The current reliability of species identifications by the Nature Identification API (NIA) of the app ObsIdentify is tested with a Coleoptera (Insecta) sample set from Germany. Seventy-five photographic beetle records taken with a smartphone camera under “average user” conditions are analysed in terms of correctness of the app’s identification result on various taxonomic levels, the displayed confidence level of the identification and the time until validation of the results. More than 60% of samples were identified correctly at the species level, but only 53% were validated within a month. The mechanisms by which users can upload pictures of their observations to be identified by the artificial intelligence and the validation process by experts are briefly explained. Regional specifics and further opportunities for data usage as well as currently existing problems are discussed and improvements are suggested. The expert validation of records is identified as a huge quality advantage of the Obs-Services. They are generally found to be a promising tool for lay people and professional institutions, despite still existing deficiencies such as identification failure in mutilated specimens, cryptic and rare species, doubtful species rarity ratings as well as the still insufficient capacity of validation. Experts and institutions are encouraged to volunteer as validators and collaborators.
Responses to colored patterns were collected for a group of 60 naive participants. We explicitly aimed at affective responses, rather than aesthetic judgments, so this is not ‘color harmony’ proper. Patterns were mainly spatially highly structured compositions, the color palettes reminiscent of what is found in generic ‘colorist’ art. Color combinations systematically cover mono-, di-, and trichromatic chromatic chords, whereas there was always an additional achromatic component. This sets the research apart from the bulk of the mainstream literature on ‘color harmony.’ Various ways of analysis are compared. Clustering methods reveal that the responses are highly structured through the teal–orange (cool–warm) dimension. Clustering reveals a large group of mutually concordant participants and various small, idiosyncratic groups. When the data is coarse-grained, retaining only a limited red–blue–yellow palette, the group as a whole appears quite concordant. It is evident that responses are systematic, thus the notion of a universal affective response to color combinations gains some credibility. The precise affective responses are specific because constrained by the seven categories used in the experiment. Thus, the systematic structure is perhaps to be understood as the generic result. We discuss tangencies with various traits found with ‘colorist’ art styles.
Ground parenchyma cells play a crucial role in the growth and the mechanical properties of bamboo plants. Investigation of the morphology of ground parenchyma cells is essential for understanding the physiological functions andmechanical properties of these cells. This study aimed to characterize the anatomical structure of bamboo ground parenchyma cells and provide a qualitative and quantitative basis for the more effective utilization of bamboo. To do this, the morphology of ground parenchyma cells in Moso bamboo (Phyllostachys edulis) was studied using light microscopy and field-emission environmental scanning electron microscopy. Results show that various geometric shapes of ground parenchyma cells were observed, including nearly circular, square, long, oval, and irregular shapes. Cell walls of both long and short parenchyma cells exhibited primary wall thickening and secondary wall thickening, resulting in a primary pit field and simple pits. Most long cells were strip-shaped (L/W = 2.52), while most short cells were short and wide (L/W = 0.59). The proportion of long cells was 11 times greater than that of short cells. Most long cells were filled with starch grains, and some short cells also occasionally had starch grains. These findings allowed the first construction of the three-dimensional structure of parenchyma cells.
This study provides novel information about gregariousness and intraspecific aggression in Iberian bullfinches (Pyrrhula pyrrhula iberiae) in northwestern Spain. Small monospecific parties never exceeding 10 individuals were seen throughout the year, larger in winter on average. Males considerably outnumbered females within the groups. Adult flocks were frequent only in winter. In spring, many of the adult groups were mixed-sex assemblages composed of pairs plus supernumerary males. Sightings of juvenile groups, up to seven individuals, were common in summer–autumn. The vigilance role in mixed-sex assemblages, including pairs, appeared to be the responsibility of males based on sex-specific vigilance rates. The highest frequency of aggressive encounters, mainly male against male, occurred during the breeding season, associated with mate defence. Females attacked males, not the contrary, which supports reversed sexual dominance in bullfinches. Gregariousness probably acted as an anti-predatory and foraging strategy.
