Displaying publications 1 - 20 of 304 in total

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  1. Brändle J, Kunert N
    Tree Physiol., 2019 Oct 14.
    PMID: 31631217 DOI: 10.1093/treephys/tpz104
    Tree autotrophic respiratory processes, especially stem respiration or stem CO2 efflux (Estem), are important components of the forest carbon budget. Despite the efforts to investigate the controlling processes of Estem in the last years a considerable lack in our knowledge remains on the abiotic and biotic drivers affecting Estem dynamics. It has been strongly advocated that long-term measurements would shed light into those processes. The expensive scientific instruments needed to measure gas exchange has prevented from applying Estem measurements on a larger temporal and spatial scale. Here, we present an automated closed dynamic chamber system based on inexpensive and industrially broadly applied CO2 sensors reducing the costs for the sensing system to a minimum. The CO2 sensor was cross-calibrated with a commonly used gas exchange system in the laboratory and in the field, and we found very good accordance of these sensors. We tested the system under harsh tropical climatic conditions, characterized by heavy tropical rainfall events, extreme humidity, and temperatures, in a moist lowland forest in Malaysia. We recorded Estem of three Dyera costulata trees with our prototype over various days. The variation of Estem was large among the three tree individuals and varied by 7.5-fold. However, clear diurnal changes in Estem were present in all three tree individuals. One tree showed high diurnal variation in Estem and the relationship between Estem and temperature was characterized by a strong hysteresis. The large variations found within one single tree species highlights the importance of continuous measurement to quantify ecosystem carbon fluxes.
    Matched MeSH terms: Tropical Climate
  2. Bongalov B, Burslem DFRP, Jucker T, Thompson SED, Rosindell J, Swinfield T, et al.
    Ecol. Lett., 2019 Oct;22(10):1608-1619.
    PMID: 31347263 DOI: 10.1111/ele.13357
    Both niche and stochastic dispersal processes structure the extraordinary diversity of tropical plants, but determining their relative contributions has proven challenging. We address this question using airborne imaging spectroscopy to estimate canopy β-diversity for an extensive region of a Bornean rainforest and challenge these data with models incorporating niches and dispersal. We show that remotely sensed and field-derived estimates of pairwise dissimilarity in community composition are closely matched, proving the applicability of imaging spectroscopy to provide β-diversity data for entire landscapes of over 1000 ha containing contrasting forest types. Our model reproduces the empirical data well and shows that the ecological processes maintaining tropical forest diversity are scale dependent. Patterns of β-diversity are shaped by stochastic dispersal processes acting locally whilst environmental processes act over a wider range of scales.
    Matched MeSH terms: Tropical Climate
  3. Tahir AA, Mohd Barnoh NF, Yusof N, Mohd Said NN, Utsumi M, Yen AM, et al.
    Microbes Environ., 2019 Jun 27;34(2):161-168.
    PMID: 31019143 DOI: 10.1264/jsme2.ME18117
    Oil palm empty fruit bunches (OPEFB) are the most abundant, inexpensive, and environmentally friendly lignocellulosic biomass in Malaysia. Investigations on the microbial diversity of decaying OPEFB may reveal microbes with complex enzymes that have the potential to enhance the conversion of lignocellulose into second-generation biofuels as well as the production of other value-added products. In the present study, fungal and bacterial diversities in decaying OPEFB were identified using Illumina MiSeq sequencing of the V3 region of the 16S rRNA gene and V4 region of the 18S rRNA gene. Fungal diversity in decaying OPEFB was dominated by the phylum Ascomycota (14.43%), while most of the bacterial sequences retrieved belonged to Proteobacteria (76.71%). Three bacterial strains isolated from decaying OPEFB, designated as S18, S20, and S36, appeared to grow with extracted OPEFB-lignin and Kraft lignin (KL) as the sole carbon source. 16S rRNA gene sequencing identified the 3 isolates as Paenibacillus sp.. The molecular weight distribution of KL before and after degradation showed significant depolymerization when treated with bacterial strains S18, S20, and S36. The presence of low-molecular-weight lignin-related compounds, such as vanillin and 2-methoxyphenol derivatives, which were detected by a GC-MS analysis, confirmed the KL-degrading activities of isolated Paenibacillus strains.
