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A chloroacetamide herbicide by application timing factorial experiment was conducted in 2017 and 2018 in Mississippi to investigate chloroacetamide use in a dicamba-based Palmer amaranth management program in cotton production. Herbicides used were S-metolachlor or acetochlor, and application timings were preemergence, preemergence followed by (fb) early postemergence, preemergence fb late postemergence, early postemergence alone, late postemergence alone, and early postemergence fb late postemergence. Dicamba was included in all preemergence applications, and dicamba plus glyphosate was included with all postemergence applications. Differences in cotton and weed response due to chloroacetamide type were minimal, and cotton injury at 14 d after late postemergence application was less than 10% for all application timings. Late-season weed control was reduced up to 30% and 53% if chloroacetamide application occurred preemergence or late postemergence only, respectively. Late-season weed densities were minimized if multiple applications were used instead of a single application. Cotton height was reduced by up to 23% if a single application was made late postemergence relative to other application timings. Chloroacetamide application at any timing except preemergence alone minimized late-season weed biomass. Yield was maximized by any treatment involving multiple applications or early postemergence alone, whereas applications preemergence or late postemergence alone resulted in up to 56% and 27% yield losses, respectively. While no yield loss was reported by delaying the first of sequential applications until early postemergence, forgoing a preemergence application is not advisable given the multiple factors that may delay timely postemergence applications such as inclement weather.
Surface albedo typically dominates the mass balance of mountain glaciers, though long-term trends and patterns of glacier albedo are seldom explored. We calculated broadband shortwave albedo for glaciers in the central Chilean Andes (33–34°S) using end-of-summer Landsat scenes between 1986 and 2020. We found a high inter-annual variability of glacier-wide albedo that is largely a function of the glacier fractional snow-covered area and the total precipitation of the preceding hydrological year (up to 69% of the inter-annual variance explained). Under the 2010–2020 ‘Mega Drought’ period, the mean albedo, regionally averaged ranging from ~0.25–0.5, decreased by −0.05 on average relative to 1986–2009, with the greatest reduction occurring 3500–5000 m a.s.l. In 2020, differences relative to 1986–2009 were −0.14 on average as a result of near-complete absence of late summer snow cover and the driest hydrological year since the Landsat observation period began (~90% reduction of annual precipitation relative to the 1986–2009 period). We found statistically significant, negative trends in glacier ice albedo of up to −0.03 per decade, a trend that would have serious implications for the future water security of the region, because glacier ice melt acts to buffer streamflow shortages under severe drought conditions.
We all now know that the novel coronavirus is anything but a common cold. The pandemic has created many new obligations for all of us, several of which come with serious costs to our quality of life. But in some cases, the guidance and the law are open to a degree of interpretation, leaving us to decide what is the ethical (or unethical but desired) course of action. Because of the high cost of some of the obligations, a conflict of interest can arise between what we want to do and what it is right to do. And so, some people choose to respect only the letter of the law, but not the spirit, or not to respect even the spirit of the guidelines. This paper identifies and describes the new obligations imposed on us all by the pandemic, considers their costs in terms of the good life, and provides an ethical analysis of two personal and two public cases in terms of the letter and spirit of the guidance and legislation.
Systematic reviews and meta-analyses suggest that behaviour change interventions have modest effect sizes, struggle to demonstrate effect in the long term and that there is high heterogeneity between studies. Such interventions take huge effort to design and run for relatively small returns in terms of changes to behaviour.
So why do behaviour change interventions not work and how can we make them more effective? This article offers some ideas about what may underpin the failure of behaviour change interventions. We propose three main reasons that may explain why our current methods of conducting behaviour change interventions struggle to achieve the changes we expect: 1) our current model for testing the efficacy or effectiveness of interventions tends to a mean effect size. This ignores individual differences in response to interventions; 2) our interventions tend to assume that everyone values health in the way we do as health professionals; and 3) the great majority of our interventions focus on addressing cognitions as mechanisms of change. We appeal to people’s logic and rationality rather than recognising that much of what we do and how we behave, including our health behaviours, is governed as much by how we feel and how engaged we are emotionally as it is with what we plan and intend to do.
Drawing on our team’s experience of developing multiple interventions to promote and support health behaviour change with a variety of populations in different global contexts, this article explores strategies with potential to address these issues.
