ISSN : 2287-8327
Adult land crabs generally live on land while their larvae live in the sea. In the case of Sesarma haematoche, female crabs migrate from land to sea to release the larvae at the high tide of syzygy night. Artificial structures along coastal areas are being obstacles for the migration of land crabs and causing synchronized roadkills on coastal roads during breeding migration. In this research, we compared the sex ratios of crab populations in coastal areas with coastal roads and uninhabited island areas with no road. The proportion of females in inland habitats with coastal roads was significantly smaller than island habitats. In particular, females are exposed to the risk of annually repeated roadkills, and the proportion of females decreases rapidly with their growth. If this tendency is general for land crab populations in the coastal areas with roads, significant road mortality of female land crabs during breeding migration can lead to severe population decline in coastal areas. Therefore, it is necessary to take an action to save land crabs crossing coastal roads.
Background: Rapid industrialization has caused various impacts on nature, including heavy metal pollution. However, the impacts of industrialization vary depending on the types of industrializing activity and surrounding environment. South Korea is a proper region because the rapid socio-economical changes have been occurred since the late nineteenth century. Therefore, in this study, we estimate the anthropogenic impacts on an ecosystem from a sediment core of Yonghwasil-mot, an irrigation reservoir on the western coast of Korea, in terms of heavy metal concentrations, nutrient influx, and pollen composition. Results: The sediment accumulation rate (SAR) determined by 210Pb geochronology showed two abrupt peaks in the 1930s and 1950s, presumably because of smelting activity and the Korean War, respectively. The following gradual increase in SAR may reflect the urbanization of recent decades. The average concentrations of arsenic (As), copper (Cu), and lead (Pb) during the twentieth century were > 48% compared to those before the nineteenth century, supporting the influence of smelting activity. However, at the beginning of the twenty-first century, the As, Cu, and Pb concentrations decreased by 19% compared to levels in the twentieth century, which is coincident with the closure of the smelter in 1989 and government policy banning leaded gasoline since 1993. The pollen assemblage and nutrient input records exhibit changes in vegetation cover and water level of the reservoir corresponding to anthropogenic deforestation and reforestation, as well as to land-use alteration. Conclusions: Our results show that the rapid socio-economic development since the twentieth century clearly affected the vegetation cover, land use, and metal pollutions.
Background: Parthenium hysterophorus is a noxious invasive weed in tropical and subtropical regions of the world, including Nepal. Among 11 species of biological control agents released to control P. hysterophorus in Ausrtalia, winter rust Puccina abrupta var. partheniicola arrived fortuitously and has established in Kathmandu Valley, Nepal, nearly a decade back. However, the prevalence and effectiveness of this rust as a biological control agent in Kathmandu remain unknown. To address this knowledge gap, a roadside survey was done at an interval of 2 ± 0.25 km in Kathmandu Valley to assess the P. abrupta var. partheniicola incidence and its impacts on P. hysterophorus. Infested individuals of P.hysterophorus were further divided into four severity classes (very low, low, medium, and high), and rust incidence was calculated. The impact of the winter rust on the growth of P. hysterophorus was assessed by comparing biomass and seed output of infested and non-infested individuals. Results: Among 81 locations where P. hysterophorus was present in the Kathmandu Valley, winter rust infestation was observed at 98% locations. At some locations within Kathmandu Valley such as Tinkune, Kirtipur, Chabahil, Buddha Chowk, and Dhobighat, the impacts of the rust on P. hysterophorus were medium to high. Aboveground biomass and seed output of P. hysterophorus were reduced by 47% and 73%, respectively, due to winter rust infestation. The study indicates that winter rust incidence is widespread in Kathmandu Valley with very low to high levels of damages to P.hysterophorus depending on the localities. Conclusion: The rust has, therefore, a potential to reduce the growth performance of P. hysterophorus, and it can be used as a component of integrated management of P. hysterophorus by introducing to other suitable areas in Nepal.