    Matched MeSH terms: Tropical Climate
  4. Goh HW, Lem KS, Azizan NA, Chang CK, Talei A, Leow CS, et al.
    Environ Sci Pollut Res Int, 2019 May;26(15):14904-14919.
    PMID: 30977005 DOI: 10.1007/s11356-019-05041-0
    Bioretention systems have been implemented as stormwater best management practices (BMPs) worldwide to treat non-point sources pollution. Due to insufficient research, the design guidelines for bioretention systems in tropical countries are modeled after those of temperate countries. However, climatic factors and stormwater runoff characteristics are the two key factors affecting the capacity of bioretention system. This paper reviews and compares the stormwater runoff characteristics, bioretention components, pollutant removal requirements, and applications of bioretention systems in temperate and tropical countries. Suggestions are given for bioretention components in the tropics, including elimination of mulch layer and submerged zone. More research is required to identify suitable additives for filter media, study tropical shrubs application while avoiding using grass and sedges, explore function of soil faunas, and adopt final discharged pollutants concentration (mg/L) on top of percentage removal (%) in bioretention design guidelines.
    Matched MeSH terms: Tropical Climate
  5. Dhandapani S, Ritz K, Evers S, Yule CM, Sjögersten S
    Sci. Total Environ., 2019 Mar 10;655:220-231.
    PMID: 30471590 DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2018.11.046
    Tropical peatlands are globally important ecosystems with high C storage and are endangered by anthropogenic disturbances. Microbes in peatlands play an important role in sustaining the functions of peatlands as a C sink, yet their characteristics in these habitats are poorly understood. This research aimed to elucidate the responses of these complex ecosystems to disturbance by exploring greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, nutrient contents, soil microbial communities and the functional interactions between these components in a primary and secondary peat swamp forest in Peninsular Malaysia. GHG measurements using closed chambers, and peat sampling were carried out in both wet and dry seasons. Microbial community phenotypes and nutrient content were determined using phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA) and inductively-coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) analyses respectively. CO2 emissions in the secondary peat swamp forest were > 50% higher than in the primary forest. CH4 emission rates were ca. 2 mg m-2 h-1 in the primary forest but the secondary forest was a CH4 sink, showing no seasonal variations in GHG emissions. Almost all the nutrient concentrations were significantly lower in the secondary forest, postulated to be due to nutrient leaching via drainage and higher rates of decomposition. Cu and Mo concentrations were negatively correlated with CO2 and CH4 emissions respectively. Microbial community structure was overwhelmingly dominated by bacteria in both forest types, however it was highly sensitive to land-use change and season. Gram-positive and Gram-negative relative abundance were positively correlated with CO2 and CH4 emissions respectively. Drainage related disturbances increased CO2 emissions, by reducing the nutrient content including some with known antimicrobial properties (Cu & Na) and by favouring Gram-positive bacteria over Gram-negative bacteria. These results suggest that the biogeochemistry of secondary peat swamp forest is fundamentally different from that of primary peat swamp forest, and these differences have significant functional impacts on their respective environments.
    Matched MeSH terms: Tropical Climate
  6. Both S, Riutta T, Paine CET, Elias DMO, Cruz RS, Jain A, et al.
    New Phytol., 2019 03;221(4):1853-1865.
    PMID: 30238458 DOI: 10.1111/nph.15444
    Plant functional traits regulate ecosystem functions but little is known about how co-occurring gradients of land use and edaphic conditions influence their expression. We test how gradients of logging disturbance and soil properties relate to community-weighted mean traits in logged and old-growth tropical forests in Borneo. We studied 32 physical, chemical and physiological traits from 284 tree species in eight 1 ha plots and measured long-term soil nutrient supplies and plant-available nutrients. Logged plots had greater values for traits that drive carbon capture and growth, whilst old-growth forests had greater values for structural and persistence traits. Although disturbance was the primary driver of trait expression, soil nutrients explained a statistically independent axis of variation linked to leaf size and nutrient concentration. Soil characteristics influenced trait expression via nutrient availability, nutrient pools, and pH. Our finding, that traits have dissimilar responses to land use and soil resource availability, provides robust evidence for the need to consider the abiotic context of logging when predicting plant functional diversity across human-modified tropical forests. The detection of two independent axes was facilitated by the measurement of many more functional traits than have been examined in previous studies.
