South China Institute of Endangered Animals

Guangzhou, China

South China Institute of Endangered Animals

Guangzhou, China
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Guo P.,Yibin University | Zhang L.,South China Institute of Endangered Animals | Liu Q.,Yibin University | Li C.,Yibin University | And 4 more authors.
Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution | Year: 2013

•Lycodon and Dinodon were supported as sharing a most recent common ancestor.•Dinodon was paraphyletic and Lycodon was polyphyletic.•The arrangement of maxillary teeth was not usable to separate Dinodon and Lycodon. Based on a molecular phylogeny and a comparison of maxillary dentition and morphology, the relationship between the genera Lycodon and Dinodon was investigated. Bayesian Inference and Maximum Likelihood analysis of two mitochondrial genes (cyt b and ND4) and two nuclear genes (c-mos and Rag1) suggested that the two genera shared a most recent common ancestor. However, Dinodon was paraphyletic and Lycodon was polyphyletic, each with respect to the other. The results from counts of maxillary teeth indicated that the diagnostic characters used by previous authors to separate Dinodon and Lycodon were not reliable. Taking the molecular and morphological evidence together, we synonymized Dinodon with Lycodon. In addition, the validity of the species L. futsingensis was confirmed to be distinctly different from the other species of Dinodon and Lycodon. © 2013 Elsevier Inc..

Zou F.,South China Institute of Endangered Animals | Zou F.,Sun Yat Sen University | Chen G.,Sun Yat Sen University | Yang Q.,South China Institute of Endangered Animals | Fellowes J.R.,Kadoorie Farm and Botanic Garden
Ibis | Year: 2011

A total of 134 bird species were recorded at Jianfengling, Hainan Island, in China from May 2000 to September 2004, of which 44 participated in one or more of 134 mixed-species flocks. These flocks averaged 3.8±0.2 species and 20.3±1.2 individuals. Flocking propensity in a given species ranged from 1.5 to 100%. For flocking species, frequency of flocking and number of individuals in flocks was positively correlated with frequency and number in point counts. Among all species pairs with flocking frequency above 5%, cluster and correlation analysis indicated there were two principal groups of flocking birds - canopy species and understorey species: associations were positive within a group, but negative between groups. Canopy birds had a higher flocking propensity than understorey birds. They also made significantly less use of inner branches and trunks and greater use of middle branches, and foraged at a significantly greater height when in mixed-species flocks than when solitary. For understorey bird species, there were no significant differences in foraging locations between solitary and mixed-species flocks. Higher flocking frequency occurred in the wet season for canopy birds, but in the dry season for understorey birds. Overall patterns were consistent with the explanation that flocking enables an expansion of foraging niche by reducing the risk of predation. © 2011 The Authors. Journal compilation © 2011 British Ornithologists' Union.

Hu J.,CAS Institute of Zoology | Hu J.,CAS Chengdu Institute of Biology | Hu H.,South China Institute of Endangered Animals | Jiang Z.,CAS Institute of Zoology
Oecologia | Year: 2010

There is now ample evidence of the effects of anthropogenic climate change on the distribution and abundance of species. The black-faced spoonbill (Platalea minor) is an endangered migratory species and endemic to East Asia. Using a maximum entropy approach, we predicted the potential wintering distribution for spoonbills and modeled the effects of future climate change. Elevation, human influence index and precipitation during the coldest quarter contributed most to model development. Five regions, including western Taiwan, scattered locations from eastern coastal to central mainland China, coastal areas surrounding the South China Sea, northeastern coastal areas of Vietnam and sites along the coast of Japan, were found to have a high probability of presence and showed good agreement with historical records. Assuming no limits to the spread of this species, the wintering range is predicted to increase somewhat under a changing climate. However, three currently highly suitable regions (northeastern Vietnam, Taiwan and coastal areas surrounding the South China Sea) may face strong reductions in range by 2080. We also found that the center of the predicted range of spoonbills will undergo a latitudinal shift northwards by as much as 240, 450, and 600 km by 2020, 2050 and 2080, respectively. Our findings suggest that species distribution modeling can inform the current and future management of the black-faced spoonbill throughout Asia. It is clear that a strong international strategy is needed to conserve spoonbill populations under a changing climate. © 2010 Springer-Verlag.

