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Over the last 25 years, the harbour porpoise (Phocoena phocoena) has made a significant return to the Southern Bight of the North Sea and the English Channel due to a shift in distribution from northerly regions. Although the ecological drivers of this return are unclear, this species faces multiple threats in the region, including by-catch and habitat degradation. Ferry-based surveys were conducted year-round between November 2011 and June 2014 to assess the influence of environmental parameters upon the spatiotemporal distribution and relative abundance of harbour porpoises in the Southern Bight of the North Sea. A total of 1450 sightings of harbour porpoises were recorded during the 100 round-trip surveys carried out between Dunkirk (France) and Dover (England). Inter-annual and monthly variations in group size were observed, with largest groups recorded in 2014 (mean = 2.02) and in January (mean = 2.32). The relative abundance showed significant seasonal variation, with peaks recorded during winter months. An inter-annual increasing relative abundance was recorded during the study period. There was a seasonally dependent association with environmental variables, particularly depth, seabed roughness and current speed. Finally, predictions suggest large increases of the relative abundance in offshore habitats during winter months and over the study period.
Exotic annual grasses such as medusahead [Taeniatherum caput-medusae (L.) Nevski] and downy brome (Bromus tectorum L.) dominate millions of hectares of grasslands in the western United States. Applying picloram, aminopyralid, and other growth regulator herbicides at late growth stages reduces seed production of most exotic annual grasses. In this study, we applied aminopyralid to T. caput-medusae to determine how reducing seed production in the current growing season influenced cover in the subsequent growing season. At eight annual grassland sites, we applied aminopyralid at 55, 123, and 245 g ae ha−1 in spring just before T. caput-medusae heading. The two higher rates were also applied pre-emergence (PRE) in fall to allow comparisons with this previously tested timing. When applied in spring during the roughly 10-d period between the flag leaf and inflorescence first becoming visible, just 55 g ae ha−1 of aminopyralid greatly limited seed production and subsequently reduced T. caput-medusae cover to nearly zero. Fall aminopyralid applications were less effective against T. caput-medusae, even at a rate of 245 g ae ha−1. The growing season of application, fall treatments, but not spring treatments, sometimes reduced cover of desirable winter annual forage grasses. The growing season after application, both spring and fall treatments tended to increase forage grasses, though spring treatments generally caused larger increases. Compared with other herbicide treatment options, preheading aminopyralid treatments are a relatively inexpensive, effective approach for controlling T. caput-medusae and increasing forage production.
Ancient history begins and ends with the ancient evidence. The evidence represents not only the foundation of the discipline, but the material out of which any argument must be built, and it is not possible to go further than it allows. This is part of the reason why the nature and value of the evidence for early Rome have long been, and remain, matters of considerable and sometimes contentious debate. The best evidence, simply because it is contemporary, is arguably the archaeological, but the sorts of questions that archaeological evidence can answer are often of little help when it comes to matters such as the politics and political structures of early Rome, which are the focus of this collection. For such matters, it is still necessary to work with the literary evidence. However, since the historical value of the literary evidence is so hotly contested, the uses to which that evidence is put and the conclusions that are drawn from it inevitably vary considerably. Despite more than a century of research, there is still nothing even remotely resembling a consensus on how the literary sources should best be handled. This paper explores some of the problems with the evidence for early Rome, considers something of the limits and uses of that evidence, as well as introduces the contributions that make up this collection of studies on power and politics in early Rome.
While the general absence of Rome’s nobility from the traditions of the regal period has often been noted, the nobility’s prompt appearance at the beginning of the republican period has elicited little comment. This paper argues that the nobility’s appearance is more significant than its earlier absence, precisely on account of its very promptness and also because the nobility appears primarily with the consulship. Given the special importance that the consulship later came to have, following the emergence of Rome’s office-holding nobility, these circumstances inevitably raise questions about the value of the early consular fasti, and indeed even about the whole premise on which the early fasti are based, namely that the consulship was established immediately after the expulsion of the kings. It is argued here that this premise is anachronistic, and that the early consular fasti are unreliable and often tendentious; it is further argued that this premise is also responsible for some of the confusion surrounding the mysterious consular tribunate. The consular tribunate was a magistracy about which ancient writers quite clearly knew very little, and their ignorance and the inconsistencies in what they had to say about the tribunate inevitably undermine their claim to possess better and more detailed information about earlier times.