    Matched MeSH terms: Tropical Climate
  7. Ghaffarianhoseini A, Berardi U, Ghaffarianhoseini A, Al-Obaidi K
    Sci. Total Environ., 2019 Jan 26.
    PMID: 30857724 DOI: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2019.01.284
    The rapid urban expansion in East-Asian cities has increased the need for comfortable public spaces. This study presents field measurements and parametric simulations to evaluate the microclimatic characteristics in a university campus in the tropical climate of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. The study attempts to identify the thermally uncomfortable areas and their physical and design characteristics while debating on the circumstances of enhancing the outdoor comfort conditions for the campus users. Simulations in Envi-met and IES-VE are used to investigate the current outdoor thermal conditions, using classic thermal metric indices. Findings show high levels of thermal discomfort in most of the studied spaces. As a result, suggestions to improve the design quality of outdoor areas optimizing their thermal comfort conditions are proposed. The study concludes that effective re-design of outdoor spaces in the tropics, through adequate attention to the significant impacts of shading and vegetation, can result in achieving outdoor spaces with high frequency of use and improved comfort level.
    Matched MeSH terms: Tropical Climate
  8. Hara H, Yusaimi YA, Zulkeflle SNM, Sugiura N, Iwamoto K, Goto M, et al.
    J. Gen. Appl. Microbiol., 2019 Jan 24;64(6):284-292.
    PMID: 29877296 DOI: 10.2323/jgam.2018.02.003
    The emergence of antibiotic resistance among multidrug-resistant (MDR) microbes is of growing concern, and threatens public health globally. A total of 129 Escherichia coli isolates were recovered from lowland aqueous environments near hospitals and medical service centers in the vicinity of Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Among the eleven antibacterial agents tested, the isolates were highly resistant to trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole (83.7%) and nalidixic acid (71.3%) and moderately resistant to ampicillin and chloramphenicol (66.7%), tetracycline (65.1%), fosfomycin (57.4%), cefotaxime (57.4%), and ciprofloxacin (57.4%), while low resistance levels were found with aminoglycosides (kanamycin, 22.5%; gentamicin, 21.7%). The presence of relevant resistance determinants was evaluated, and the genotypic resistance determinants were as follows: sulfonamides (sulI, sulII, and sulIII), trimethoprim (dfrA1 and dfrA5), quinolones (qnrS), β-lactams (ampC and blaCTX-M), chloramphenicol (cmlA1 and cat2), tetracycline (tetA and tetM), fosfomycin (fosA and fosA3), and aminoglycosides (aphA1 and aacC2). Our data suggest that multidrug-resistant E. coli strains are ubiquitous in the aquatic systems of tropical countries and indicate that hospital wastewater may contribute to this phenomenon.
    Matched MeSH terms: Tropical Climate
  9. Ashton LA, Griffiths HM, Parr CL, Evans TA, Didham RK, Hasan F, et al.
    Science, 2019 01 11;363(6423):174-177.
    PMID: 30630931 DOI: 10.1126/science.aau9565
    Termites perform key ecological functions in tropical ecosystems, are strongly affected by variation in rainfall, and respond negatively to habitat disturbance. However, it is not known how the projected increase in frequency and severity of droughts in tropical rainforests will alter termite communities and the maintenance of ecosystem processes. Using a large-scale termite suppression experiment, we found that termite activity and abundance increased during drought in a Bornean forest. This increase resulted in accelerated litter decomposition, elevated soil moisture, greater soil nutrient heterogeneity, and higher seedling survival rates during the extreme El Niño drought of 2015-2016. Our work shows how an invertebrate group enhances ecosystem resistance to drought, providing evidence that the dual stressors of climate change and anthropogenic shifts in biotic communities will have various negative consequences for the maintenance of rainforest ecosystems.
