Numeric abundance, identity and pH preferences of methanotrophic Gammaproteobacteria (type I methanotrophs) inhabiting the northern acidic wetlands were studied. The rates of methane oxidation by peat samples from six-wetlands of European Northern Russia (pH 3.9-4.7) varied from 0.04 to 0.60 µg CH4 g(-1) peat h(-1). The number of cells revealed by hybridization with fluorochrome-labeled probes M84 + M705 specific for type I methanotrophs was 0.05-2.16 x 10(5) cells g(-1) dry peat, i.e. 0.4-12.5% of the total number of methanotrophs and 0.004-0.39% of the total number of bacteria. Analysis of the fragments of the pmoA gene encoding particulate methane monooxygenase revealed predominance of the genus Methylocystis (92% of the clones) in the studied sample of acidic peat, while the proportion of the pmoA sequences of type I methanotrophs was insignificant (8%). PCR amplification of the 16S rRNA gene fragments of type I methanotrophs with TypeIF-Type IR primers had low specificity, since only three sequences out of 53 analyzed belonged to methanotrophs and exhibited 93-99% similarity to those of Methylovulum, Methylomonas, and Methylobacter species. Isolates of type I methanotrophs obtained from peat (strains SH10 and 83A5) were identified as members of the species Methylomonaspaludis and Methylovulum miyakonense, respectively. Only Methylomonaspaludum SH10 was capable of growth in acidic media (pH range for growth 3.8-7.2 with the optimum at pH 5.8-6.2), while Methylovulum miyakonense 83A5 exhibited the typical growth characteristics of neutrophilic methanotrophs (pH range for growth 5.5-8.0 with the optimum at pH 6.5-7.5).
Northern wetlands make up a substantial terrestrial carbon sink and are often dominated by decay-resistant Sphagnum mosses. Recent studies have shown that planctomycetes appear to be involved in degradation of Sphagnum-derived debris. Novel trimethylornithine (TMO) lipids have recently been characterized as abundant lipids in various Sphagnum wetland planctomycete isolates, but their occurrence in the environment has not yet been confirmed. We applied a combined intact polar lipid (IPL) and molecular analysis of peat cores collected from two northern wetlands (Saxnäs Mosse [Sweden] and Obukhovskoye [Russia]) in order to investigate the preferred niche and abundance of TMO-producing planctomycetes. TMOs were present throughout the profiles of Sphagnum bogs, but their concentration peaked at the oxic/anoxic interface, which coincided with a maximum abundance of planctomycete-specific 16S rRNA gene sequences. The sequences detected at the oxic/anoxic interface were affiliated with the Isosphaera group, while sequences present in the anoxic peat layers were related to an uncultured planctomycete group. Pyrosequencing-based analysis identified Planctomycetes as the major bacterial group at the oxic/anoxic interface at the Obukhovskoye peat (54% of total 16S rRNA gene sequence reads), followed by Acidobacteria (19% reads), while in the Saxnäs Mosse peat, Acidobacteria were dominant (46%), and Planctomycetes contributed to 6% of the total reads. The detection of abundant TMO lipids in planctomycetes isolated from peat bogs and the lack of TMO production by cultures of acidobacteria suggest that planctomycetes are the producers of TMOs in peat bogs. The higher accumulation of TMOs at the oxic/anoxic interface and the change in the planctomycete community with depth suggest that these IPLs could be synthesized as a response to changing redox conditions at the oxic/anoxic interface.
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Understanding the origin of ecosystems and their changes through time is important. Two mutually contrasting types of grasslands existed in the Arctic: dry- and cold-adapted grasslands of the Pleistocene dominated by Poaceae species, and presently dominating graminoid grasslands composed of sedges and rushes. We studied the taxon recruitment of the Arctic flora for Carex, the most species-rich and widespread genus of the Arctic. In this study we explore the possible geographical and altitudinal origins of the species, their ecological provenance in terms of soil moisture and light requirements, and salt tolerance.
We addressed these questions in a phylogenetic context using the latest megaphylogeny of Carex comprising almost all Arctic species and about half of the genus' total species diversity. Ecological data were extracted from the literature and analyzed for each clade comprising Arctic species.