Chu J.-H.,National Taiwan Normal University | Chu J.-H.,National Taiwan University | Wegmann D.,University of Fribourg | Yeh C.-F.,National Taiwan Normal University | And 6 more authors.
Molecular Biology and Evolution | Year: 2013

When geographic isolation drives speciation, concurrent termination of gene flow among genomic regions will occur immediately after the formation of the barrier between diverging populations. Alternatively, if speciation is driven by ecologically divergent selection, gene flow of selectively neutral genomic regions may go on between diverging populations until the completion of reproductive isolation. It may also lead to an unsynchronized termination of gene flow between genomic regions with different roles in the speciation process. Here, we developed a novel Approximate Bayesian Computation pipeline to infer the geographic mode of speciation by testing for a lack of postdivergence gene flow and a concurrent termination of gene flow in autosomal and sex-linked markers jointly. We applied this approach to infer the geographic mode of speciation for two allopatric highland rosefinches, the vinaceous rosefinch Carpodacus vinaceus and the Taiwan rosefinch C. formosanus from DNA polymorphisms of both autosomal and Z-linked loci. Our results suggest that the two rosefinch species diverged allopatrically approximately 0.5 Ma. Our approach allowed us further to infer that female effective population sizes are about five times larger than those of males, an estimate potentially useful when comparing the intensity of sexual selection across species. © The Author 2013.

Dong F.,CAS Kunming Institute of Zoology | Dong F.,University of Chinese Academy of Sciences | Li S.-H.,National Taiwan Normal University | Zou F.-S.,South China Institute of Endangered Animals | And 4 more authors.
Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution | Year: 2014

The streak-breasted scimitar babbler, Pomatorhinus ruficollis, is a polytypic and taxonomically enigmatic babbler common in southern, eastern, and southeastern Asia. To infer the phylogeny of the P. ruficollis, we examined the sequences of two complete mitochondrial genes (2184. bp in total) from fourteen of the fifteen known subspecies, and an additional five nuclear genes (2657. bp in total) from ten subspecies. The mitochondrial phylogeny indicates four major clades with large geographical identity in P. ruficollis and paraphyly of the P. ruficollis species complex, with the inclusion of the olivaceus group of congeneric P. schisticeps. Together with their interbreeding in northern Indochina, we propose to lump this group into P. ruficollis. Analysis of both multilocus networks and species-tree inference recovered poor phylogenetic structure among mainland/ Hainan subspecies and exclusive groupings of the Taiwanese subspecies, consistent with the recent taxonomic revision of its species status. Our analyses also suggest strong incongruence between the morphological-based classification and molecular systematics, implying the strength of multilocus data for taxonomy. © 2013 Elsevier Inc.

Mo L.,CAS Guangzhou Institute of Geochemistry | Mo L.,University of Chinese Academy of Sciences | Wu J.-P.,CAS Guangzhou Institute of Geochemistry | Luo X.-J.,CAS Guangzhou Institute of Geochemistry | And 2 more authors.
Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry | Year: 2012

Brominated flame retardants (BFRs) including polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs), decabromodiphenyl ethane (DBDPE), and 1,2-bis(2,4,6-tribromophenoxy) ethane (BTBPE), were investigated in common kingfishers (Alcedo atthis) and their prey fish from an electronic waste-recycling site in south China. Elevated BFR residues were detected in the kingfishers, with median concentrations of 8,760, 12, and 7.7ng/g lipid weight for total PBDEs, DBDPE, and BTBPE, respectively. The calculated predator/prey biomagnification factors (BMFs) were greater than unity for most of the investigated PBDE congeners, with relatively higher values for some hexa-, hepta-, and octa-BDEs (e.g., BDEs 153, 183, 196, 197, 202, and 203). The average BMFs ranged 0.10 to 0.77 and 1.90 to 3.60 for DBDPE and BTBPE, respectively. The BMFs for BTBPE were comparable to or even greater than those for some tri- to penta-BDEs in certain predator/prey pairs, indicating potentially high environmental risks of this compound. Significantly higher concentration ratios of BDEs 202 and 207 to BDE 209 were observed in the kingfishers compared with their prey fish, and these ratios were negatively correlated with the logarithm of BDE 209 concentrations in the kingfishers. This may indicate biotransformation of BDE 209 to BDEs 202 and 207 in these birds. This is the first assessment of the biomagnification potentials of DBDPE and BTBPE in a wild piscivorous bird. © 2012 SETAC.

