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Fear and environmental stressors may negatively affect the welfare of farm animals such as pigs. The present study investigated the effects of music and positive handling on reproductive performance of sows (n = 1014; parity 1 to 8) from a commercial pig farm practicing a batch farrowing system. Every 2 weeks, 56 sows were moved from the gestation unit to conventional-crated farrowing houses 1 week prior to expected farrowing. Treated (T; n = 299) and control (C; n = 715) sows were included in the study. In the farrowing houses, auditory enrichment (music from a radio) was provided to sows of T groups daily from 0600 to 1800 h until the end of lactation. Until the day of farrowing, T sows were additionally subjected, for 15 s per day per sow, to continuous back scratching by one member of farm staff. Litter performance and piglet mortality were recorded and analysed between T and C sows using linear mixed regression models. The number of liveborn piglets (C 13.85 v. T 13.26) and liveborn corrected for fostering (C 13.85 v. T 13.43) was significantly higher (P < 0.05) in C groups compared to the T groups. The number of stillborn piglets was 0.60 and 0.72 in T and C groups, respectively (P > 0.05). With regard to piglet mortality, a linear mixed regression model showed a significant overall effect of treatment in reducing piglet mortality (P < 0.01). Yet, the effect of treatment varied according to litter size (number of liveborn piglets) with a diminishing treatment effect in sows with a high litter size (P < 0.01). Pre-weaning survival was improved in the current study by the combined effect of daily back scratching of sows prior to farrowing and providing music to sows and piglets during lactation. Further research is needed to assess the separate effects of both interventions.
The Murchison Widefield Array (MWA) is an open access telescope dedicated to studying the low-frequency (80–300 MHz) southern sky. Since beginning operations in mid-2013, the MWA has opened a new observational window in the southern hemisphere enabling many science areas. The driving science objectives of the original design were to observe 21 cm radiation from the Epoch of Reionisation (EoR), explore the radio time domain, perform Galactic and extragalactic surveys, and monitor solar, heliospheric, and ionospheric phenomena. All together
programs recorded 20 000 h producing 146 papers to date. In 2016, the telescope underwent a major upgrade resulting in alternating compact and extended configurations. Other upgrades, including digital back-ends and a rapid-response triggering system, have been developed since the original array was commissioned. In this paper, we review the major results from the prior operation of the MWA and then discuss the new science paths enabled by the improved capabilities. We group these science opportunities by the four original science themes but also include ideas for directions outside these categories.
Species distribution models (SDMs) are statistical tools used to develop continuous predictions of species occurrence. ‘Integrated SDMs’ (ISDMs) are an elaboration of this approach with potential advantages that allow for the dual use of opportunistically collected presence-only data and site-occupancy data from planned surveys. These models also account for survey bias and imperfect detection through the use of a hierarchical modelling framework that separately estimates the species–environment response and detection process. This is particularly helpful for conservation applications and predictions for rare species, where data are often limited and prediction errors may have significant management consequences. Despite this potential importance, ISDMs remain largely untested under a variety of scenarios. We performed an exploration of key modelling decisions and assumptions on an ISDM using the endangered Baird’s tapir (Tapirus bairdii) as a test species. We found that site area had the strongest effect on the magnitude of population estimates and underlying intensity surface and was driven by estimates of model intercepts. Selecting a site area that accounted for the individual movements of the species within an average home range led to population estimates that coincided with expert estimates. ISDMs that do not account for the individual movements of species will likely lead to less accurate estimates of species intensity (number of individuals per unit area) and thus overall population estimates. This bias could be severe and highly detrimental to conservation actions if uninformed ISDMs are used to estimate global populations of threatened and data-deficient species, particularly those that lack natural history and movement information. However, the ISDM was consistently the most accurate model compared to other approaches, which demonstrates the importance of this new modelling framework and the ability to combine opportunistic data with systematic survey data. Thus, we recommend researchers use ISDMs with conservative movement information when estimating population sizes of rare and data-deficient species. ISDMs could be improved by using a similar parameterization to spatial capture–recapture models that explicitly incorporate animal movement as a model parameter, which would further remove the need for spatial subsampling prior to implementation.
A constraint on Solar System formation is the high 26Al/27Al abundance ratio, 17 times higher than the average Galactic ratio, while the 60Fe/56Fe value was lower than the Galactic value. This challenges the assumption that a nearby supernova was responsible for the injection of these short-lived radionuclides into the early Solar System. We suggest that the Solar System was formed by triggered star formation at the edge of a Wolf-Rayet (W-R) bubble. We discuss the details of various processes within the model using numerical simulations, and analytic and semi-analytic calculations, and conclude that it is a viable model that can explain the initial abundances of 26Al and 60Fe. We estimate that 1%-16% of all Sun-like stars could have formed in such a setting.