Arctic Carex species were observed in 48 independent lineages. Almost all areas north of the meridional zone of the Northern Hemisphere may have served as sources of Arctic lineages. Source areas are unrelated to the distribution within the Arctic. Arctic species evolved in lowland and high mountain clades; mostly in wet, rarely in dry adapted clades that occur principally in open conditions. Salt tolerant Arctic species occur in five clades.
Many independent lineages of different geographical areas and ecological backgrounds provided species for the northernmost ecosystem; clear main sources were not discernible. Carex shows the whole dynamic of ecosystem assembly from a seemingly simple immigration of preadapted species, evolution in geographical distant areas, to species radiations in the North.
The Yanqi Basin, one of the most productive agricultural areas, has a high population density in Xinjiang, Northwest China. Land use changes, mainly driven by oasis expansion, significantly impact ecosystem services and functions, but these effects are difficult to quantify. The valuation of ecosystem services is important to clarify the ecological and environmental changes caused by agriculturalization of oasis. This study aimed to investigate variations in ecosystem services in response to land use changes during oasis agricultural expansion activities in the Yanqi Basin from 1964 to 2009. The methods used were based on formula of ecosystem service value (ESV) and ESV coefficients. Satellite data were combined with the ESV coefficients to quantify land use changes and ecosystem service changes in the study area. Sensitivity analysis determined the effect of manipulating the coefficients on the estimated values. The results show that the total ESVs in the Yanqi Basin were $1,674, $1,692, $1,471, $1,732, and $1,603 million in 1964, 1973, 1989, 1999, and 2009, respectively. The net deline in ESV was $71 million in the past 46 years, but the ESVs of each types of landscape changed significantly. The aggregated ESVs of water areas and wetlands were approximately 80 % of the total ESV. Water supply and waste treatment were the two largest service functions and contributed approximately 65 % of the total ESV. The estimated ESVs in this study were elastic with respect to the value coefficients. Therefore, the estimations were robust in spite of uncertainties on the value coefficients. These significant changes in land use occur within the entire basin over the study period. These changes cause environmental problems, such as land degradation, vegetation degeneracy, and changes in aquatic environment.
We assessed the blue mussel Mytilus edulis fishery management scheme introduced in 1994 in the Danish Wadden Sea that regulate fishing vessels, fishery quota, set-aside for mussel-eating birds and established zones closed to mussel fishery. The results showed (i) a reduction in the blue mussel biomass and mussel bed areas in zones closed to fishery, (ii) decrease in eiders Somateria mollissima numbers and increase or stable numbers for oystercatcher Haematopus ostralegus and herring gull Larus argentatus and (iii) that energy estimations based on ecological food requirements for the mussel-eating birds should be at least three times larger, than the amount set-aside in the mussel management scheme. It is concluded that the mussel management scheme had been unable to stabilize or increase the blue mussel stocks and to secure stable or increasing numbers for all target bird species. Thus, it is recommended to revise the present blue mussel management scheme in the Danish Wadden Sea, to continue and improve mussel stock and bird surveys, and to consider novel studies of the mussel-eating birds' energetics for improved set-aside estimates and future assessments.
Starting from 2009, monitoring studies of swamp regimes have been conducted at the swampland station located in the north-eastern Altai. Here, we present the results of biological activity (indices of microorganisms abundance, respirometric indicator, catalase activity) in peat deposits of eutrophic (Turochak) and mesotrophic (Kutyushskoye) swamps during 2012-2013 vegetation periods with different levels of marsh water and oxidation-reduction conditions.
Chlamydia psittaci in birds may be transmitted to humans and cause respiratory infections, sometimes as severe disease. Our study investigated the C. psittaci prevalence in migratory birds in Sweden by real-time PCR. Fecal specimens or cloacal swabs were collected from 497 birds from 22 different species, mainly mallards (Anas platyrhynchos), at two bird observatories in Sweden. DNA from C psittaci was found in six (1.2%) birds from three different species. Five of the positive specimens were infected with four novel strains of C. psittaci, based on sequencing of partial 16S rRNA gene and ompA gene, and the sixth was indentified as a recently described Chlamydiaceae-like bacterium. Considering exposure to humans it is concluded that the risk of zoonotic infection is low.