    Matched MeSH terms: Tropical Climate
  10. Arellano G, Medina NG, Tan S, Mohamad M, Davies SJ
    New Phytol., 2019 01;221(1):169-179.
    PMID: 30067290 DOI: 10.1111/nph.15381
    What causes individual tree death in tropical forests remains a major gap in our understanding of the biology of tropical trees and leads to significant uncertainty in predicting global carbon cycle dynamics. We measured individual characteristics (diameter at breast height, wood density, growth rate, crown illumination and crown form) and environmental conditions (soil fertility and habitat suitability) for 26 425 trees ≥ 10 cm diameter at breast height belonging to 416 species in a 52-ha plot in Lambir Hills National Park, Malaysia. We used structural equation models to investigate the relationships among the different factors and tree mortality. Crown form (a proxy for mechanical damage and other stresses) and prior growth were the two most important factors related to mortality. The effect of all variables on mortality (except habitat suitability) was substantially greater than expected by chance. Tree death is the result of interactions between factors, including direct and indirect effects. Crown form/damage and prior growth mediated most of the effect of tree size, wood density, fertility and habitat suitability on mortality. Large-scale assessment of crown form or status may result in improved prediction of individual tree death at the landscape scale.
    Matched MeSH terms: Tropical Climate
  11. Ramli SR, Moreira GMSG, Zantow J, Goris MGA, Nguyen VK, Novoselova N, et al.
    PLoS Negl Trop Dis, 2019 01;13(1):e0007131.
    PMID: 30677033 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pntd.0007131
    BACKGROUND: Leptospirosis is the most common zoonotic disease worldwide. The diagnostic performance of a serological test for human leptospirosis is mainly influenced by the antigen used in the test assay. An ideal serological test should cover all serovars of pathogenic leptospires with high sensitivity and specificity and use reagents that are relatively inexpensive to produce and can be used in tropical climates. Peptide-based tests fulfil at least the latter two requirements, and ORFeome phage display has been successfully used to identify immunogenic peptides from other pathogens.

    METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Two ORFeome phage display libraries of the entire Leptospira spp. genomes from five local strains isolated in Malaysia and seven WHO reference strains were constructed. Subsequently, 18 unique Leptospira peptides were identified in a screen using a pool of sera from patients with acute leptospirosis. Five of these were validated by titration ELISA using different pools of patient or control sera. The diagnostic performance of these five peptides was then assessed against 16 individual sera from patients with acute leptospirosis and 16 healthy donors and was compared to that of two recombinant reference proteins from L. interrogans. This analysis revealed two peptides (SIR16-D1 and SIR16-H1) from the local isolates with good accuracy for the detection of acute leptospirosis (area under the ROC curve: 0.86 and 0.78, respectively; sensitivity: 0.88 and 0.94; specificity: 0.81 and 0.69), which was close to that of the reference proteins LipL32 and Loa22 (area under the ROC curve: 0.91 and 0.80; sensitivity: 0.94 and 0.81; specificity: 0.75 and 0.75).

    CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: This analysis lends further support for using ORFeome phage display to identify pathogen-associated immunogenic peptides, and it suggests that this technique holds promise for the development of peptide-based diagnostics for leptospirosis and, possibly, of vaccines against this pathogen.

    Matched MeSH terms: Tropical Climate
  12. Hayakawa T, Nathan SKSS, Stark DJ, Saldivar DAR, Sipangkui R, Goossens B, et al.
    Environ Microbiol Rep, 2018 12;10(6):655-662.
    PMID: 29992728 DOI: 10.1111/1758-2229.12677
    Foregut fermentation is well known to occur in a wide range of mammalian species and in a single bird species. Yet, the foregut microbial community of free-ranging, foregut-fermenting monkeys, that is, colobines, has not been investigated so far. We analysed the foregut microbiomes in four free-ranging proboscis monkeys (Nasalis larvatus) from two different tropical habitats with varying plant diversity (mangrove and riverine forests), in an individual from a semi-free-ranging setting with supplemental feeding, and in an individual from captivity, using high-throughput sequencing based on 16S ribosomal RNA genes. We found a decrease in foregut microbial diversity from a diverse natural habitat (riverine forest) to a low diverse natural habitat (mangrove forest), to human-related environments. Of a total of 2700 bacterial operational taxonomic units (OTUs) detected in all environments, only 153 OTUs were shared across all individuals, suggesting that they were not influenced by diet or habitat. These OTUs were dominated by Firmicutes and Proteobacteria. The relative abundance of the habitat-specific microbial communities showed a wide range of differences among living environments, although such bacterial communities appeared to be dominated by Firmicutes and Bacteroidetes, suggesting that those phyla are key to understanding the adaptive strategy in proboscis monkeys living in different habitats.