In this study, we report on the mechanical cleavage of conductive metal-based aluminum diboride (AlB2) flakes. The cleavage resulted in a highly single crystalline 2D material and had an atomically flat and smooth surface as shown by atomic force microscopy (AFM) and secondary ion mass spectrometry. Nanoindentation and AFM imaging of freshly cleaved specimens revealed sub-nm roughness and 30% improvement in the nanomechanical properties as compared to the as-grown AlB2 flakes. Once exposed to ambient air, the cleaved AlB2 flakes formed a superficial oxidation layer of less than 1 nm thickness within 5 min. Owing to the smooth surface, ultra-thin and stable oxide layer, and the excellent mechanical and electrical characteristics of AlB2, the cleaved flakes present an ideal 2D material for emerging applications in microfabrication such as the growth of epitaxial thin films. To prove the sub-nm surface characteristics of cleaved AlB2, a 10-nm thick TiO2 film was deposited on a freshly cleaved AlB2 using atomic layer deposition. Surface roughness and compositional consistency of this film were compared with a control sample deposited on Si. The TiO2 film on AlB2 showed a distinct thin interface layer with fewer defects than TiO2 on Si and superior flatness.
Characterization of three vendor’s bulk semi-insulating GaN:Fe wafers, grown by either hydride vapor phase epitaxy or the ammonothermal method, was performed using: scanning electron microscopy, secondary ion mass spectroscopy, high resolution X-ray diffraction, cathodoluminescence, photoluminescence, and high voltage testing. Although the Fe doping level is significantly different for each growth method, both are promising for the fabrication of PCSS devices operating in the lock-on mode.
Throughout its range in Latin America the jaguar Panthera onca is threatened by habitat loss and fragmentation, and conflict with humans. Protected areas in Panama harbour some of the last remaining suitable habitat for jaguars and are vital to conservation. However, no previous studies had assessed which factors in particular affect the tolerance of rural Panamanians towards jaguars and National Park conservation, which is important to jaguar persistence. Whether these factors are consistent with previous research on human–carnivore coexistence is unclear. To address this we estimated the number of instances of depredation of cattle by jaguars, and assessed attitudes and perceptions of rural Panamanians. We conducted semi-structured interviews in two disparate study areas: Cerro Hoya National Park and Darién National Park. Depredation events were more frequent in the latter, but only residents of the former reported conflict between people and coyotes Canis latrans. Positive perceptions of jaguars and National Parks, and criticism of park management, increased with level of education and land ownership. Men were more open to receiving help on their farms to mitigate impacts of jaguars, and more tolerant of the presence of jaguars, than women. Residents from both study areas indicated high appreciation for their respective National Parks. We provide recommendations to improve community outreach and education initiatives, and suggest priority areas for future mitigation efforts concerning human–jaguar interactions in Panama.
Electron-beam (e-beam) irradiation damage is often regarded as a severe limitation to atomic-scale study of two-dimensional (2D) materials using electron microscopy techniques. However, energy transferred from the e-beam can also provide a way to modify 2D materials via defect engineering when the interaction of the beam with the sample is precisely controlled. In this article, we discuss the atomic geometry, formation mechanism, and properties of several types of structural defects, ranging from zero-dimensional point defects to extended domains, induced by an e-beam in a few representative 2D materials, including graphene, hexagonal boron nitride, transition-metal dichalcogenides, and phosphorene. We show that atomic as well as line defects and even novel nanostructures can be created and manipulated in 2D materials by an e-beam in a controllable manner. Phase transitions can also be induced. The e-beam in a (scanning) transmission electron microscope not only resolves the intrinsic atomic structure of materials with defects, but also provides new opportunities to modify the structure with subnanometer precision.
