Author: Grace Q. Zhang

Abstract

Existing studies focus on the effectiveness of vague language (VL). This study offers a balanced account by highlighting the ineffectiveness of VL. Drawn from institutional data involving the interactions between Australian custom officers and passengers, this study finds that while VL was effective in most cases, it was challenged in 8 % of cases. The data reveals a correlation: the more severe a situation is, the more VL is challenged. Officers performed the most VL challenging when carrying out their institutional duties, and passengers challenged VL to clarify information. Half of the responses to the VL challenge produced the required precise information. Non-compliance occurred because of either no information being available (mostly by officers, non-purposive vagueness) or withholding information (mostly by passengers, purposive vagueness). VL serves both cooperative and competitive purposes depending on the needs of the speaker. It is a double-edged sword and can both facilitate and hinder the proper use of language. The implication is that the acceptance of VL is not universal, and it requires contextual suitability to avoid communication breakdowns.

In: International Review of Pragmatics

The changes in ion-exchange characteristics of synthetic mordenite ground by a planetary ball mill under dry conditions were investigated using radioisotopes of 137 Cs and 85Sr as tracers. The self-diffusion of Cs+ in the mordenite sample was facilitated in the initial stage of grinding, while it was leveled off for the further operation. The relative amount of Cs+ immediately exchanged in the mordenite sample was gradually styptic to a constant value with increase in grinding time after showing a rapid reduction in amount in the early stages of grinding. High selectivity of the mordenite sample for Cs+ against Sr2+ observed in acidic solution diminished obviously with an increase in grinding time.

In: Amphibia-Reptilia

To explore the pathogenic mechanism of white spot syndrome virus (WSSV) in crayfish (Cherax quadricarinatus), we analysed activities of the three immune-related enzymes PO, SOD and LSZ in haemolymph tissue of C. quadricarinatus before and after infection, and simultaneously studied the ultrastructural pathology. The results show that WSSV infection affects activities of the three enzymes. After 6-24 h of WSSV infection, the activities of PO, SOD and LSZ increased, but decreased significantly during longer infection times. The enzyme activities in WSSV-infected crayfish were significantly lower than those in controls at 72 h, except for LSZ (P<0.01). Interestingly, the activities of PO, SOD and LSZ in the group treated with immune-polysaccharides before challenge with WSSV were higher than in the directly infected group, and the immune protection rate reached 51.9%, suggesting that the polysaccharides could improve enzyme activities and enhance antiviral defences of the organism. Ultrastructural pathological changes showed damaged haemolymph tissue, deformed golgiosomes, fuzzy damage in the mitochondrial structures, and nuclear membrane deformation and fracture. High levels of heterochromatin appeared in the nucleus; organoid and chromatin dissolved in dying blood cells, cytoplasm appeared oedematous and cells dissolved. WSSV particles were visible in blood cell nuclei of infected crayfish.

In: Crustaceana

Abstract

To explore the effect of temperature and salinity on the mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) copy number of Palaemon carinicauda Holthuis, 1950, 5 temperature groups (10, 15, 20, 25 and 30°C) and 6 salinity groups (10, 15, 20, 25, 30 and 35) were set up, respectively. Subsequently, the numbers of copies of mtDNA of samples from all groups were detected by the TaqMan probe method. The results showed that the mtDNA copy number in the temperature samples was 2388, 2366, 4158, 4805 and 6027 at the above-mentioned temperature values, respectively. Obviously, the number of mtDNA copies in the cell tends to increase as temperatures rise. In addition, the mtDNA copy numbers of the salinity samples was 2609, 2593, 3215, 3478, 2618 and 2709, respectively, at the experimental salinities as listed above. This indicates, that the copy numbers of mtDNA tend to increase at first, and then again to decrease as the salinity values rise and pass beyond a threshold.

In: Crustaceana

Animals alter their behaviour during habituation to novel environments. Echolocating bats exhibit remarkable flexibility in their acoustic signals to sense diverse microhabitats. Previous studies have described intra-individual variation in echolocation calls of bats in different environments, but few studies have systematically quantified these changes in detail. We investigated variation in echolocation call structure of the great leaf-nosed bat, Hipposideros armiger during habituation to a novel, captive environment. Echolocation calls of free-ranging bats were recorded in the natural habitat and in captivity over a three-week period. We found that bats exhibited significant changes in some call parameters following introduction to the novel captive environment, and some parameters changed continuously over time. We observed plasticity in peak frequency, pulse duration and pulse rate during the captive period. This suggests that variation in echolocation calls of bats in response to a novel captive environment is a progressive process, during which bats adjust echolocation call structure to habituate gradually to their surroundings.

In: Behaviour