    Matched MeSH terms: Tropical Climate
  13. Le DQ, Satyanarayana B, Fui SY, Shirai K
    Biol Trace Elem Res, 2018 Dec;186(2):538-545.
    PMID: 29577182 DOI: 10.1007/s12011-018-1313-2
    The present study, aimed at observing the total concentration of mercury (Hg) in edible finfish species with an implication to human health risk, was carried out from the Setiu mangrove wetlands on the east coast of Peninsular Malaysia. Out of 20 species observed, the highest Hg concentrations were found among carnivores-fish/invertebrate-feeders, followed by omnivores and carnivores-invertebrate-feeders, while the lowest concentrations in herbivores. The Hg concentrations varied widely with fish species and body size, from 0.12 to 2.10 mg/kg dry weight. A positive relationship between body weight and Hg concentration was observed in particular for Toxotes jaculatrix and Tetraodon nigroviridis. Besides the permissible range of Hg concentration up to 0.3 mg/kg (cf. United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA)) in majority of species, the carnivore feeders such as Acanthopagrus pacificus, Gerres filamentosus, and Caranx ignobilis have shown excess amounts (> 0.40 mg/kg flesh weight) that raising concerns over the consumption by local people. However, the weekly intake of mercury-estimated through the fish consumption in all three trophic levels-suggests that the present Hg concentrations are still within the range of Provisional Tolerable Weekly Intake (PTWI) reported by the Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives (JECFA). Perhaps, a multi-species design for Hg monitoring at Setiu wetlands would be able to provide further insights into the level of toxicity transfer among other aquatic organisms and thereby a strong health risk assessment for the local communities.
    Matched MeSH terms: Tropical Climate
  14. Venkataraman VV, Yegian AK, Wallace IJ, Holowka NB, Tacey I, Gurven M, et al.
    Proc. Biol. Sci., 2018 11 07;285(1890).
    PMID: 30404871 DOI: 10.1098/rspb.2018.1492
    The convergent evolution of the human pygmy phenotype in tropical rainforests is widely assumed to reflect adaptation in response to the distinct ecological challenges of this habitat (e.g. high levels of heat and humidity, high pathogen load, low food availability, and dense forest structure), yet few precise adaptive benefits of this phenotype have been proposed. Here, we describe and test a biomechanical model of how the rainforest environment can alter gait kinematics such that short stature is advantageous in dense habitats. We hypothesized that environmental constraints on step length in rainforests alter walking mechanics such that taller individuals are expected to walk more slowly due to their inability to achieve preferred step lengths in the rainforest. We tested predictions from this model with experimental field data from two short-statured populations that regularly forage in the rainforest: the Batek of Peninsular Malaysia and the Tsimane of the Bolivian Amazon. In accordance with model expectations, we found stature-dependent constraints on step length in the rainforest and concomitant reductions in walking speed that are expected to compromise foraging efficiency. These results provide the first evidence that the human pygmy phenotype is beneficial in terms of locomotor performance and highlight the value of applying laboratory-derived biomechanical models to field settings for testing evolutionary hypotheses.
    Matched MeSH terms: Tropical Climate
  15. Johnson DJ, Needham J, Xu C, Massoud EC, Davies SJ, Anderson-Teixeira KJ, et al.
    Nat Ecol Evol, 2018 09;2(9):1436-1442.