Globodera pallida is the most damaging pest of potato in the UK. This work underpins enhancement of a well-established, web-based scenario analysis tool for its management by recommending additions and modifications of its required inputs and a change in the basis of yield loss estimates. The required annual decline rate of the dormant egg population is determined at the individual field sample level to help define the required rotation length by comparing the viable egg content of recovered cysts to that of newly formed cysts for the same projected area. The mean annual decline was 20.4 ± 1.4% but ranged from 4.0 to 39.7% annum−1 at the field level. Further changes were based on meta-analysis of previous field trials. Spring rainfall in the region where a field is located and cultivar tolerance influence yield loss. Tolerance has proved difficult to define for many UK potato cultivars in field trials but uncertainty can be avoided without detriment by replacing it with determinacy integers. They are already determined to support optimisation of nitrogen application rates. Multiple linear regression estimates that loss caused by pre-plant populations of up to 20 viable eggs (g soil)−1 varies from ca 0.2 to 2.0% (viable egg)−1 (g soil)−1 depending on cultivar determinacy and spring rainfall. Reliability of the outcomes from scenario analysis requires validation in field trials with population densities over which planting is advisable.
Individual fitness can be boosted by behavioural strategies that maximise mate-finding probability while minimising predation risk. Animals that use acoustics to find mates may benefit from using both stationary calling and active exploration, but these also expose them to different types of predators. Studying calling and searching behaviours concurrently allows us to understand their evolutionary trade-offs between survival and reproduction. Unlike most other crickets, lebinthine males alternate between singing and exploration to find females, which offer a unique and excellent opportunity to test for inter-individual differences and behavioural syndrome between call properties and exploratory behaviours. Our data demonstrate that call properties and exploratory behaviour were repeatable. We did not, however, find that call properties correlate with exploration as some consistently exploratory individuals produce longer calls while others produce shorter calls. Our study suggests that lebinthine males use different combinations of calling and exploratory behaviours to cope with unpredictable risk–benefit scenarios.
An Oryza sativa cultivar inoculated with the white tip nematode, Aphelenchoides besseyi, was cultivated over 18 years to investigate the population dynamics of the nematode and the change in the virulence of nematodes and tolerance/resistance of plants. The mean number of living nematodes per seed (S) showed two peaks, each of which was followed by a 3-year decrease in the S value, during the initial 10 years. The annual reproduction curve between in year and in year t had a peak in a range of of <1.1. The incidence of white tip disease increased with increasing mean number of living nematodes seed−1 in the previous year, whereas the proportion of seeds with living nematodes increased with increasing mean number of living nematodes seed−1 in the current year. Inoculation tests of the nematode cohorts on the seedling cohorts derived from seeds harvested in the same or different years indicated that the initial 6-year interaction between the rice and nematode populations caused the nematodes to increase the incidence of white tip disease and to decrease the degree of seed swelling and the proportion of heavy seeds. On the other hand, the interaction caused the rice plants to prevent the incidence of disease from increasing and the degree of seed swelling and the proportion of heavy seeds from decreasing.
The increasing interest in agroecological practices and the current consideration of agrarian soils as a sustainable resource are driving the development of new strategies to manage soil parasites and diseases. The application of organic matter from different sources to reduce plant parasites contributes to circular economy by applying by-products as soil organic amendments that reduce wastes. Wine vinasse (WV) is a by-product generated to obtain alcohol from wine by physical methods in distilleries. The aim of this study was to determine the potential of WV and its combination with animal manure (WV+M) as soil biodisinfestation products. For this, it was compared with a plastic-covered control to distinguish the biodisinfestation from solarisation effect. The crops tested consisted of a tomato-Swiss chard rotation under glasshouse conditions. Their effects on Meloidogyne incognita, soil fertility, nematode community and crop yield were assessed. The results obtained after two seasons showed a reduction of M. incognita galling in the root system of both crops. The immediate effect after the treatment application was a reduction in the abundance of nematodes and changes in the nematode-based indices that affected all plots, including the control, most likely related to the tillage effect for the treatments application and the plastic cover. Soil fertility was improved by the application of WV (NO3−, Bioav. P) and WV+M (C, Ntotal, K), which reduced herbivore nematode metabolic footprints and enhanced bacterivore footprints. Our results indicate that the combination WV+M was effective reducing M. incognita infection, and improved crop yield. Use of by-products such as WV is a helpful tool for managing horticultural soils.
Dendrobatid poison frogs are known for their diverse parental care behaviours, including terrestrial egg attendance. While usually this behaviour is conducted by males, this study compared the pre-hatching investment of males and females in Ranitomeya imitator, a species with biparental care. Although males tended to spend more time with their eggs overall, there was no difference between sexes when comparing different types of care behaviour. Furthermore, both sexes increased general care behaviour when caring for more than one clutch. The finding that the sexes are relatively equal in their contribution to basic parental care forms provides a basis to understand why biparental care is stable in this species.