This paper reveals the hotspots of new mite discovery through of a survey of type localities of new Trombidiformes species described in two journals (Systematic & Applied Acarology and Zootaxa) during the last three years (2013-2015). Taxonomically, the 491 new species of the Trombidiformes are highly unevenly distributed among 55 families with top 10 families accounting for over 66% of the total. The Eriophyidae is the top-ranked family. Geographically, these 491 new species are from 55 countries around the world and their distribution among the countries is highly uneven. The majority of these new species (69%) are from the top 10 countries and six of the top ten countries are also megadiversity countries. The top three countries are all from Asia (Iran, China and Malaysia) and they together accounted for over one third of all new species of the Trombidiformes described in the two journals during 2013-2015.
Studies have shown that certain features from geography, demography, trade area, and environment can play a vital role in retail site selection, largely due to the impact they asserted on retail performance. Although the relevant features could be elicited by domain experts, determining the optimal feature set can be intractable and labor-intensive exercise. The challenges center around (1) how to determine features that are important to a particular retail business and (2) how to estimate retail sales performance given a new location? The challenges become apparent when the features vary across time. In this light, this study proposed a nonintervening approach by employing feature selection algorithms and subsequently sales prediction through similarity-based methods. The results of prediction were validated by domain experts. In this study, data sets from different sources were transformed and aggregated before an analytics data set that is ready for analysis purpose could be obtained. The data sets included data about feature location, population count, property type, education status, and monthly sales from 96 branches of a telecommunication company in Malaysia. The finding suggested that (1) optimal retail performance can only be achieved through fulfillment of specific location features together with the surrounding trade area characteristics and (2) similarity-based method can provide solution to retail sales prediction.
Environmental protection is critical to maintain ecosystem services essential for human well-being. It is important to be able to rank countries by their environmental impact so that poor performers as well as policy 'models' can be identified. We provide novel metrics of country-specific environmental impact ranks - one proportional to total resource availability per country and an absolute (total) measure of impact - that explicitly avoid incorporating confounding human health or economic indicators. Our rankings are based on natural forest loss, habitat conversion, marine captures, fertilizer use, water pollution, carbon emissions and species threat, although many other variables were excluded due to a lack of country-specific data. Of 228 countries considered, 179 (proportional) and 171 (absolute) had sufficient data for correlations. The proportional index ranked Singapore, Korea, Qatar, Kuwait, Japan, Thailand, Bahrain, Malaysia, Philippines and Netherlands as having the highest proportional environmental impact, whereas Brazil, USA, China, Indonesia, Japan, Mexico, India, Russia, Australia and Peru had the highest absolute impact (i.e., total resource use, emissions and species threatened). Proportional and absolute environmental impact ranks were correlated, with mainly Asian countries having both high proportional and absolute impact. Despite weak concordance among the drivers of environmental impact, countries often perform poorly for different reasons. We found no evidence to support the environmental Kuznets curve hypothesis of a non-linear relationship between impact and per capita wealth, although there was a weak reduction in environmental impact as per capita wealth increases. Using structural equation models to account for cross-correlation, we found that increasing wealth was the most important driver of environmental impact. Our results show that the global community not only has to encourage better environmental performance in less-developed countries, especially those in Asia, there is also a requirement to focus on the development of environmentally friendly practices in wealthier countries.
The hypotheses that beta diversity should increase with decreasing latitude and increase with spatial extent of a region have rarely been tested based on a comparative analysis of multiple datasets, and no such study has focused on stream insects. We first assessed how well variability in beta diversity of stream insect metacommunities is predicted by insect group, latitude, spatial extent, altitudinal range, and dataset properties across multiple drainage basins throughout the world. Second, we assessed the relative roles of environmental and spatial factors in driving variation in assemblage composition within each drainage basin. Our analyses were based on a dataset of 95 stream insect metacommunities from 31 drainage basins distributed around the world. We used dissimilarity-based indices to quantify beta diversity for each metacommunity and, subsequently, regressed beta diversity on insect group, latitude, spatial extent, altitudinal range, and dataset properties (e.g., number of sites and percentage of presences). Within each metacommunity, we used a combination of spatial eigenfunction analyses and partial redundancy analysis to partition variation in assemblage structure into environmental, shared, spatial, and unexplained fractions. We found that dataset properties were more important predictors of beta diversity than ecological and geographical factors across multiple drainage basins. In the within-basin analyses, environmental and spatial variables were generally poor predictors of variation in assemblage composition. Our results revealed deviation from general biodiversity patterns because beta diversity did not show the expected decreasing trend with latitude. Our results also call for reconsideration of just how predictable stream assemblages are along ecological gradients, with implications for environmental assessment and conservation decisions. Our findings may also be applicable to other dynamic systems where predictability is low.