Differential susceptibility theory (DST) posits that individuals differ in their developmental plasticity: some children are highly responsive to both environmental adversity and support, while others are less affected. According to this theory, “plasticity” genes that confer risk for psychopathology in adverse environments may promote superior functioning in supportive environments. We tested DST using a broad measure of child genetic liability (based on birth parent psychopathology), adoptive home environmental variables (e.g., marital warmth, parenting stress, and internalizing symptoms), and measures of child externalizing problems (n = 337) and social competence (n = 330) in 54-month-old adopted children from the Early Growth and Development Study. This adoption design is useful for examining DST because children are placed at birth or shortly thereafter with nongenetically related adoptive parents, naturally disentangling heritable and postnatal environmental effects. We conducted a series of multivariable regression analyses that included Gene × Environment interaction terms and found little evidence of DST; rather, interactions varied depending on the environmental factor of interest, in both significance and shape. Our mixed findings suggest further investigation of DST is warranted before tailoring screening and intervention recommendations to children based on their genetic liability or “sensitivity.”
The Early Growth and Development Study (EGDS) is a prospective adoption study of birth parents, adoptive parents and adopted children (n = 561 adoptees). The original sample has been expanded to include siblings of the EGDS adoptees who were reared by the birth mother and assessed beginning at age 7 years (n = 217 biological children), and additional siblings in both the birth and adoptive family homes, recruited when the adoptees were 8–15 years old (n = 823). The overall study aims are to examine how family, peer and contextual processes affect child and adolescent adjustment, and to examine their interplay (mediation, moderation) with genetic influences. Adoptive and birth parents were originally recruited through adoption agencies located throughout the USA following the birth of a child. Assessments are ongoing and occurred in 9 month’s intervals until the adoptees turned 3 years of age, and in 1 to 2 year intervals thereafter through age 15. Data collection includes the following primary constructs: child temperament, behavior problems, mental health, peer relations, executive functioning, school performance and health; birth and adoptive parent personality characteristics, mental health, health, context, substance use, parenting and marital relations; and the prenatal environment. Findings highlight the power of the adoption design to detect environmental influences on child development and provide evidence of complex interactions and correlations between genetic, prenatal environmental and postnatal environmental influences on a range of child outcomes. The study sample, procedures and an overview of findings are summarized and ongoing assessment activities are described.
To advance research from Dishion and others on associations between parenting and peer problems across childhood, we used a sample of 177 sibling pairs reared apart since birth (because of adoption of one of the siblings) to examine associations between parental hostility and children's peer problems when children were ages 7 and 9.5 years (n = 329 children). We extended conventional cross-lagged parent–peer models by incorporating child inhibitory control as an additional predictor and examining genetic contributions via birth mother psychopathology. Path models indicated a cross-lagged association from parental hostility to later peer problems. When child inhibitory control was included, birth mother internalizing symptoms were associated with poorer child inhibitory control, which was associated with more parental hostility and peer problems. The cross-lagged paths from parental hostility to peer problems were no longer significant in the full model. Multigroup analyses revealed that the path from birth mother internalizing symptoms to child inhibitory control was significantly higher for birth parent–reared children, indicating the possible contribution of passive gene–environment correlation to this association. Exploratory analyses suggested that each child's unique rearing context contributed to his or her inhibitory control and peer behavior. Implications for the development of evidence-based interventions are discussed.
Seven half-day regional listening sessions were held between December 2016 and April 2017 with groups of diverse stakeholders on the issues and potential solutions for herbicide-resistance management. The objective of the listening sessions was to connect with stakeholders and hear their challenges and recommendations for addressing herbicide resistance. The coordinating team hired Strategic Conservation Solutions, LLC, to facilitate all the sessions. They and the coordinating team used in-person meetings, teleconferences, and email to communicate and coordinate the activities leading up to each regional listening session. The agenda was the same across all sessions and included small-group discussions followed by reporting to the full group for discussion. The planning process was the same across all the sessions, although the selection of venue, time of day, and stakeholder participants differed to accommodate the differences among regions. The listening-session format required a great deal of work and flexibility on the part of the coordinating team and regional coordinators. Overall, the participant evaluations from the sessions were positive, with participants expressing appreciation that they were asked for their thoughts on the subject of herbicide resistance. This paper details the methods and processes used to conduct these regional listening sessions and provides an assessment of the strengths and limitations of those processes.
