Zoologia (Curitiba), Volume: 28, Issue: 1, Published: 2011
  • Intraspecific interactions in the mangrove crab Ucides cordatus (Decapoda: Ocypodidae) during the metamorphosis and post-metamorphosis periods under laboratory conditions Aquaculture And Fisheries

    Ventura, Robson; Silva, Ubiratã A. T. da; Ostrensky, Antonio; Cottens, Kelly

    Abstract in English:

    Current efforts for restocking natural populations of the mangrove crab Ucides cordatus (Linnaeus, 1763) in Brazil have focused on developing a methodology for stimulating the metamorphosis of U. cordatus larvae at a large scale. The aim of the present study was to compare the mortality rates both in individual and mass conditions, during the induction of metamorphosis of megalopa to juvenile in U. cordatus, without the use of mangrove sediment as substrate. Furthermore, the importance of intraspecific antagonistic behavior on survivorship rates during early post-metamorphosis period was investigated. Metamorphosis was induced by the use of water conditioned with conspecific adults (30 indiv. 100 L-1 for 24 hours). In the first assay, megalopae were stimulated into metamorphosis in experimental vials, both under individual and mass rearing conditions. The second assay assessed the interactions between megalopae and first instar juveniles, which have metamorphosed for more than 24 hours. In the third assay, the existence of cannibalistic behavior among first instar juveniles under different experimental densities was investigated. Significant differences between survivorship rates of individuals that metamorphosed under individual and mass rearing conditions were detected. However no cannibalistic behavior between juveniles and megalopae was observed in the second assay. Juveniles reared at a density of 200 indiv.m-2 showed survivorship rates similar to those obtained under individual conditions. Yet 500 juveniles.m-2 treatments showed significantly lower survivorship rates. Intraspecific interactions appear to be an important problem in U. cordatus specifically during the metamorphosis, but not during larval and post-larval rearing.
  • Living in a caatinga-rocky field transitional habitat: ecological aspects of the whiptail lizard Cnemidophorus ocellifer (Teiidae) in northeastern Brazil Biology

    Menezes, Vanderlaine A; Sluys, Monique Van; Fontes, Angélica F; Rocha, Carlos F. D

    Abstract in English:

    The ecology of the active forager lizard Cnemidophorus ocellifer (Spix, 1825) was studied to analyze food habits, thermal ecology and habitat use, in the Morro do Chapéu municipality (11º29'S, 41º07'W), state of Bahia, Brazil. Lizards (N = 34) were collected with rubber bands or with an air rifle and, for each individual, we recorded cloacal temperature (Tc), air temperature (Ta) (1 cm above the substrate) and substrate temperature (Ts) (to nearest 0.2ºC). We registered the microhabitat used by each animal at the moment of first sight and measured its morphological variables (nearest 0.1 mm). In the laboratory, we registered the number of items of each prey category to the taxonomic level of Order, its dimensions and frequencies. Data showed that, numerically, the category most consumed was Isoptera (84.4%). Volumetrically, the diet was composed predominantly by Orthoptera (27.5%) and Isoptera (21.5%). Prey items that occur aggregated in the environment (termites) were important in the diet of C. ocellifer, a characteristic of active foragers. Males and females did not differ in the types of prey consumed. Cnemidophorus ocellifer had a mean Tc in activity of 37.6 ± 1.6ºC and the relationship between Tc and ambient temperatures (Ts and Ta) was positive and significant (F2,28 = 4.814; R² = 0.256; p < 0.05). Most lizards were first sighted on leaf litter inside shrubs (45.5%) and on leaf litter at shrub edge (42.4%). Cnemidophorus ocellifer had a relatively high mean Tc during activity, with Ts explaining most of the variation in lizard Tc.
  • Functional response of Phytoseiulus macropilis under different Tetranychus urticae (Acari: Phytoseiidae, Tetranychidae) population density in laboratory Biology

    Ferla, Noeli Juarez; Marchetti, Marla; Johann, Liana; Haetinger, Claus

    Abstract in English:

    We tested the functional response of the phytoseiid predator Phytoseiulus macropilis (Banks, 1904) to different population densities of Tetranychus urticae Koch, 1836 (the two-spotted spider mite - TSSM) in the laboratory. We evaluated the curve that best fits the data obtained, based on the reduced X². The predators were obtained from leaves of Oso Grande strawberries at the municipality of Bom Princípio, state of Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil. Fifteen seemingly healthy females of P. macropilis were randomly chosen and individualized in each of the arenas with different TSSM densities. The following prey densities were tested: 1, 2, 3, 5, 10, 20, 30, 35, 45, 55, 70 and 125 females. The tests were performed in a germination chamber with photoperiod of 12 hours at 28 ± 1ºC per day and 22 ± 1ºC at night and 80 ± 5% relative humidity. In all tests with up to three prey items, P. macropilis showed low functional response, whereas higher rates were observed when more prey items were offered. There was a strong positive correlation between increased prey numbers and daily prey consumption (r = 0.84 and p = 0.0006). A significant correlation was found between prey consumption and total oviposition (r = 0.70, p = 0.01). The daily oviposition rate was lower when few prey items were offered, increasing significantly with increased prey availability. The results showed a positive correlation between the number of prey items offered to the predator and its oviposition rate (r = 0.66, p = 0.01). Nevertheless, a strong correlation was observed between the daily consumption of prey and eggs/female/day (r = 0.92, p < 0.0001). A shorter oviposition period was reported when up to three prey items were offered. The oviposition period and the increase in prey numbers were positively correlated (r = 0.30, p = 0.34), but the difference was not statistically significant. Nevertheless, the longer the egg-laying period, the greater the oviposition rate (r = 0.90, p < 0.0001). The curve that best fits the data obtained in each case was also calculated, based on the least square method.
  • Abundance of bottlenose dolphins, Tursiops truncatus (Cetacea: Delphinidae), inhabiting the Patos Lagoon estuary, southern Brazil: implications for conservation Biology

    Fruet, Pedro F; Secchi, Eduardo R; Di Tullio, Juliana C; Kinas, Paul G

    Abstract in English:

    A new mark-recapture abundance estimate and a photographic census were carried out to investigate the possible decline in the abundance of the bottlenose dolphins, Tursiops truncatus (Montagu, 1821), in the Patos Lagoon estuary due to the high levels of bycatch mortality which occurred between 2002 and 2006 in oceanic coastal areas close to the estuary. Fourteen systematic boat surveys were conducted between August and early December 2005 to photo-identify the bottlenose dolphins. The estimated number of animals, with long-lasting marks, in the population obtained from Chapman's and Mth models were 51 (95% CI = 49-53) and 52 (95% CI = 51-60), respectively. Taking into account the proportion of dolphins with long-lasting marks in the population, the total estimated population size ranged between 84 (95% CI = 76-93) and 86 (95% CI = 78-95) individuals, respectively, which was very similar to the 84 individuals revealed by the population census. Our results did not differ from the abundance estimate carried out in 1998, prior to the high fishing-related mortality event, suggesting that the population is stable. Plausible argument to explain the stability of the population is that some carcasses found on the oceanic coastal beaches near Patos Lagoon estuary come from animals that do not belong to the estuary community. Future studies should investigate fine-scale habitat partition between estuarine and adjacent coastal dolphins. If the existence of different communities living in close proximity (estuarine and coastal areas near to the estuary) is confirmed, a new abundance estimate is needed to access the conservation status of bottlenose dolphins in this region.
  • The black flies (Diptera: Simuliidae) from Santa Catarina, Brazil Biology

    Coscarón, Sixto; Moreira, Gilson R. P; Py-Daniel, Victor; Sato, Gosuke; Nascimento, Érika S; Maia-Herzog, Marilza

    Abstract in English:

    The Simuliidae fauna from the Santa Catarina state, Brazil, was documented, based primarily on specimens deposited in the collections of the Instituto Oswaldo Cruz, Brazil and the La Plata Museum, Argentina. The results of our survey are organized by mesoregion and by municipality. Of the 51 municipalities where black flies were recorded, 46 represented new unpublished locality records. A total of 29 species belonging to two genera and eight subgenera were found, among which five are new records for the Santa Catarina state. The species recorded are (new records are marked with a *): Lutzsimulium hirticosta, Simuliium (Chirostilbia) acarayense, S. (Chirostilbia) distinctum, S. (Chirostilbia) empascae, S. (Chirostilbia) pertinax, S. (Chirostilbia) riograndense, S. (Chirostilbia) subpallidum, S. (Ectemnaspis) dinellii, S. (Ectemnaspis) lutzianum, S. (Ectemnaspis) perflavum, S. (Hemicnetha) rubrithorax, S. (Inaequalium) botulibranchium, S. (Inaequalium) clavibranchium, S. (Inaequalium) inaequale, S. (Inaequalium) itaunense, S. (Inaequalium) nogueirai, S. (Inaequalium) subclavibranchium, S. (Inaequalium) subnigrum, S. (Inaequalium) travassosi, S. (Notolepria) paraguayense*, S. (Psaroniocompsa) anamariae*, S. (Psaroniocompsa) angrense, S. (Psaroniocompsa) auripellitum, S. (Psaroniocompsa) auristriatum*, S. (Psaroniocompsa) incrustatum, S. (Psaroniocompsa) jujuyense, S. (Psaroniocompsa) limbatum*, S. (Psaroniocompsa) minuanum*, and S. (Thyrsopelma) orbitale.
  • Seasonal and spatial differences in feeding habits of the Neotropical otter Lontra longicaudis (Carnivora: Mustelidae) in a coastal catchment of southeastern Brazil Biology

    Rheingantz, Marcelo L; Waldemarin, Helen F; Rodrigues, Lívia; Moulton, Timothy P

    Abstract in English:

    The diet of the Neotropical otter Lontra longicaudis (Olfers, 1818) is one of the best known aspects of its biology throughout its distribution range. However, most dietary studies have been undertaken during short time periods, making it difficult to identify temporal patterns in the feeding behavior of the species. The present study aimed to describe the diet of L. longicaudis in the lower region of the Mambucaba Catchment, state of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, during a three year period, based on analyses of spraints (feces). The results show fish as the main prey item (frequency of occurrence, FO = 85.78%), as already described in previous studies. Crustaceans were the second main prey (FO = 70.67%), occurring in the spraints during the whole year, however presenting a higher frequency of occurrence than fish in samples collected during some months. Anurans were the third most important prey item (FO = 9.56%) and mammals, birds and reptiles were preyed upon only rarely (less than 4%). Fish and crustaceans were present in the diet of the species throughout the year and frogs were important mostly from June to August (dry season). This higher rate of predation on amphibians during the drier months was probably related to the decrease of the main prey.
  • Atol das Rocas: an oasis for Octopus insularis juveniles (Cephalopoda: Octopodidae) Biology

    Bouth, Helena F; Leite, Tatiana S; Lima, Françoise D. de; Oliveira, Jorge E. Lins

    Abstract in English:

    The habitat, population density, distribution and diet of Octopus insularis Leite & Haimovici, 2008 were studied in the Atol das Rocas Biological Reserve, based on visual census carried out in fixed quadrants. For each octopus den, we collected data on octopus size, substrate, type of den, and food remains around it. A total of 100 octopus dens were found within the fixed quadrants. The highest density occurred at Mapas area (0.30 inds/100 m²) and the lowest at Crista Algálica (0.07 inds/100 m²). The preferred den type was the one on the reef bed (69%), reinforcing the importance of rocky substrates for this species. A total of 454 food items, classified into 22 distinct taxa, were collected. The class Crustacea was best represented, accounting for 70.5% of the total prey, followed by Gastropoda (22.4%), Bivalvia (6.4%) and Cephalopoda (0.7%). Five species represented more than 80% of all findings: the crabs, Xanthodius denticulatus White, 1848 (38.5%), Microphrys bicornutus (Latreille, 1825) (18.5%) and Mithrax forceps Milne-Edwards, 1875 (7.0%); and the gastropods Hipponix sp. (9.3%) and Collisella sp. (8.4%). The overwhelming preference for small crabs shows that O. insularis is a specialized predator. The strong presence of juveniles inside the ring reef indicates the importance of this location for the development of this octopus species in northeastern Brazil.
  • A case of leucism in the burrowing owl Athene cunicularia (Aves: Strigiformes) with confirmation of species identity using cytogenetic analysis Biology

    Nogueira, Denise M; Alves, Maria Alice S

    Abstract in English:

    Leucism is an inherited disorder, characterized by the lack of pigments in part or all of the body, normal coloration of the eyes and, in birds, in naked parts such as the bill and legs. This kind of disorder is sometimes erroneously designated as albinism or partial albinism. In this study, we present a case of leucism in a wild owl. The studied individual presented completely white plumage, light-yellow coloration of legs and bill and normal coloration of eyes. According to morphological features, this owl is a specimen of burrowing owl, Athene cunicularia (Molina, 1782). To confirm the species identity, we used cytogenetic analyses for karyotypic determination, comparing it to the previously described one in the literature. We also studied a captive female of A. cunicularia to complement the species karyotype, which was described in the literature based only on a single male. The karyotype of the leucistic owl individual was compatible with the previously published one for A. cunicularia, confirming the bird was a male specimen. Cytogenetic analysis of the captive female showed that the W sex chromosome is metacentric and comparable to the seventh pair in size. This is the first description of a case of leucism in A. cunicularia for South America. Long-term studies are needed in the Neotropical region to evaluate survival and breeding success in leucistic birds.
  • Eloria subapicalis (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae: Lymantriinae): rare and specialist species on Erythroxylum (Erythroxylaceae) in the cerrado Biology

    Diniz, Ivone R; Lepesqueur, Cintia; Milhomen, Michelle S; Bandeira, Fabiana C. S; Morais, Helena C

    Abstract in English:

    Eloria subapicalis (Walker, 1855) is a rare species (61 individuals in four years of samplings) of Noctuidae (Lymantriinae) with a specific diet consisting of leaves of Erythroxylum P. Browne (Erytroxylaceae) species in Brasilia's cerrado. Generally, the rarity of a caterpillar species may have many explanations such as a generalist diet, being restricted to a host plant that is scarce in the area, or occurring in a limited geographical area. However, all the above explanations do not apply to E. subapicalis because it shows specificity of diet, uses a common host plant in the cerrado areas, and has a large geographical distribution.
  • The effects of four types of anthropogenic disturbances on composition and abundance of terrestrial isopods (Isopoda: Oniscidea) Conservation

    Magrini, Mariana J; Freitas, André V. L; Uehara-Prado, Marcio

    Abstract in English:

    The Brazilian Atlantic Forest is currently reduced to about 12% of its original range. Among the components that make up its great diversity, there are species with the potential to be bioindicators, which can be very important for conservation-oriented studies. This study compares the species composition, abundance and sex ratio of terrestrial isopods in sites that show different anthropogenic disturbance histories and are located within four reserves in the Atlantic Forest of southwestern Brazil. Our study explores these crustaceans as indicators of anthropogenic disturbance. The influence of one of the following factors was explored in each protected area: 1) history of vegetation harvesting, 2) trail management, 3) Eucalyptus planting, and 4) edge effect. A total of 2,217 individuals of six species (Atlantoscia sp., Benthana werneri Lemos de Castro, 1958, Pseudodiploexochus tabularis (Barnard, 1932), Pudeoniscus obscures Lemos de Castro, 1973, Styloniscus spinosus (Patience, 1907), and Trichorhina sp.) were captured in pitfall traps. The composition of isopod species was different between most of the contrasting sites within reserves, and was similar among the less disturbed sites of different reserves. The total number of isopod individuals and the sex ratio were not different between the contrasting sites within most of the reserves and only the sex ratio of Atlantoscia sp. differed between contrasting sites of one protected area. Upon an individual analysis of each species, S. spinosus (an exotic species) was most abundant in more disturbed sites. The distributions of B. werneri and Atlantoscia sp. over time were relatively synchronous, except where S. spinosus was abundant. Our results also indicate that the exotic species S. spinosus may benefit from the vegetation mosaic produced by disturbance, so differences in abundance of this species may be useful for bioindication. A change in the spatial and temporal structure of Oniscidea communities caused by anthropogenic disturbance may have a cascade effect on ecological cycles because terrestrial isopods play a fundamental role in nutrient cycling.
  • A comparison of dung beetle assemblage structure (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae: Scarabaeinae) between an Atlantic forest fragment and adjacent abandoned pasture in Paraná, Brazil Ecology

    Lopes, José; Korasaki, Vanesca; Catelli, Lizandra L; Marçal, Viviani V. M; Nunes, Maria Paula B. P

    Abstract in English:

    The study was conducted at the Mata dos Godoy State Park in Londrina, state of Paraná, Brazil. Baited pitfall traps were installed in the forest, in adjacent abandoned pasture land, and on the borders between these two environments. Every two weeks, from June 1999 to May 2000, the traps were placed for 24 hours and the material was collected every 12 hours. The 4687 specimens of Scarabaeinae collected belong to 13 genera and 27 species. The most frequent species were Onthophagus catharinensis (Paulian, 1936) (22.1%), Onthophagus hirculus (Mannerhein, 1829) (20.1%), Dichotomius mormon (Ljungh, 1799) (13.1%), Sulcophanaeus menelas (Laporte, 1840) (12.8%), and Eurystemus parallelus (Dalman, 1824) (10.6%). The other species collected amounted to less than 4.7%. The difference in numbers of specimens collected in the three environments was not significant (K(2.72) = 0.63, p = 0.729). The distribution patterns of species composition for the different environments (ANOSIM R = 0.29, p < 0.01) and activity periods (ANOSIM R = 0.18, p < 0.01) were different. Sulcophanaeus menelas, Canthidium aff. trinodosum, O. hirculus, and E. parallelus were the most abundant species, being predominantly diurnal; the first three species were more active on abandoned pasture. Most of the Dichothomius assifer (Eschscholtz, 1822) and D. mormon specimens were captured at night. The latter species was the most abundant in edges, whereas D. assifer, Scybalochantum aff. zischkai, and O. catharinensis can be considered bioindicators because they were either exclusively or highly predominant in the best preserved areas. A larger number of individuals was observed from December 1999 through March 2000, which is the time of the year when adults of Scarabaeinae normally emerge and fly, in the studied region. The highest diversity (88.89%) was observed in February.
  • Influence of pitfall trap size and design on herpetofauna and small mammal studies in a Neotropical Forest Ecology

    Ribeiro-Júnior, Marco A; Rossi, Rogério V; Miranda, Cleuton L; Ávila-Pires, Teresa C. S

    Abstract in English:

    One of the most commonly used sampling techniques to capture leaf litter amphibians, lizards and small mammals is a set of pitfall traps with drift fences. However, there are still many speculations concerning the effectiveness of different designs of pitfall traps and the most adequate size of each trap. To address this problem, we conducted the first standardized comparison of patterns of species richness, rank-abundance, and community structure of leaf litter amphibians, lizards and small mammals for two trap designs (I and Y format) and three bucket sizes (35, 62, and 100 L) in a Neotropical forest. Results are very similar for the herpetofauna, regardless of the pitfall trap design or size used, while for small mammals values of species richness were higher for 100 L pitfall traps, as compared to the smaller traps. Therefore, the use of 100 L pitfall traps is recommended to sample the terrestrial vertebrate fauna, in multidisciplinary studies. For surveys aiming only the herpetofauna the use of smaller (35 L) traps is acceptable, taking into consideration the cost-benefits obtained by the smaller traps, in comparison to the larger ones.
  • A new karyotype of Wiedomys pyrrhorhinus (Rodentia: Sigmodontinae) from Chapada Diamantina, northeastern Brazil Genetics

    Souza, Ana L. G; Corrêa, Margaret M. de O; Aguilar, Cecília T. de; Pessôa, Leila M

    Abstract in English:

    A new karyotype of Wiedomys pyrrhorhinus (Wied, 1821) is described, including G- and C-banding and Ag-NOR sites from specimens collected in the municipality of Morro do Chapéu, situated in the northern region of the Chapada Diamantina, state of Bahia. Karyological studies of W. pyrrhorhinus have shown a constant diploid number (2n) of 62 with two different numbers of autosomal arms (FNa): 86 and 90, respectively. The new karyotype revealed 2n = 62 and FNa = 104, being the higher autosomal number found so far for this genus. The X chromosome is a large acrocentric and the Y chromosome is a small acrocentric. The analysis of the karyotype morphology suggests that this new karyotype is more closely related to the previous karyotype with 2n = 62 and FNa = 90, described from Caetité, Bahia State. Further studies, comparing different populations of W. pyrrhorhinus, including molecular approaches, may help to better understand the geographical limits of each population and their phylogenetic relationships in the Caatinga biome
  • Morphological description of Dipturus mennii (Chondrichthyes: Elasmobranchii: Rajidae) and its differentiation from Dipturus trachyderma Taxonomy And Nomenclature