A new genus from Borneo, Borneocola Y.Y.Sam, is described here. The genus currently contains eight species previously classified as members of the Scaphochlamys Baker. The finding is based on the results of the morphological and molecular studies of Scaphochlamys throughout its geographical range and its closely allied sister groups, Distichochlamys M.F.Newman and Myxochlamys A.Takano & Nagam. Borneocola is nested within the tribe Zingibereae and its monophyly is strongly supported by both ITS and matK sequence data. The genus is characterised by several thin, translucent and marcescent floral bracts, absence of coloured streaks on the labellum and capitate stigma with two dorsal knobs. The genus is distributed in northwest Borneo and all species are very rare and highly endemic.
The genus Dichaetophora Duda comprises 61 described species classified into four species groups: agbo, tenuicauda, acutissima and sinensis. This genus is distributed exclusively in the Old World, and is rich in species in the tropical and subtropical areas of the Oriental, Australasian, and Afrotropical regions. In this paper, a new species group, the trilobita group, is established for six new species discovered from the Oriental region. The delimitation of these species is firstly performed in light of morphology and further with the aid of DNA sequences of the mitochondrial COI and COII (cytochrome c oxydase, subunits I and II, respectively) genes, considering also their respective geographical origins. Then, the new species (trilobita Yang & Gao, sp. n., heterochroma Yang & Gao, sp. n., flatosternata Yang & Gao, sp. n., borneoensis Yang & Gao, sp. n., javaensis Yang & Gao, sp. n., and sumatraensis Yang & Gao, sp. n.) are described, and a key, based on not only morphological but also molecular information, is provided.
Wild stocks of endangered mrigal carp, Cirrhinus cirrhosus (Bloch 1795), continues to decline rapidly in the Indo-Ganges river basin. With an objective to evaluate its population status, landmark-based morphometric and meristic variations among three different stocks viz., hatchery (Jessore), baor (Gopalganj) and river (Faridpur) in Bangladesh were studied. Significant differences were observed in 10 of the 15 morphometric measurements viz., head length, standard length, fork length, length of base of spinous, pre-orbital length, eye length, post-orbital length, length of upper jaw, height of pelvic fin and barbel length, two of the 8 meristic counts viz., scales above the lateral line and pectoral fin rays and 10 of the 22 truss network measurements viz., 1 to 10, 2 to 3, 2 to 8, 2 to 9, 2 to 10, 3 to 4, 3 to 8, 4 to 5, 4 to 7 and 9 to 10 among the stocks. For morphometric and landmark measurements, the 1st discriminant function (DF) accounted for 58.1% and the 2nd DF accounted for 41.9% of the among-group variability. In discriminant space, the river stock was isolated from the other two stocks. On the other hand, baor and hatchery stocks formed a very compact cluster. A dendrogram based on the hierarchical cluster analysis using morphometric and truss distance data placed the hatchery and baor in one cluster and the river in another cluster and the distance between the river and hatchery populations was the highest. Morphological differences among stocks are expected, because of their geographical isolation and their origin from different ancestors. The baseline information derived from the present study would be useful for genetic studies and in the assessment of environmental impacts on C. cirrhosus populations in Bangladesh.
