Thursday, 18 March 2010

The threat when invasives hybridize...

Rapid spread of invasive genes into a threatened native species Benjamin M. Fitzpatrick, Jarrett R. Johnson, D. Kevin Kump, Jeramiah J. Smith, S. Randal Voss and H. Bradley Shaffer PNAS Feb 2010
Models (in combination with field study) suggest that the rate of displacement of native by invasive alleles can be rapid and inevitable if they are favored by natural selection. The results illustrate that genetic and ecological factors need to be carefully weighed when considering different criteria for protection, because different rules could result in dramatically different geographic areas and numbers of individuals being protected.

Wednesday, 17 March 2010

Non-native bug to control Japanese Knotweed in the UK

In the news  reports that the UK will shortly go ahead and introduce a host-specific non-native psyllid called Aphalara itadori to try to control the spread of the highly invasive Japanese Knotweed. 

Tuesday, 16 March 2010

Australian evidence of climate change

From a news report on redOrbit:
CSIRO, in a joint "State of the Climate" report with the Bureau of Meteorology, presented findings in a report that the country's mean temperature has increased by 0.7 degrees Celsius in the past 50 years, though some areas have experienced as much as a 1.5 to 2 degree hike in temperatures...

Australian ants may help control cane toads!

Using a native predator (the meat ant, Iridomyrmex reburrus) to reduce the abundance of an invasive species (the cane toad, Bufo marinus) in tropical Australia Georgia Ward-Fear, Gregory P. Brown and Richard Shine Journal of Applied Ecology April 2010, 47, 273–280 doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2664.2010.01773.x

A new study from the University of Sydney that indicates native predatory ants in Queensland can be encouraged to predate on immature cane-toads spatially restricted to the edge of waterbodies.  As the ants are native there is limited 'colateral' damage to the local environment, giving encouraging results that they may act as an effective and ecologically sensitive biocontrol for this costly invasive.  
This was in in the news back in February.

Friday, 12 March 2010

F1000 review - candidates for April

Already Ive come across some likely candidates for our next f1000 review, so I thought Id post the articles I find this month prior to meeting up with Mark Lonsdale to choose our favourite for review...

Thursday, 11 March 2010

Aphid genome reveals its 'Achilles heel'

An interesting article Aphid genome reveals its 'Achilles heel' on a CSIRO-led CRCNPB project on the genome of the pea aphid.  Their results appeared recently in PLoS Biology (The International Aphid Genomics Consortium 2010: Genome Sequence of the Pea Aphid Acyrthosiphon pisum. PLoS Biol 8(2): e1000313. doi:10.1371/journal.pbio.1000313).
If science can stop aphids flying that would certainly limit their ability to spread virus such as BYDV - though it would also make my aphid spatial migration modelling efforts somewhat redundant!

Tuesday, 9 March 2010

First Review for F1000

Well, the review of the Willis paper on non-native vs. native species' response to climate change in Thoreau's wood is written, however, there is a small problem, someone else in F1000 already wrote a review and it was published today! Anyhow, here is both our review and that of Dr Michael Angilletta, Department of Biology, Indiana State University...   

Our Review
Mark Lonsdale: Faculty of 1000 Biology, 11 Mar 2010
Copyright F1000  

Saturday, 6 March 2010

Global Biosecurity 2010

I attended Global Biosecurity 2010 last week in Brisbane, Australia...

Favourable Climate Change response Explains Non-Native Species' Success in Thoreau's Woods

The first paper I will review for F1000 is:
Favorable Climate Change Response Explains Non-Native Species' Success in Thoreau's Woods Charles G. Willis, Brad R. Ruhfel, Richard B. Primack, Abraham J. Miller-Rushing, Jonathan B. Losos, Charles C. Davis Research Article, published 26 Jan 2010 | doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0008878