Background: The degree of overlap between schizophrenia (SCZ) and affective psychosis (AFF) has been a recurring question since Kraepelin’s subdivision of the major psychoses. Studying nonpsychotic relatives allows a comparison of disorder-associated phenotypes, without potential confounds that can obscure distinctive features of the disorder. Because attention and working memory have been proposed as potential endophenotypes for SCZ and AFF, we compared these cognitive features in individuals at familial high-risk (FHR) for the disorders. Methods: Young, unmedicated, first-degree relatives (ages, 13–25 years) at FHR-SCZ (n=41) and FHR-AFF (n=24) and community controls (CCs, n=54) were tested using attention and working memory versions of the Auditory Continuous Performance Test. To determine if schizotypal traits or current psychopathology accounted for cognitive deficits, we evaluated psychosis proneness using three Chapman Scales, Revised Physical Anhedonia, Perceptual Aberration, and Magical Ideation, and assessed psychopathology using the Hopkins Symptom Checklist -90 Revised. Results: Compared to controls, the FHR-AFF sample was significantly impaired in auditory vigilance, while the FHR-SCZ sample was significantly worse in working memory. Both FHR groups showed significantly higher levels of physical anhedonia and some psychopathological dimensions than controls. Adjusting for physical anhedonia, phobic anxiety, depression, psychoticism, and obsessive-compulsive symptoms eliminated the FHR-AFF vigilance effects but not the working memory deficits in FHR-SCZ. Conclusions: The working memory deficit in FHR-SZ was the more robust of the cognitive impairments after accounting for psychopathological confounds and is supported as an endophenotype. Examination of larger samples of people at familial risk for different psychoses remains necessary to confirm these findings and to clarify the role of vigilance in FHR-AFF. (JINS, 2016, 22, 1026–1037)
A species in the Bactrocera dorsalis (Hendel) complex was detected in Kenya during 2003 and classified as Bactrocera invadens Drew, Tsuruta & White. Having spread rapidly throughout Africa, it threatens agriculture due to crop damage and loss of market access. In a recent revision of the B. dorsalis complex, B. invadens was incorporated into the species B. dorsalis. The potential distribution of B. dorsalis has been previously modelled. However, previous models were based on presence data and did not incorporate information on the seasonal phenology of B. dorsalis, nor on the possible influence that irrigation may have on its distribution. Methyl eugenol-baited traps were used to collect B. dorsalis in Africa. Seasonal phenology data, measured as fly abundance throughout the year, was related to each location's climate to infer climatic growth response parameters. These functions were used along with African distribution records and development studies to fit the niche model for B. dorsalis, using independent global distribution records outside Africa for model validation. Areas at greatest risk of invasion by B. dorsalis are South and Central America, Mexico, southernmost USA, parts of the Mediterranean coast, parts of Southern and Eastern Australia and New Zealand's North Island. Under irrigation, most of Africa and Australia appear climatically suitable.
It is well known that web-based interventions can be effective treatments for depression. However, dropout rates in web-based interventions are typically high, especially in self-guided web-based interventions. Rigorous empirical evidence regarding factors influencing dropout in self-guided web-based interventions is lacking due to small study sample sizes. In this paper we examined predictors of dropout in an individual patient data meta-analysis to gain a better understanding of who may benefit from these interventions.
A comprehensive literature search for all randomized controlled trials (RCTs) of psychotherapy for adults with depression from 2006 to January 2013 was conducted. Next, we approached authors to collect the primary data of the selected studies. Predictors of dropout, such as socio-demographic, clinical, and intervention characteristics were examined.
Data from 2705 participants across ten RCTs of self-guided web-based interventions for depression were analysed. The multivariate analysis indicated that male gender [relative risk (RR) 1.08], lower educational level (primary education, RR 1.26) and co-morbid anxiety symptoms (RR 1.18) significantly increased the risk of dropping out, while for every additional 4 years of age, the risk of dropping out significantly decreased (RR 0.94).
Dropout can be predicted by several variables and is not randomly distributed. This knowledge may inform tailoring of online self-help interventions to prevent dropout in identified groups at risk.
We investigated an outbreak of 396 Salmonella enterica serotype I 4,5,12:i:- infections to determine the source. After 7 weeks of extensive hypothesis-generation interviews, no refined hypothesis was formed. Nevertheless, a case-control study was initiated. Subsequently, an iterative hypothesis-generation approach used by a single interviewing team identified brand A not-ready-to-eat frozen pot pies as a likely vehicle. The case-control study, modified to assess this new hypothesis, along with product testing indicated that the turkey variety of pot pies was responsible. Review of product labels identified inconsistent language regarding preparation, and the cooking instructions included undefined microwave wattage categories. Surveys found that most patients did not follow the product's cooking instructions and did not know their oven's wattage. The manufacturer voluntarily recalled pot pies and improved the product's cooking instructions. This investigation highlights the value of careful hypothesis-generation and the risks posed by frozen not-ready-to-eat microwavable foods.