The relationship between geographical diversification (GDI) and profitability (ROA) has yielded mixed findings across various developed countries. This study re-examined the relationship using data of public firms listed on the main market of Bursa Malaysia for the period of 2010-2014 using quantile regression approach. The firms are categorised into small firms and large firms based on the firm size median value. The empirical results show that GDI affects ROA heterogeneously in various quantile levels of the ROA for all firms, small firms and large firms. GDI significantly (positive relationship) influences ROA in the middle quantile region (from quantile 0.25 to 0.75) for all firms, in the low quantile region (from quantile 0.1 to 0.5) for the sample of small firms and in the high quantile region (from quantile 0.5 to 0.9) for the sample of large firms. Therefore, GDI activities could benefit firms, provided that the activities are conducted wisely by taking into account the profitability levels of firms as well as the size of firms. This study contributes to literature on geographical diversification by providing empirical support in the context of an emerging market.
"This paper discusses the patterns and trends in internal territorial mobility in Peninsular Malaysia from 1957 [to] the 1980s, focussing specially on the period of the 1980s." Data are from Peninsular Malaysian Labour Force Migration Sample Surveys.
As consumption of stingless bee honey has been gaining popularity in many countries including Malaysia, ability to identify accurately its geographical origin proves pertinent for investigating fraudulent activities for consumer protection. Because a chemical signature can be location-specific, multi-element distribution patterns may prove useful for provenancing such product. Using the inductively coupled-plasma optical emission spectrometer as well as principal component analysis (PCA) and linear discriminant analysis (LDA), the distributions of multi-elements in stingless bee honey collected at four different geographical locations (North, West, East, and South) in Johor, Malaysia, were investigated. While cross-validation using PCA demonstrated 87.0% correct classification rate, the same was improved (96.2%) with the use of LDA, indicating that discrimination was possible for the different geographical regions. Therefore, utilization of multi-element analysis coupled with chemometrics techniques for assigning the provenance of stingless bee honeys for forensic applications is supported.
The development of timber tracking methods based on genetic markers can provide scientific evidence to verify the origin of timber products and fulfill the growing requirement for sustainable forestry practices. In this study, the origin of an important Dark Red Meranti wood, Shorea platyclados, was studied by using the combination of seven chloroplast DNA and 15 short tandem repeats (STRs) markers. A total of 27 natural populations of S. platyclados were sampled throughout Malaysia to establish population level and individual level identification databases. A haplotype map was generated from chloroplast DNA sequencing for population identification, resulting in 29 multilocus haplotypes, based on 39 informative intraspecific variable sites. Subsequently, a DNA profiling database was developed from 15 STRs allowing for individual identification in Malaysia. Cluster analysis divided the 27 populations into two genetic clusters, corresponding to the region of Eastern and Western Malaysia. The conservativeness tests showed that the Malaysia database is conservative after removal of bias from population subdivision and sampling effects. Independent self-assignment tests correctly assigned individuals to the database in an overall 60.60-94.95% of cases for identified populations, and in 98.99-99.23% of cases for identified regions. Both the chloroplast DNA database and the STRs appear to be useful for tracking timber originating in Malaysia. Hence, this DNA-based method could serve as an effective addition tool to the existing forensic timber identification system for ensuring the sustainably management of this species into the future.
The epidemiology of non-typeable Haemophilus influenzae (NTHi) remains poorly understood. We therefore sought to determine the genetic relationship of 25 NTHi isolated from various states in Malaysia using multilocus sequence typing (MLST). The majority of isolates were obtained from sputum. There were 24 novel sequence types (STs). Eight isolates were single-locus variants, the remainder being singletons. Clustering was not based on clinical site of isolation or geographical origin. Despite the limited number of isolates examined in this study, we demonstrate that NTHi isolates in Malaysia are diverse and warrant further investigation.