Background: Genus Quercus is a successful group that has occupied the largest area of forest around the world including South Korea. The acorns are an important food source for both wild animals and humans. Although the reproductive characteristics of this genus are highly variable, it had been rarely studied in South Korea. Therefore, in Seoraksan and Odaesan National Parks (i) we measured the acorn production of Quercus mongolica, an overwhelmingly dominant species in South Korea, for 3 years (2017–2019), (ii) evaluated the spatial-temporal variation of acorn production, and (iii) analyzed the effects of oak- and site-related variables on the acorn production. Results: The annual acorn production of Q. mongolica increased 36 times from 1.2 gm−2 in 2017 to 43.2 gm−2 in 2018, and decreased to 16.7 gm−2 in 2019, resulting in an annual coefficient of variation of 104%. The coefficient of spatial variation was high and reached a maximum of 142%, and the tree size was the greatest influencing factor. That is, with an increase in tree size, acorn production increased significantly (2018 F = 16.3, p < 0.001; 2019 F = 8.2, p < 0.01). Elevation and slope also significantly affected the production in 2019. However, since elevation and tree size showed a positive correlation (r = 0.517, p < 0.001), the increase in acorn production with increasing elevation was possibly due to the effect of tree size. The acorn production of Odaesan for 3 years was 2.2 times greater than that of Seoraksan. This was presumed that there are more distribution of thick oak trees and more favorable site conditions such as deep soil A-layer depth, high organic matter, and slower slopes. Conclusion: As reported for other species of the genus Quercus, the acorn production of Q. mongolica showed large spatial and annual variations. The temporal variability was presumed to be a weather-influenced masting, while the spatial variability was mainly caused by oak tree size.
Background: The stem exclusion stage is a stage of forest development that is important for understanding the subsequent understory reinitiation stage and maturation stage during which horizontal heterogeneity is formed. Over the past 11 years (2009–2019), we observed a deciduous broad-leaved forest in the Albongbunji Basin in Ulleungdo, South Korea in its stem exclusion stage, where Fagus engleriana (Engler’s beech) is the dominant species, thereby analyzing the changes in the structure (density and size distributions), function (biomass and species richness), and demographics. Results: The mean stem density data presented a bell-shaped curve with initially increasing, peaking, and subsequently decreasing trends in stem density over time, and the mean biomass data showed a sigmoidal pattern indicating that the rate of biomass accumulation slowed over time. Changes in the density and biomass of Fagus engleriana showed a similar trend to the changes in density and biomass at the community level, which is indicative of the strong influence of this species on the changing patterns of forest structure and function. Around 2015, a shift between recruitment and mortality rates was observed. Deterministic processes were the predominant cause of tree mortality in our study; however, soil deposition that began in 2017 in some of the quadrats resulted in an increase in the contribution of stochastic processes (15% in 2019) to tree mortality. The development of horizontal heterogeneity was observed in forest gaps. Conclusions: Our observations showed a dramatic shift between the recruitment and mortality rates in the stem exclusion stage, and that disturbance increases the uncertainty in forest development increases. The minor changes in species composition are likely linked to regional species pool and the limited role of the life-history strategy of species such as shade tolerance and habitat affinity. Our midterm records of ecological succession exhibited detailed demographic dynamics and contributed to the improvement of an ecological perspective in the stem exclusion stage.
Background: Ambrosia trifida is a highly invasive annual plant, but effective control methods have not been proposed. Among various eradication methods, cutting is a simple measure to control invasive plants, and sowing seeds of native plants may effectively increase biotic resistance to invasion. In this study, we conducted a field experiment with two treatments: cutting and sowing seeds of six native or naturalized plants. Results: We found a significantly lower A. trifida abundance after cutting than in the control (77% decrease). Sowing seeds of native species did not provide any additional benefit for the control of A. trifida, but increased the importance values and diversity of other native vegetation. The abundance of A. trifida was negatively correlated with that of other plant taxa based on plant cover, biomass, and density. However, biotic resistance of sown plants was not effective to control invasion because A. trifida was so competitive. Conclusions: We concluded that cutting is an effective measure to control Ambrosia trifida while sowing seeds of native plants can increase native plant diversity.
