperatures of mild and asymptomatic tortoises, suggesting differences in thermoregulatory behavior of severely ill tortoises. Our 15-yr recapture data suggest that, despite high prevalence of M. agassizii, population density has not decreased over time. However, emigration, especially of tortoises with severe clinical disease, may play an important role in dispersal and persistence of pathogens.


Assuntos
Regulação da Temperatura Corporal/fisiologia , Atividade Motora , Infecções por Mycoplasma/veterinária , Mycoplasma/isolamento & purificação , Infecções Respiratórias/veterinária , Tartarugas , Animais , Comportamento Animal , Feminino , Georgia/epidemiologia , Masculino , Infecções por Mycoplasma/epidemiologia , Vigilância da População , Infecções Respiratórias/epidemiologia , Infecções Respiratórias/microbiologia
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