    Moreira, Renan A; Gomes, Ulisses L; Carvalho, Marcelo R. de

    Abstract in English:

    Squamation patterns and skeletal anatomy (neurocranium, visceral arches, synarcual cartilage, scapulocoracoid, puboischiadic bar, and mixopterigium) of Dipturus mennii Gomes & Paragó, 2001 are described as a contribution to our limited knowledge of the anatomy of species of Dipturus Rafinesque, 1810. The hyoid and branchial arches, as well as the synarcual cartilage, are described for the first time in this species. We provide morphological comparisons of this species with Dipturus trachyderma (Krefft & Stehmann, 1975), a species that may be confused with D. mennii; we further corroborate, through anatomical features, that these species warrant separate taxonomic recognition. The main differences between D. mennii and D. trachyderma were found in squamation of the nuchal and middisc region, neurocranium, pectoral girdle, and principally the clasper skeleton. The morphology of the pelvic girdle is similar in both species. Dipturus is characterized by having the ventral terminal cartilage J-shaped (as opposed to the Z-shaped ventral terminal cartilage in Zearaja, whose species were, until recently, placed in Dipturus). Additional characters that may be derived for Dipturus include the anterior rostral groove and elevated rostral proportions
  • Description of the male of Pozonia bacillifera (Araneae: Araneidae) Taxonomy And Nomenclature

    Magalhães, Ivan Luiz Fiorini de; Santos, Adalberto J

    Abstract in English:

    Pozonia Schenkel, 1953 is a genus of Neotropical orb-weaving spiders that currently includes four species, three of which are known only from females. In this paper, the male of Pozonia bacillifera (Simon, 1897) is described and illustrated for the first time, based on a specimen from Nova Lima, state of Minas Gerais, Brazil. It differs from the male of P. nigroventris (Bryant, 1936), the only other known male of the genus, in characters of the genitalia, such as the larger embolus and the smaller ventral lobe of the paracymbium, as well as in the shape of the sternum. This represents the first record of P. bacillifera for the region
  • The identity of Myotis punensis (Chiroptera: Vespertilionidae) Taxonomy And Nomenclature

    Moratelli, Ricardo; Wilson, Don E

    Abstract in English:

    Currently twelve species of Myotis Kaup, 1829 (Vespertilionidae: Myotinae) are recognized from South America, with several other named taxa regarded as synonyms, among them Myotis punensis J.A. Allen, 1914. This name was first regarded as a junior synonym of Myotis albescens (É. Geoffroy, 1806) and subsequently of Myotis nigricans (Schinz, 1821). To address the taxonomic status of the holotype of M. punensis, we compared it to all South American species in the genus. The fringe of hairs on the trailing edge of the uropatagium, the fur color, and external and skull dimensions all suggest M. punensis should be treated as a junior synonym of M. albescens
  • Aglaenita (Hemiptera: Cicadellidae: Neocoelidiinae): a new species from Brazil Taxonomy And Nomenclature

    Marques-Costa, Ana Paula

    Abstract in English:

    Aglaenita Spinola, 1850 comprises fourteen species, all occurring in Brazil, including a new species, A. hambletoni sp. nov., which is described herein. The genus is close to Biza Walker, 1858 and Megacoelidia Kramer & Linnavuori, 1959. Aglaenita hambletoni sp. nov. can be distinguished from other Aglaenita species mainly by the characters of male genitalia, especially by the pygofer bearing an apical bifurcated process, the branches of the process pointed and sclerotized, the upper branch longer than the lower, tooth-like one; and by the aedeagus without processes and with the ventral margin without teeth. The diagnosis of the genus and the known geographical distribution of its species are also given
  • Diet of margay, Leopardus wiedii, and jaguarundi, Puma yagouaroundi, (Carnivora: Felidae) in Atlantic Rainforest, Brazil Short Communication

    Bianchi, Rita de Cassia; Rosa, Aline F; Gatti, Andressa; Mendes, Sérgio L

    Abstract in English:

    This study identifies the food habits of the margay, Leopardus wiedii (Schinz, 1821), and the jaguarundi, Puma yagouaroundi (É. Geoffroy Saint-Hilare, 1803), in the Vale do Rio Doce Natural Reserve and in the Sooretama Biological Reserve, Espírito Santo, Brazil. We determined the diet of both species by the analysis of scats. Fecal samples were collected from April 1995 to September 2000 and identified based on the presence of hairs that were ingested during self-grooming. Scats were oven-dried and washed on a sieve, and the screened material was identified using a reference collection. Of the 59 fecal samples examined, 30 were confirmed to be from the margay and nine of them from the jaguarundi. Mammals were the most consumed items in the diet of the margay, occurring in 77% of the fecal samples, followed by birds (53%) and reptiles (20%). Among the mammals consumed, marsupials (Didelphimorphia) were the most common item (66%). In the diet of the jaguarundi, birds were the most consumed items and occurred in 55% of the fecal samples; mammals and reptiles occurred in 41% and in 17% of the fecal samples, respectively. From this work we conclude that the margay and jaguarundi fed mainly upon small vertebrates in the Vale do Rio Doce Natural Reserve and in the Sooretama Biological Reserve. Although sample sizes are therefore insufficient for quantitative comparisons, margays prey more frequently upon arboricolous mammals than jaguarundis, which in turn prey more frequently upon birds and reptiles than margays. This seems to reflect a larger pattern throughout their geographic range
  • Single nucleotide polymorphisms from cytochrome b gene as a useful protocol in forensic genetics against the illegal hunting of manatees: Trichechus manatus, Trichechus inunguis, Trichechus senegalensis, and Dugong dugon (Eutheria: Sirenia) Short Communication

    Ferreira, Paula Braga; Torres, Rodrigo A; Garcia, José Eduardo

    Abstract in English:

    The identification of mitochondrial DNA polymorphisms is one of the most efficient methods for species differentiation. Genotyping of molecular markers using PCR/RFLP is a reliable, sensitive and inexpensive method for the detection of species specific mutations. The major causes of decline in Sirenia populations are accidental and intentional catches, collisions with boats and habitat loss. The goal of the present study was to identify, in silico, nucleotide mutations in the cytochrome b gene that can be used for the future development of forensic tools capable of using small tissue fragments to discriminate manatee meat from domesticated species meat commonly used as food sources (bovine, ovine, caprine and swine). DNA sequence alignments revealed two polymorphic sites distinguishing the manatee species from domestic species. The present study reinforced the power of cytochrome polymorphisms as powerful markers for species identification, which may be particularly useful for identifying vulnerable/endangered species. The data provided herein also suggest such mtDNA markers as important conservation tools for combating predatory manatee hunting for illegal meat trade in the Americas
  • Spring migration characteristics of the House Martin, Delichon urbica (Aves: Hirundinidae) in Croatia: A response to climate change? Short Communication

    Dolenec, Zdravko; Dolenec, Petra

    Abstract in English:

    Many authors have discussed use of birds (and other organisms) as sensitive biomonitors for climate change. In this paper we investigate the long-term trends in first arrival dates of the long-distance migratory House Martin, Delichon urbica (Linneus, 1758), in north-western Croatia during the 28-year period. The aim of this paper is to identify possible relationship between arrival times and local spring air temperatures. Between 1981 and 2008 the House Martin arrived progressively earlier (5.9 days), probably in response to climate change. First arrival dates correlated significantly with increasing March-April mean temperatures. Correlation between mean spring air temperature and yearly temperatures were also statistically significant. Our results suggest that the arrival timing of the House Martin is influenced by spring air temperatures
  • An unusual reproductive mode in Hypsiboas (Anura: Hylidae) Short Communication

    Moura, Mário Ribeiro de; Motta, Ana Paula; Feio, Renato Neves

    Abstract in English:

    We report an unusual reproductive behavior of Hypsiboas pardalis (Spix, 1824). Species belonging to this genus usually are known to reproduce in lentic water bodies, with the development of exotrophic tadpoles. Herein, the bromeligenous behavior is reported for the first time in Hypsiboas Wagler, 1830. Although this reproductive behavior has been observed more than once here, we believe that it is not typical of Hypsiboas, being better characterized as an unusual reproductive mode for Hypsiboas, indicating the presence of plasticity in the reproductive modes of H. pardalis
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