This study presents descriptive statistics and community analysis of adult biting midges trapped at 16 livestock farms by means of light traps on Zealand and Lolland-Falster, Denmark. A total of 9,047 male and female Culicoides divided into 24 species, were caught. Biotic and abiotic factors ranging from presence of different host species (cattle or sheep/goats), presence of small woody areas or wetlands in the surrounding landscape, and agricultural practice (organic or conventional) were included in the community analysis. Only differences in the Culicoides communities between conventional and organic practices were tested significantly different. Total numbers of Culicoides individuals were higher on the organic farms than on the conventional farms. The larger loads of biting midges on the organic farms may be due to free-ranging animals that attracted the midges on pastures and carried them to the stable environment (the cattle of the conventional farms were held inside the stables). Presence of deciduous trees within 500 m of the farms resulted in higher numbers of Culicoides obsoletus s.s., while presence of wetlands increased the numbers of Culicoides punctatus and Culicoides pulicaris. Furthermore, Culicoides riethi and Culicoides puncticollis (subgenus Monoculicoides) were recorded in high numbers on individual farms. C. puncticollis was found for the first time in Denmark and so far only recorded from Zealand.
Studies on mosquito species diversity in Europe often focus on a specific habitat, region or country. Moreover, different trap types are used for these sampling studies, making it difficult to compare and validate results across Europe. To facilitate comparisons of trapping sites and community analysis, the present study used two trap types for monitoring mosquito species diversity in three habitat types for three different countries in Europe.
Mosquitoes were trapped using Biogents Sentinel (BGS), and Mosquito Magnet Liberty Plus (MMLP) traps at a total of 27 locations in Sweden, the Netherlands and Italy, comprising farm, peri-urban and wetland habitats. From July 2014 to June 2015 all locations were sampled monthly, except for the winter months. Indices of species richness, evenness and diversity were calculated, and community analyses were carried out with non-metric multidimensional scaling (NMDS) techniques.
A total of 11,745 female mosquitoes were trapped during 887 collections. More than 90% of the mosquitoes belonged to the genera Culex and Aedes, with Culex pipiens being the most abundant species. The highest mosquito diversity was found in Sweden. Within Sweden, species diversity was highest in wetland habitats, whereas in the Netherlands and Italy this was highest at farms. The NMDS analyses showed clear differences in mosquito communities among countries, but not among habitat types. The MMLP trapped a higher diversity of mosquito species than the BGS traps. Also, MMLP traps trapped higher numbers of mosquitoes, except for the genera Culex and Culiseta in Italy.
A core mosquito community could be identified for the three countries, with Culex pipiens as the most abundant species. Differences in mosquito species communities were more defined by the three countries included in the study than by the three habitat types. Differences in mosquito community composition across countries may have implications for disease emergence and further spread throughout Europe. Future research should, therefore, focus on how field data of vector communities can be incorporated into models, to better assess the risk of mosquito-borne disease outbreaks.
Cites: Med Vet Entomol. 2009 Dec;23(4):448-51 PMID 19941611
We isolated 50 strains of free-living ultrasmall bacteria with a cell volume that varies from 0.02 to 1.3 microm3 from a range of extremal natural biotopes, namely permafrost soils, oil slime, soils, lake silt, thermal swamp moss, and the skin integuments of the clawed frog, Xenopus laevis. Of them, 15 isolates, characterized by a cell size of less than 0.1 microm3 and a genome size from 1.5 to 2.4 Mb, were subsumed to ultramicrobacteria belonging to different philogenetic groups (Alphaproteobacteria, Bacteroidetes, Actinobacteria) and genera (Kaistia, Chryseobacterium, Microbacterium, Leucobacter, Leifsonia, and Agrococcus) of the Bacteria domain. They are free-living mesophilic heterotrophic aerobic bacteria. The representatives of Kaistia and Chryseobacterium genera were capable of facultative parasitism on other species of chemo-organotrophic bacteria and cyanobacteria. The ultramicrobacteria differed in their morpholgy, cell ultrastructural organization, and physiological and biochemical features. According to the fine structure of their cell walls, the isolates were subdivided into two groups, namely Gram-positive and Gram-negative forms.