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Bad Münster am Stein-Ebernburg, Germany

Esther A.,University of Potsdam | Esther A.,Federal Research Center for Cultivated Plants | Groeneveld J.,Center for Environmental Research | Groeneveld J.,University of Auckland | And 7 more authors.
Journal of Vegetation Science

Question: The majority of studies investigating the impact of climate change on local plant communities ignores changes in regional processes, such as immigration from the regional seed pool. Here we explore: (i) the potential impact of climate change on composition of the regional seed pool, (ii) the influence of changes in climate and in the regional seed pool on local community structure, and (iii) the combinations of life history traits, i.e. plant functional types (PFTs), that are most affected by environmental changes. Location: Fire-prone, Mediterranean-type shrublands in southwestern Australia. Methods: Spatially explicit simulation experiments were conducted at the population level under different rainfall and fire regime scenarios to determine the effect of environmental change on the regional seed pool for 38 PFTs. The effects of environmental and seed immigration changes on local community dynamics were then derived from community-level experiments. Classification tree analyses were used to investigate PFT-specific vulnerabilities to climate change. Results: The classification tree analyses revealed that responses of PFTs to climate change are determined by specific trait characteristics. PFT-specific seed production and community patterns responded in a complex manner to climate change. For example, an increase in annual rainfall caused an increase in numbers of dispersed seeds for some PFTs, but decreased PFT diversity in the community. Conversely, a simulated decrease in rainfall reduced the number of dispersed seeds and diversity of PFTs. Conclusions: PFT interactions and regional processes must be considered when assessing how local community structure will be affected by environmental change. © 2010 International Association for Vegetation Science. Source

Song J.,China Agricultural University | Liu Y.,China Agricultural University | Zhang J.,China Agricultural University | He X.,China Agricultural University | And 2 more authors.
Nongye Jixie Xuebao/Transactions of the Chinese Society of Agricultural Machinery

In order to research the drift mechanism and develop effective anti-drift technology, phase Doppler particle analyzer (PDPA) was used to analyze droplets size and velocity distribution in spraying fan near flat fan nozzles. Results showed that the distribution of droplets size (VMD) in spraying fan sectional view was like a concave, and droplets size varied following quadratic polynomial in cross-symmetry plane and lengthwise-symmetry plane of spraying fan. Droplets drifting easily were located in the 300-500 mm of the centre of spraying fan far from nozzles. Entrained air velocity in spraying fan varied following Gauss distribution, and the flow field of entrained air was similar to a submerged air jet. Major drifting areas were evaluated depending on the droplets size and velocity distribution in spraying fan. Results showed that there were three major drifting areas in spraying fan: cross edges of spraying fan, wake region of spraying fan and outer layer facing wind of spraying fan. Source

Imholt C.,Federal Research Center for Cultivated Plants | Reil D.,Federal Research Center for Cultivated Plants | Plasil P.,Northwest German Forest Research Institute Gottingen Germany | Jacob J.,Federal Research Center for Cultivated Plants
Pest Management Science

BACKGROUND: Several rodent species can damage forest trees, especially at young tree age in afforestation. Population outbreaks of field voles (Microtus agrestis L.) and bank voles (Myodes glareolus Schreber) in particular can cause losses. RESULTS: Analyses of long-term time series indicate good synchrony of population abundance in rodent species associated with damage in forestry. This synchrony could be related to the effect of beech (Fagus spec.) mast in the previous year on population growth rates of both species. In shorter time series from Eastern Germany, damage in forestry was mostly associated with autumn abundances of rodents. Environmental factors such as beech mast and snow cover did not explain additional variation in rodent damage to trees. CONCLUSIONS: Beech mast is a good indicator of long-term rodent abundance in Northern German afforestation areas. However, rodent damage to forestry in Central Germany did not seem to depend on environmental parameters other than rodent abundance at large scale. As a result, there is still uncertainty about the link between environmental predictors and rodent damage to forestry, and further experimental work is required to identify suitable environmental drivers and their interplay with other potential factors such as the local predator community. © 2016 Society of Chemical Industry. Source

Jacob J.,Federal Research Center for Cultivated Plants | Budde M.,Federal Research Center for Cultivated Plants | Leukers A.,Federal Research Center for Cultivated Plants | Leukers A.,University of Munster
Pest Management Science