Survey experiments have become a central methodology across the social sciences. Researchers can combine experiments’ causal power with the generalizability of population-based samples. Yet, due to the expense of population-based samples, much research relies on convenience samples (e.g. students, online opt-in samples). The emergence of affordable, but non-representative online samples has reinvigorated debates about the external validity of experiments. We conduct two studies of how experimental treatment effects obtained from convenience samples compare to effects produced by population samples. In Study 1, we compare effect estimates from four different types of convenience samples and a population-based sample. In Study 2, we analyze treatment effects obtained from 20 experiments implemented on a population-based sample and Amazon's Mechanical Turk (MTurk). The results reveal considerable similarity between many treatment effects obtained from convenience and nationally representative population-based samples. While the results thus bolster confidence in the utility of convenience samples, we conclude with guidance for the use of a multitude of samples for advancing scientific knowledge.
The Bovine Respiratory Disease Coordinated Agricultural Project (BRD CAP) is a 5-year project funded by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), with an overriding objective to use the tools of modern genomics to identify cattle that are less susceptible to BRD. To do this, two large genome wide association studies (GWAS) were conducted using a case:control design on preweaned Holstein dairy heifers and beef feedlot cattle. A health scoring system was used to identify BRD cases and controls. Heritability estimates for BRD susceptibility ranged from 19 to 21% in dairy calves to 29.2% in beef cattle when using numerical scores as a semi-quantitative definition of BRD. A GWAS analysis conducted on the dairy calf data showed that single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) effects explained 20% of the variation in BRD incidence and 17–20% of the variation in clinical signs. These results represent a preliminary analysis of ongoing work to identify loci associated with BRD. Future work includes validation of the chromosomal regions and SNPs that have been identified as important for BRD susceptibility, fine mapping of chromosomes to identify causal SNPs, and integration of predictive markers for BRD susceptibility into genetic tests and national cattle genetic evaluations.
The reauthorization of the Pandemic and All-Hazards Preparedness Act in 2013 incorporated the dental profession and dental professionals into the federal legislation governing public health response to pandemics and all-hazard situations. Work is now necessary to expand the processes needed to incorporate and train oral health care professionals into pandemic and all-hazard response events.
A just-in-time (JIT) training exercise and immunization drill using an ex vivo porcine model system was conducted to demonstrate the rapidity to which dental professionals can respond to a pandemic influenza scenario. Medical history documentation, vaccination procedures, and patient throughput and error rates of 15 dental responders were evaluated by trained nursing staff and emergency response personnel.
The average throughput (22.33/hr) and medical error rates (7 of 335; 2.08%) of the dental responders were similar to those found in analogous influenza mass vaccination clinics previously conducted using certified public health nurses.
The dental responder immunization drill validated the capacity and capability of dental professionals to function as a valuable immunization resource. The ex vivo porcine model system used for JIT training can serve as a simple and inexpensive training tool to update pandemic responders’ immunization techniques and procedures supporting inoculation protocols.
Early research on the Taylor rule typically divided the data exogenously into pre-Volcker and Volcker–Greenspan subsamples. We contribute to the recent trend of endogenizing changes in monetary policy by estimating a real-time forward-looking Taylor rule with endogenous Markov switching coefficients and variance. The response of the interest rate to inflation is regime-dependent, with the pre- and post-Volcker samples containing monetary regimes where the Fed did and did not follow the Taylor principle. Although the Fed consistently adhered to the Taylor principle before 1973 and after 1984, it followed the Taylor principle from 1975 to 1979 and did not follow the Taylor principle from 1980 to 1984. We also find that the Fed only responded to real economic activity during the states in which the Taylor principle held. Our results are consistent with the idea that exogenously dividing postwar monetary policy into pre- and post-Volcker samples is misleading. The greatest qualitative difference between our results and recent research employing time-varying parameters is that we find that the Fed did not adhere to the Taylor principle during most of Paul Volcker's tenure, a finding that accords with the historical record of monetary policy.
The miconia (Miconia calvescens) invasion of the East Maui Watershed (EMW) started from a single introduction over 40 yr ago, establishing a nascent patch network spread across 20,000 ha. In 2012, an accelerated intervention strategy was implemented utilizing the Herbicide Ballistic Technology (HBT) platform in a Hughes 500D helicopter to reduce target densities of seven nascent patches in the EMW. In a 14-mo period, a total of 48 interventions eliminated 4,029 miconia targets, with an estimated 33% increase in operations and 168% increase in recorded targets relative to the adjusted means from 2005 to 2011 data (prior to HBT adoption). This sequence of interventions covered a total net area of 1,138 ha, creating a field mosaic of overlapping search coverage (saturation) for each patch (four to eight interventions per patch). Target density reduction for each patch fit exponential decay functions (R2 > 0.88, P < 0.05), with a majority of the target interventions spatially assigned to the highest saturation fields. The progressive decay in target density led to concomitant reductions in search efficiency (min ha−1) and herbicide use rate (grams ae ha−1) in subsequent interventions. Mean detection efficacy (± SE) between overlapping interventions (n = 41) was 0.62 ± 0.03, matching closely with the probability of detection for a random search operation and verifying imperfect (albeit precise) detection. The HBT platform increases the value of aerial surveillance operations with 98% efficacy in target elimination. Applying coverage saturation with an accelerated intervention schedule to known patch locations is an adaptive process for compensating imperfect detection and building intelligence with spatial and temporal relevance to the next operation.