Background: Climate change has altered the various ecosystem processes including forest ecosystem in Himalayan region. Although the high mountain natural forests including treelines in the Himalayan region are mainly reported to be temperature sensitive, the temperature-related water stress in an important growth-limiting factor for middle elevation mountains. And there are very few evidences on growth performance of planted forest in changing climate in the Himalayan region. A dendrochronological study was carried out to verify and record the impact of warming temperature tree growth by using the tree cores of Pinus roxburghii from Batase village of Dhulikhel in Central Nepal with sub-tropical climatic zone. For this total, 29 tree cores from 25 trees of P. roxburghii were measured and analyzed. Result: A 44-year long tree ring width chronology was constructed from the cores. The result showed that the radial growth of P. roxburghii was positively correlated with pre-monsoon (April) rainfall, although the correlation was not significant and negatively correlated with summer rainfall. The strongest negative correlation was found between radial growth and rainfall of June followed by the rainfall of January. Also, the radial growth showed significant positive correlation with that previous year August mean temperature and maximum temperature, and significant negative correlation between radial growth and maximum temperature (Tmax) of May and of spring season (March-May), indicating moisture as the key factor for radial growth. Despite the overall positive trend in the basal area increment (BAI), we have found the abrupt decline between 1995 and 2005 AD. Conclusion: The results indicated that chir pine planted population was moisture sensitive, and the negative impact of higher temperature during early growth season (March-May) was clearly seen on the radial growth. We emphasize that the forest would experience further moisture stress if the trend of warming temperatures continues. The unusual decreasing BAI trend might be associated with forest management processes including resin collection and other disturbances. Our results showed that the planted pine forest stand is sub-healthy due to major human intervention at times. Further exploration of growth climate response from different climatic zones and management regimes is important to improve our understanding on the growth performance of mid-hill pine forests in Nepal.
Background: In Korea, Symplocos prunifolia Siebold. & Zucc. is only found on Jeju Island. Conservation of the species is difficult because little is known about its distribution and natural habitat. The lack of research and survey data on the characteristics of native vegetation and distribution of this species means that there is insufficient information to guide the management and conservation of this species and related vegetation. Therefore, this study aims to identify the distribution and vegetation associated with S. prunifolia. Results: As a result of field investigations, it was confirmed that the native S. prunifolia communities were distributed in 4 areas located on the southern side of Mt. Halla and within the evergreen broad-leaved forest zones. Furthermore, these evergreen broad-leaved forest zones are themselves located in the warm temperate zone which are distributed along the valley sides at elevations between 318 and 461 m. S. prunifolia was only found on the south side of Mt. Halla, and mainly on south-facing slopes; however, small communities were found to be growing on northwest-facing slopes. It has been confirmed that S. prunifolia trees are rare but an important constituent species in the evergreen broad-leaved forest of Jeju. The mean importance percentage of S. prunifolia community was 48.84 for Castanopsis sieboldii, 17.79 for Quercus acuta, and 12.12 for Pinus thunbergii; S. prunifolia was the ninth most important species (2.6). Conclusions: S. prunifolia can be found growing along the natural streams of Jeju, where there is little anthropogenic influence and where the streams have caused soil disturbance through natural processes of erosion and deposition of sediments. Currently, the native area of S. prunifolia is about 3300 m2, which contains a confirmed population of 180 individual plants. As a result of these low population sizes, it places it in the category of an extremely endangered plant in Korea. In some native sites, the canopy of evergreen broad-leaved forest formed, but the frequency and coverage of species were not high. Negative factors that contributed to the low distribution of this species were factors such as lacking in shade tolerance, low fruiting rates, small native areas, and special habitats as well as requiring adequate stream disturbance. Presently, due to changes in climate, it is unclear whether this species will see an increase in its population and habitat area or whether it will remain as an endangered species within Korea. What is clear, however, is that the preservation of the present native habitats and population is extremely important if the population is to be maintained and expanded. It is also meaningful in terms of the stable conservation of biodiversity in Korea. Therefore, based on the results of this study, it is judged that a systematic evaluation for the preservation