Background: Minimising the concentration of active ingredient in rodenticide bait is desirable economically and for the protection of the agroecosystem. This study aimed to identify a zinc phosphide concentration that balances palatability and efficacy for common vole (Microtus arvalis Pall.) management and to compare the attractiveness of two bait carriers. Results: Bait uptake of voles was reduced by 87-98% compared with plain bait when bait contained 0.4-3.2% zinc phosphide. There was an almost 50% decrease in the uptake of zincphosphide when the zinc phosphide concentration of bait was doubled. Red dye used in commercially available bait decreased bait consumption by 10%. Daily consumption of zinc phosphide bait on days 2 to 5 was half the consumption on the first day of exposure. In bait choice tests, wheat kernels were preferred initially, but within 12 h similar amounts of wheat-based pellets and wheat kernels were eaten. Conclusions: According to the results from the laboratory trial, a zinc phosphide concentration of 2.1% seemed to balance uptake/efficacy best and may be most appropriate for the management of common vole populations. This concentration is substantially lower than the concentration used in many registered products. A reduced concentration of active ingredient and the use of pellet bait instead of wheat which is highly attractive for birds may have advantages for agroecosystem health when applying zinc phosphide for rodent control. © Jens Jacob, Mechthild Budde and Angela Leukers, employees of the Federal Research Centre for Cultivated Plants, Germany. © 2009 Society of Chemical Industry. Source

Rumbaur C.,TU Munich | Thevs N.,University of Greifswald | Thevs N.,World Agroforestry Center | Disse M.,TU Munich | And 33 more authors.
Earth System Dynamics

The Tarim River basin, located in Xinjiang, NW China, is the largest endorheic river basin in China and one of the largest in all of Central Asia. Due to the extremely arid climate, with an annual precipitation of less than 100 mm, the water supply along the Aksu and Tarim rivers solely depends on river water. This is linked to anthropogenic activities (e.g., agriculture) and natural and semi-natural ecosystems as both compete for water. The ongoing increase in water consumption by agriculture and other human activities in this region has been enhancing the competition for water between human needs and nature. Against this background, 11 German and 6 Chinese universities and research institutes have formed the consortium SuMaRiO (Sustainable Management of River Oases along the Tarim River; http://www.sumario.de), which aims to create a holistic picture of the availability of water resources in the Tarim River basin and the impacts on anthropogenic activities and natural ecosystems caused by the water distribution within the Tarim River basin. On the basis of the results from field studies and modeling approaches as well as from suggestions by the relevant regional stakeholders, a decision support tool (DST) will be implemented that will then assist stakeholders in balancing the competition for water, acknowledging the major external effects of water allocation to agriculture and to natural ecosystems. This consortium was formed in 2011 and is funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research. As the data collection phase was finished this year, the paper presented here brings together the results from the fields from the disciplines of climate modeling, cryology, hydrology, agricultural sciences, ecology, geoinformatics, and social sciences in order to present a comprehensive picture of the effects of different water availability schemes on anthropogenic activities and natural ecosystems along the Tarim River. The second objective is to present the project structure of the whole consortium, the current status of work (i.e., major new results and findings), explain the foundation of the decision support tool as a key product of this project, and conclude with application recommendations for the region. The discharge of the Aksu River, which is the major tributary of the Tarim, has been increasing over the past 6 decades. From 1989 to 2011, agricultural area more than doubled: cotton became the major crop and there was a shift from small-scale to large-scale intensive farming. The ongoing increase in irrigated agricultural land leads to the increased threat of salinization and soil degradation caused by increased evapotranspiration. Aside from agricultural land, the major natural and semi-natural ecosystems are riparian (Tugai) forests, shrub vegetation, reed beds, and other grassland, as well as urban and peri-urban vegetation. Within the SuMaRiO cluster, focus has been set on the Tugai forests, with Populus euphratica as the dominant tree species, because these forests belong to the most productive and species-rich natural ecosystems of the Tarim River basin. At sites close to the groundwater, the annual stem diameter increments of Populus euphratica correlated with the river runoffs of the previous year. However, the natural river dynamics cease along the downstream course and thus hamper the recruitment of Populus euphratica. A study on the willingness to pay for the conservation of the natural ecosystems was conducted to estimate the concern of the people in the region and in China's capital. These household surveys revealed that there is a considerable willingness to pay for conservation of the natural ecosystems, with mitigation of dust and sandstorms considered the most important ecosystem service. Stakeholder dialogues contributed to creating a scientific basis for a sustainable management in the future. © Author(s) 2015. Source

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