Herbicide resistance is ‘wicked’ in nature; therefore, results of the many educational efforts to encourage diversification of weed control practices in the United States have been mixed. It is clear that we do not sufficiently understand the totality of the grassroots obstacles, concerns, challenges, and specific solutions needed for varied crop production systems. Weed management issues and solutions vary with such variables as management styles, regions, cropping systems, and available or affordable technologies. Therefore, to help the weed science community better understand the needs and ideas of those directly dealing with herbicide resistance, seven half-day regional listening sessions were held across the United States between December 2016 and April 2017 with groups of diverse stakeholders on the issues and potential solutions for herbicide resistance management. The major goals of the sessions were to gain an understanding of stakeholders and their goals and concerns related to herbicide resistance management, to become familiar with regional differences, and to identify decision maker needs to address herbicide resistance. The messages shared by listening-session participants could be summarized by six themes: we need new herbicides; there is no need for more regulation; there is a need for more education, especially for others who were not present; diversity is hard; the agricultural economy makes it difficult to make changes; and we are aware of herbicide resistance but are managing it. The authors concluded that more work is needed to bring a community-wide, interdisciplinary approach to understanding the complexity of managing weeds within the context of the whole farm operation and for communicating the need to address herbicide resistance.
Maternal trauma is a complex risk factor that has been linked to adverse child outcomes, yet the mechanisms underlying this association are not well understood. This study, which included adoptive and biological families, examined the heritable and environmental mechanisms by which maternal trauma and associated depressive symptoms are linked to child internalizing and externalizing behaviors. Path analyses were used to analyze data from 541 adoptive mother–adopted child (AM–AC) dyads and 126 biological mother–biological child (BM–BC) dyads; the two family types were linked through the same biological mother. Rearing mother's trauma was associated with child internalizing and externalizing behaviors in AM–AC and BM–BC dyads, and this association was mediated by rearing mothers’ depressive symptoms, with the exception of biological child externalizing behavior, for which biological mother trauma had a direct influence only. Significant associations between maternal trauma and child behavior in dyads that share only environment (i.e., AM–AC dyads) suggest an environmental mechanism of influence for maternal trauma. Significant associations were also observed between maternal depressive symptoms and child internalizing and externalizing behavior in dyads that were only genetically related, with no shared environment (i.e., BM–AC dyads), suggesting a heritable pathway of influence via maternal depressive symptoms.
In a recent essay, Harker and coauthors stated that considering herbicide resistance as a wicked problem “without clear causes or solutions” ignores what weed scientists know about the biology and management of herbicide-resistant weeds. In this response, we argue that this misrepresents what is meant by “wicked” and that the wicked problem concept is valuable in understanding the multifaceted nature of herbicide resistance as a human-caused phenomenon.
Early callous–unemotional behaviours identify children at risk for
antisocial behaviour. Recent work suggests that the high heritability of
callous–unemotional behaviours is qualified by interactions with positive
To examine whether heritable temperament dimensions of fearlessness and
low affiliative behaviour are associated with early callous–unemotional
behaviours and whether parenting moderates these associations.
Using an adoption sample (n=561), we examined pathways
from biological mother self-reported fearlessness and affiliative
behaviour to child callous–unemotional behaviours via observed child
fearlessness and affiliative behaviour, and whether adoptive parent
observed positive parenting moderated pathways.
Biological mother fearlessness predicted child callous–unemotional
behaviours via earlier child fearlessness. Biological mother low
affiliative behaviour predicted child callous–unemotional behaviours,
although not via child affiliative behaviours. Adoptive mother positive
parenting moderated the fearlessness to callous–unemotional behaviour
Heritable fearlessness and low interpersonal affiliation traits
contribute to the development of callous–unemotional behaviours. Positive
parenting can buffer these risky pathways.
A segment of the debate surrounding the commercialization and use of glyphosate-resistant (GR) crops focuses on the theory that the implementation of these traits is an extension of the intensification of agriculture that will further erode the biodiversity of agricultural landscapes. A large field-scale study was initiated in 2006 in the United States on 156 different field sites with a minimum 3-yr history of GR-corn, -cotton or -soybean in the cropping system. The impact of cropping system, crop rotation, frequency of using the GR crop trait, and several categorical variables on seedbank weed population density and diversity was analyzed. The parameters of total weed population density of all species in the seedbank, species richness, Shannon's H′ and evenness were not affected by any management treatment. The similarity between the seedbank and aboveground weed community was more strongly related to location than management; previous year's crops and cropping systems were also important while GR trait rotation was not. The composition of the weed flora was more strongly related to location (geography) than any other parameter. The diversity of weed flora in agricultural sites with a history of GR crop production can be influenced by several factors relating to the specific method in which the GR trait is integrated (cropping system, crop rotation, GR trait rotation), the specific weed species, and the geographical location. Continuous GR crop, compared to fields with other cropping systems, only had greater species diversity (species richness) of some life forms, i.e., biennials, winter annuals, and prostrate weeds. Overall diversity was related to geography and not cropping system. These results justify further research to clarify the complexities of crops grown with herbicide-resistance traits to provide a more complete characterization of their culture and local adaptation to the weed seedbank.