Miconia (Miconia calvescens DC.) is a tropical tree species from South and Central America that is a highly invasive colonizer of Hawaii's forested watersheds. Elimination of satellite populations is critical to an effective containment strategy, but extreme topography limits accessibility to remote populations by helicopter operations only. Herbicide Ballistic Technology (HBT) is a novel weed control tool designed to pneumatically deliver encapsulated herbicide projectiles. It is capable of accurately treating miconia satellites within a 30 m range in either horizontal or vertical trajectories. Efficacy was examined for the encapsulated herbicide projectiles, each containing 199.4 mg ae triclopyr, when applied to miconia in 5-unit increments. Experimental calibrations of the HBT platform were recorded on a Hughes 500-D helicopter while conducting surveillance operations from November 2010 through October 2011 on the islands of Maui and Kauai. Search efficiency (min ha−1; n = 13, R2 = 0.933, P< 0.001) and target acquisition rate (plants hr−1, n = 13, R2 = 0.926, P< 0.001) displayed positive linear and logarithmic relationships, respectively, to plant target density. The search efficiency equation estimated target acquisition time at 25.1 sec and a minimum surveillance rate of 67.8 s ha−1 when no targets were detected. The maximum target acquisition rate for the HBT platform was estimated at 143 targets hr−1. An average mortality factor of 0.542 was derived from the product of detection efficacy (0.560) and operational treatment efficacy (0.972) in overlapping buffer areas generated from repeated flight segments (n = 5). This population reduction value was used in simulation models to estimate the expected costs for one- and multi-year satellite population control strategies for qualifying options in cost optimization and risk aversion. This is a first report on the performance of an HBT helicopter platform demonstrating the capability for immediate, rapid-response control of new satellite plant detections, while conducting aerial surveillance of incipient miconia populations.
Rangeland health assessment provides qualitative information on ecosystem attributes. Successional management is a conceptual framework that allows managers to link information gathered in rangeland health assessment to ecological processes that need to be repaired to allow vegetation to change in a favorable direction. The objective of this paper is to detail how these two endeavors can be integrated to form a holistic vegetation management framework. The Rangeland Health Assessment procedures described by Pyke et al. (2002) and Pellant et al. (2005) currently are being adopted by land managers across the western United States. Seventeen standard indicators were selected to represent various ecological aspects of ecosystem health. Each of the indicators is rated from extreme to no (slight) departure from the Ecological Site Description and/or the Reference Area(s). Successional management identifies three general drivers of plant community change: site availability, species availability, and species performance, as well as specific ecological processes influencing these drivers. In this paper, we propose and provide examples of a method to link the information collected in rangeland health assessment to the successional management framework. Thus, this method not only allows managers to quantify a point-in-time indication of rangeland health but also allows managers to use this information to decide how various management options might influence vegetation trajectories. We argue that integrating the Rangeland Health Assessment with Successional Management enhances the usefulness of both systems and provides synergistic value to the decision-making process.
Land managers have long identified a critical need for a practical and effective framework for designing restoration strategies, especially where invasive plants dominate. A holistic, ecologically based, invasive plant management (EBIPM) framework that integrates ecosystem health assessment, knowledge of ecological processes, and adaptive management into a successional management model has recently been proposed. However, well-defined principles that link ecological processes that need to be repaired to tools and strategies available to managers have been slow to emerge, thus greatly limiting the ability of managers to easily apply EBIPM across a range of restoration scenarios. The broad objective of this article is to synthesize current knowledge of the mechanisms and processes that drive plant community succession into ecological principles for EBIPM. Using the core concepts of successional management that identify site availability, species availability, and species performance as three general drivers of plant community change, we detail key principles that link management tools used in EBIPM to the ecological processes predicted to influence the three general causes of succession. Although we acknowledge that identification of principles in ecology has greatly lagged behind other fields and recognize that identification of ecological principles and the conditions in which they hold are still being developed, we demonstrate how current knowledge and future advances can be used to structure a holistic EBIPM framework that can be applied across a range of restoration scenarios.