Few studies have quantified the relative reproductive success of passerines in urban habitats. I studied food availability and reproductive success of barn swallows Hirundo rustica in two urban habitats during 2012–2015. Barn swallows breeding in the town center experienced lower insect densities than those in the town periphery.
Few groups of insects have been surveyed over a very long period (50 years or more) in an area. Three groups were considered here meeting the long survey condition: ground beetles (Coleoptera: Carabidae), ground Scelionidae (Hymenoptera) and species of Tenthredo (Hymenoptera: Tenthredinidae). The diversity of ground beetles in agricultural sites around Ottawa (Ontario) and Montreal (Quebec) has been markedly reduced during the 1980s and 1990s. During the same period we witnessed the collapse of other insect groups outside agricultural sites.
The Darwin's frog (Rhinoderma darwinii) is the latest amphibian species to face extinction due to the global chytridiomycosis pandemic, according to an international study published today in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society of London B. The study has found that Darwin's frogs are infected with the fungal pathogen Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd), and despite an absence of obvious mortality researchers have noted population declines, leading them to believe that these infected populations are at a serious risk of extinction within 15 years of contracting the disease.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service today protected Black Warrior waterdog salamanders under the Endangered Species Act, with 420 river miles of protected “critical habitat.” The rare salamanders, found only in one river basin in Alabama, are on the brink of extinction because of ongoing habitat destruction and water pollution from agricultural and industrial operations.
Concerns about the rapid and severe declines of many bumble bee (Bombus spp.) species in Europe, and more recently North America, have spurred research into the extent and possible causes for these losses. Drawing conclusions has been difficult due to a lack of long-term data, especially for specific regions that may have different factors at play than the global trend. In this study, 150 years of Bombus records in the state of New Hampshire from the University of New Hampshire Insect Collection were examined.
Neonicotinoids are the most prominent group of insecticides in the world and are commercialized in over 120 countries for the control of agricultural pests mainly due to their broad-spectrum activity and versatility in application. Though non-target soil organisms are likely to be exposed during application, there is paucity of information in scientific literature regarding their sensitivity to neonicotinoids.
The use of pyrethroid and neonicotinoid insecticides has increased in Australia over the last decade, and as a consequence, increased concentrations of the neonicotinoid insecticide imidacloprid have been measured in Australian rivers. Previous studies have shown that non-target crustaceans, including commercially important species, can be extremely sensitive to these pesticides.
Federal scientists have determined that a family of widely used pesticides poses a threat to dozens of endangered and threatened species, including Pacific salmon, Atlantic sturgeon and Puget Sound orcas. The National Marine Fisheries Service issued its new biological opinion on three organophosphate pesticides - chlorpyrifos, diazinon and malathion - after a yearslong court fight by environmental groups.
The Northern Pintail (Anas acuta) is a dabbling duck. Diet is mostly plant material, including seeds of grasses, sedges, pondweeds, and waste grain in fields. In summer its diet includes more animal matter, such as insects, crustaceans, mollusks, and sometimes tadpoles and small fish. It forages in shallow water by upending or by submerging its head and neck while swimming, looking for food in the underwater mud. It also forages by walking on land.The North American Breeding Bird Survey noted a cumulative decline of the Northern Pintail population of 72% between 1966 and 2012.
Clouds of emerging mayflies were once a regular sight on English summer evenings and they are a key part of the food chain that supports fish, birds and mammals. But modest levels of pollution found in many English rivers are having a devastating impact on mayflies, new research suggests, killing about 80% of all eggs. In October, a study found that the abundance of flying insects has plunged by 75% in 25 years, prompting warnings that the world is “on course for ecological Armageddon”, with profound impacts on human society.