    PMID: 30104751 DOI: 10.1038/s41559-018-0626-z
    Survival rates of large trees determine forest biomass dynamics. Survival rates of small trees have been linked to mechanisms that maintain biodiversity across tropical forests. How species survival rates change with size offers insight into the links between biodiversity and ecosystem function across tropical forests. We tested patterns of size-dependent tree survival across the tropics using data from 1,781 species and over 2 million individuals to assess whether tropical forests can be characterized by size-dependent life-history survival strategies. We found that species were classifiable into four 'survival modes' that explain life-history variation that shapes carbon cycling and the relative abundance within forests. Frequently collected functional traits, such as wood density, leaf mass per area and seed mass, were not generally predictive of the survival modes of species. Mean annual temperature and cumulative water deficit predicted the proportion of biomass of survival modes, indicating important links between evolutionary strategies, climate and carbon cycling. The application of survival modes in demographic simulations predicted biomass change across forest sites. Our results reveal globally identifiable size-dependent survival strategies that differ across diverse systems in a consistent way. The abundance of survival modes and interaction with climate ultimately determine forest structure, carbon storage in biomass and future forest trajectories.
    Matched MeSH terms: Tropical Climate*
  16. Sabri NSA, Zakaria Z, Mohamad SE, Jaafar AB, Hara H
    Microbes Environ., 2018 Jul 04;33(2):144-150.
    PMID: 29709895 DOI: 10.1264/jsme2.ME17181
    A soil cooling system that prepares soil for temperate soil temperatures for the growth of temperate crops under a tropical climate is described herein. Temperate agriculture has been threatened by the negative impact of temperature increases caused by climate change. Soil temperature closely correlates with the growth of temperate crops, and affects plant processes and soil microbial diversity. The present study focuses on the effects of soil temperatures on lettuce growth and soil microbial diversity that maintains the growth of lettuce at low soil temperatures. A model temperate crop, loose leaf lettuce, was grown on eutrophic soil under soil cooling and a number of parameters, such as fresh weight, height, the number of leaves, and root length, were evaluated upon harvest. Under soil cooling, significant differences were observed in the average fresh weight (P<0.05) and positive development of the roots, shoots, and leaves of lettuce. Janthinobacterium (8.142%), Rhodoplanes (1.991%), Arthrospira (1.138%), Flavobacterium (0.857%), Sphingomonas (0.790%), Mycoplana (0.726%), and Pseudomonas (0.688%) were the dominant bacterial genera present in cooled soil. Key soil fungal communities, including Pseudaleuria (18.307%), Phoma (9.968%), Eocronartium (3.527%), Trichosporon (1.791%), and Pyrenochaeta (0.171%), were also recovered from cooled soil. The present results demonstrate that the growth of temperate crops is dependent on soil temperature, which subsequently affects the abundance and diversity of soil microbial communities that maintain the growth of temperate crops at low soil temperatures.
    Matched MeSH terms: Tropical Climate*
  17. Riutta T, Malhi Y, Kho LK, Marthews TR, Huaraca Huasco W, Khoo M, et al.
    Glob Chang Biol, 2018 07;24(7):2913-2928.
    PMID: 29364562 DOI: 10.1111/gcb.14068
    Tropical forests play a major role in the carbon cycle of the terrestrial biosphere. Recent field studies have provided detailed descriptions of the carbon cycle of mature tropical forests, but logged or secondary forests have received much less attention. Here, we report the first measures of total net primary productivity (NPP) and its allocation along a disturbance gradient from old-growth forests to moderately and heavily logged forests in Malaysian Borneo. We measured the main NPP components (woody, fine root and canopy NPP) in old-growth (n = 6) and logged (n = 5) 1 ha forest plots. Overall, the total NPP did not differ between old-growth and logged forest (13.5 ± 0.5 and 15.7 ± 1.5 Mg C ha-1  year-1 respectively). However, logged forests allocated significantly higher fraction into woody NPP at the expense of the canopy NPP (42% and 48% into woody and canopy NPP, respectively, in old-growth forest vs 66% and 23% in logged forest). When controlling for local stand structure, NPP in logged forest stands was 41% higher, and woody NPP was 150% higher than in old-growth stands with similar basal area, but this was offset by structure effects (higher gap frequency and absence of large trees in logged forest). This pattern was not driven by species turnover: the average woody NPP of all species groups within logged forest (pioneers, nonpioneers, species unique to logged plots and species shared with old-growth plots) was similar. Hence, below a threshold of very heavy disturbance, logged forests can exhibit higher NPP and higher allocation to wood; such shifts in carbon cycling persist for decades after the logging event. Given that the majority of tropical forest biome has experienced some degree of logging, our results demonstrate that logging can cause substantial shifts in carbon production and allocation in tropical forests.