Parental depressive symptoms are associated with emotional and behavioural problems in offspring. However, genetically informative studies are needed to distinguish potential causal effects from genetic confounds, and longitudinal studies are required to distinguish parent-to-child effects from child-to-parent effects.
We conducted cross-sectional analyses on a sample of Swedish twins and their adolescent offspring (n = 876 twin families), and longitudinal analyses on a US sample of children adopted at birth, their adoptive parents, and their birth mothers (n = 361 adoptive families). Depressive symptoms were measured in parents, and externalizing and internalizing problems measured in offspring. Structural equation models were fitted to the data.
Results of model fitting suggest that associations between parental depressive symptoms and offspring internalizing and externalizing problems remain after accounting for genes shared between parent and child. Genetic transmission was not evident in the twin study but was evident in the adoption study. In the longitudinal adoption study child-to-parent effects were evident.
We interpret the results as demonstrating that associations between parental depressive symptoms and offspring emotional and behavioural problems are not solely attributable to shared genes, and that bidirectional effects may be present in intergenerational associations.
Risk factors for the childhood development of co-occurring internalizing and externalizing symptoms are not well understood, despite a high prevalence and poor clinical outcomes associated with this co-occurring phenotype. We examined inherited and environmental risk factors for co-occurring symptoms in a sample of children adopted at birth and their birth mothers and adoptive mothers (N = 293). Inherited risk factors (i.e., birth mothers' processing speed and internalizing symptoms) and environmental risk factors (i.e., adoptive mothers' processing speed, internalizing symptoms, and uninvolved parenting) were examined as predictors for the development of internalizing-only, externalizing-only, or co-occurring symptoms using structural equation modeling. Results suggested a unique pattern of predictive factors for the co-occurring phenotype, with risk conferred by adoptive mothers' uninvolved parenting, birth mothers' slower processing speed, and the birth mothers' slower processing speed in tandem with adoptive mothers' higher internalizing symptoms. Additional analyses indicated that when co-occurring-symptom children were incorporated into internalizing and externalizing symptom groups, differential risk factors for externalizing and internalizing symptoms emerged. The findings suggest that spurious results may be found when children with co-occurring symptoms are not examined as a unique phenotypic group.
Ludwig’s Bustard Neotis ludwigii is globally ‘Endangered’ because of a projected population decline resulting from high collision mortality on power lines throughout its southern African range. Population monitoring is key to the effective conservation of threatened species, but there are no population trend data to confirm the impact of this mortality. We repeated extensive road and aerial census counts of Ludwig’s Bustards and other large terrestrial birds, previously conducted in the late 1980s, across the Karoo, South Africa. An aerial survey gave similar density patterns to a concurrent road count, suggesting that road counts are an adequate method for censusing Ludwig’s Bustards. In common with the 1980s surveys, there was a strong seasonal effect in the Succulent Karoo, with Ludwig’s Bustards abundant in winter and rare in summer. There was no evidence of a corresponding decline in the Nama Karoo in winter, but this probably relates to reduced detectability in the Nama Karoo in summer as there is evidence for large proportions of the population migrating between biomes. No relationship was found between the numbers of Ludwig’s Bustards and rainfall, perhaps because of larger scale rainfall patterns in the Karoo and/or because the species is not strictly nomadic. Compared with the 1980s, Ludwig’s Bustards were more strongly associated with transformed lands, which have increased marginally on road count transects. Using Distance, the current South African population is estimated at 114,000 (95% CI 87,000-148,000) birds, with no evidence for a population decline over the past two decades. Numbers of Blue Cranes Anthropoides paradiseus increased since the 1980s, corresponding with other data supporting this trend, but numbers of Karoo Korhaan Eupodotis vigorsii, Southern Black Korhaan Afrotis afra and Blue Korhaan E. caerulescens all decreased, raising concerns about the conservation status of these resident bustard species.