The simuliid fauna of the Oriental Region is reviewed in comparison with those in five other zoogeographical regions. It is relatively young, represented by only one genus Simulium, which is regarded as the most specialized among 26 genera of the family Simuliidae. The Oriental Region has the second largest simuliid fauna with 524 species or 23.8% of the world total of 2204 extant species. This species richness is associated with a high speciation index (15.4), reflected especially by the high speciation rates of two dominant subgenera Gomphostilbia and Simulium although the number of lineages in the Oriental Region is moderate (34 or 20.6% of the total 165). The Oriental fauna has relationships with all other zoogeographical regions at the lineage level, having the highest affinity index (31.9) with the Palearctic Region. It is inferred that eight of 10 Oriental subgenera moved during the ice ages from the Palaearctic to the Oriental Regions; the subgenus Gomphostilbia evolved into 11 species-groups and underwent species radiation in the Oriental Region. On the other hand, two other subgenera, Nevermannia and Simulium, moved southward during the ice ages after evolving into species-groups. In the post-ice ages, most lineages retreated northward, with different portions of species left in the Oriental Region, although some lineages failed to retreat and survived as relict lineages in the Oriental Region.
In this project, a Geographic Information System (GIS) was used to collect and compile various field data in the Pedro Vicente Maldonado Ecuadorian Scientific Station Antarctica Base area. The main source of data was obtained from a global positioning system (GPS) survey using kinematic GPS (GPS-RTK) which allowed continuous point mapping in the terrain. GPS units were utilized in the collection of spatial data for all field work. The co-ordinates obtained were used to produce a point map which was then exported into GIS software where the proximity of cartographic phenomena and boundaries were mapped. All the collected data were subsequently gathered to develop the GIS database which was then used to generate and compile different maps to test for spatial and temporal relationships. The output of the project comprises a GIS database, spatial maps and 3D terrain model of the area. The developed GIS database can be used with other ecological datasets to provide biogeographical information, potential range distribution and sampling adequacy. The database is also applicable to geographical management and multi-disciplinary research projects.
The rapid expansion of oil palm cultivation in the Neotropics has generated great debate around possible biodiversity impacts. Colombia, for example, is the largest producer of oil palm in the Americas, but the effects of oil palm cultivation on native fauna are poorly understood. Here, we compared how richness, abundance and composition of terrestrial mammal species differ between oil palm plantations and riparian forest in the Colombian Llanos region. Further, we determined the relationships and influence of landscape and habitat level variables on those metrics. We found that species richness and composition differed significantly between riparian forest and oil palm, with site level richness inside oil palm plantations 47% lower, on average, than in riparian forest. Within plantations, mammalian species richness was strongly negatively correlated with cattle abundance, and positively correlated with the density of undergrowth vegetation. Forest structure characteristics appeared to have weak and similar effects on determining mammal species richness and composition along riparian forest strips. Composition at the landscape level was significantly influenced by cover type, percentage of remaining forest and the distance to the nearest town, whereas within oil palm sites, understory vegetation, cattle relative abundance, and canopy cover had significant effects on community composition. Species specific abundance responses varied between land cover types, with oil palm having positive effects on mesopredators, insectivores and grazers. Our findings suggest that increasing habitat complexity, avoiding cattle and retaining native riparian forest-regardless of its structure-inside oil palm-dominated landscapes would help support higher native mammal richness and abundance at both local and landscape scales.
One of the most efficient methods to observe the impact of geographical, environmental, and geological changes is remote sensing. Nowadays, nanosatellites are being used to observe climate change using remote sensing technology. Communication between a remote sensing nanosatellite and Earth significantly depends upon antenna systems. Body-mounted solar panels are the main source of satellite operating power unless deployable solar panels are used. Lower ultra-high frequency (UHF) nanosatellite antenna design is a crucial challenge due to the physical size constraint and the need for solar panel integration. Moreover, nanosatellite space missions are vulnerable because of antenna and solar panel deployment complexity. This paper proposes a solar panel-integrated modified planner inverted F antenna (PIFA) to mitigate these crucial limitations. The antenna consists of a slotted rectangular radiating patch with coaxial probe feeding and a rectangular ground plane. The proposed antenna has achieved a -10 dB impedance bandwidth of 6.0 MHz (447.5 MHz⁻453.5 MHz) with a small-sized (80 mm× 90 mm× 0.5 mm) radiating element. In addition, the antenna achieved a maximum realized gain of 0.6 dB and a total efficiency of 67.45% with the nanosatellite structure and a solar panel. The challenges addressed by the proposed antenna are to ensure solar panel placement between the radiating element and the ground plane, and provide approximately 55% open space to allow solar irradiance into the solar panel.