    Matched MeSH terms: Tropical Climate*
  18. Jucker T, Bongalov B, Burslem DFRP, Nilus R, Dalponte M, Lewis SL, et al.
    Ecol. Lett., 2018 07;21(7):989-1000.
    PMID: 29659115 DOI: 10.1111/ele.12964
    Topography is a key driver of tropical forest structure and composition, as it constrains local nutrient and hydraulic conditions within which trees grow. Yet, we do not fully understand how changes in forest physiognomy driven by topography impact other emergent properties of forests, such as their aboveground carbon density (ACD). Working in Borneo - at a site where 70-m-tall forests in alluvial valleys rapidly transition to stunted heath forests on nutrient-depleted dip slopes - we combined field data with airborne laser scanning and hyperspectral imaging to characterise how topography shapes the vertical structure, wood density, diversity and ACD of nearly 15 km2 of old-growth forest. We found that subtle differences in elevation - which control soil chemistry and hydrology - profoundly influenced the structure, composition and diversity of the canopy. Capturing these processes was critical to explaining landscape-scale heterogeneity in ACD, highlighting how emerging remote sensing technologies can provide new insights into long-standing ecological questions.
    Matched MeSH terms: Tropical Climate*
  19. Psomas E, Holdsworth S, Eggleton P
    J. Morphol., 2018 07;279(7):981-996.
    PMID: 29676002 DOI: 10.1002/jmor.20828
    Pselaphinae is a species-rich beetle subfamily found globally, with many exhibiting myrmecophily-a symbiotic association with ants. Pselaphine-ant associations vary from facultative to obligate, but direct behavioral observations still remain scarce. Pselaphines are speciose and ecologically abundant within tropical leaf litter invertebrate communities where ants dominate, implying a potentially important ecological role that may be affected by habitat disturbances that impact ants. In this study, we measured and analyzed putative functional traits of leaf litter pselaphines associated with myrmecophily through morphometric analysis. We calculated "myrmecophile functional diversity" of pselaphines at different sites and examined this measure's relationship with ant abundance, in both old growth and logged rainforest sites in Sabah, Borneo. We show that myrmecophile functional diversity of pselaphine beetles increases as ant abundance increases. Old growth rainforest sites support a high abundance of ants, which is associated with a high abundance of probable myrmecophilous pselaphines. These results suggest a potential link between adult morphological characters and the functional role these beetles play in rainforest litter as ecological interaction partners with ants.
    Matched MeSH terms: Tropical Climate*
  20. Omar TFT, Aris AZ, Yusoff FM, Mustafa S
    Mar. Pollut. Bull., 2018 Jun;131(Pt A):284-293.
    PMID: 29886949 DOI: 10.1016/j.marpolbul.2018.04.019
    This baseline assessment reports on the occurrence, distribution, and sources of emerging organic contaminants (EOCs) in tropical coastal sediments of anthropogenically impacted Klang River estuary, Malaysia. Bisphenol A was the highest concentration detected at 16.84 ng g-1 dry weight, followed by diclofenac (13.88 ng g-1 dry weight) and E1 (12.47 ng g-1 dry weight). Five compounds, namely, amoxicillin, progesterone, diazinon, bisphenol A, and E1, were found in all sampling stations assessed, and other compounds such as primidone, diclofenac, testosterone, E2, and EE2 were ubiquitously present in sediment samples, with percentage of detection range from 89.04% to 98.38%. Organic carbon content and pH were the important factors controlling the fate of targeted compounds in the tropical estuarine sediment. On the basis of the literature from other studies, the sources of EOCs are thought to be from wastewater treatment plants, domestic/medical waste discharge, livestock activities, industrial waste discharge, and agricultural activities.
    Matched MeSH terms: Tropical Climate
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