Sun Y.-X.,CAS Guangzhou Institute of Geochemistry | Sun Y.-X.,University of Chinese Academy of Sciences | Luo X.-J.,CAS Guangzhou Institute of Geochemistry | Mo L.,CAS Guangzhou Institute of Geochemistry | And 7 more authors.
Environmental Pollution | Year: 2012

Polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs), decabromodiphenyl ethane (DBDPE), polybrominated biphenyls (PBBs) and pentabromotoluene (PBT) were investigated in light-vented bulbul (LVB), long-tailed shrike (LTS) and oriental magpie-robin (OMR) collected from seven sampling sites in South China. ∑PBDEs, DBDPE, PBB 153, and PBT levels ranged from 35 to 15 000, no detected (nd)-130, nd-6800, and nd-6.8 ng/g lipid weight, respectively. Positive correlations were found between δ 15N values and brominated flame retardant (BFR) concentrations. The BFR geographic pattern indicated that PBDEs were linked to e-waste recycling and local industry activities as well as urbanization; PBB 153 was derived from e-waste; DBDPE was mainly come from local industry activities; and no specific source was observed for PBT. PBDE congener profiles were found to be depended on bird species and sampling sites with relatively high abundances of lower brominated congeners in e-waste site and significantly higher abundance of BDE153 in LTS and OMR than in LVB. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Qu Y.,CAS Institute of Zoology | Luo X.,Southwest forestry University | Zhang R.,CAS Institute of Zoology | Song G.,CAS Institute of Zoology | And 2 more authors.
BMC Evolutionary Biology | Year: 2011

Background: Pleistocene climate fluctuations have shaped the patterns of genetic diversity observed in many extant species. In montane habitats, species' ranges may have expanded and contracted along an altitudinal gradient in response to environmental fluctuations leading to alternating periods of genetic isolation and connectivity. Because species' responses to climate change are influenced by interactions between species-specific characteristics and local topography, diversification pattern differs between species and locations. The eastern Himalayas is one of the world's most prominent mountain ranges. Its complex topography and environmental heterogeneity present an ideal system in which to study how climatic changes during Pleistocene have influenced species distributions, genetic diversification, and demography. The Elliot's laughing thrush (Garrulax elliotii) is largely restricted to high-elevation shrublands in eastern Himalayas. We used mitochondrial DNA and microsatellites to investigate how genetic diversity in this species was affected by Pleistocene glaciations. Results: Mitochondrial data detected two partially sympatric north-eastern and southern lineages. Microsatellite data, however, identified three distinct lineages congruent with the geographically separated southern, northern and eastern eco-subregions of the eastern Himalayas. Geographic breaks occur in steep mountains and deep valleys of the Kangding-Muli-Baoxin Divide. Divergence time estimates and coalescent simulations indicate that lineage diversification occurred on two different geographic and temporal scales; recent divergence, associated with geographic isolation into individual subregions, and historical divergence, associated with displacement into multiple refugia. Despite long-term isolation, genetic admixture among these subregional populations was observed, indicating historic periods of connectivity. The demographic history of Garrulax elliotii shows continuous population growth since late Pleistocene (about 0.125 mya). Conclusion: While altitude-associated isolation is typical of many species in other montane regions, our results suggest that eco-subregions in the eastern Himalayas exhibiting island-like characteristics appear to have determined the diversification of Garrulax elliotii. During the Pleistocene, these populations became isolated on subregions during interglacial periods but were connected when these expanded to low altitude during cooler periods. The resultant genetic admixture of lineages might obscure pattern of genetic variation. Our results provide new insights into sky island diversification in a previously unstudied region, and further demonstrate that Pleistocene climatic changes can have profound effects on lineage diversification and demography in montane species. © 2011 Qu et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

Zhang Q.,CAS South China Botanical Garden | Zhang Q.,University of Chinese Academy of Sciences | Han R.,South China Institute of Endangered Animals | Zou F.,South China Institute of Endangered Animals
Forest Ecology and Management | Year: 2011

To examine the relationship between forest succession after severe logging forestry practices and the composition of avian communities, we investigated how forest bird composition and guild structure change as a function of structural properties along a successional gradient, including a climax mature forest (>400 years), a rehabilitated mixed forest (50-70 years), and a disturbed Masson pine forest (70 years) of the Dinghushan Nature Reserve, Guangdong Province, China. Of a total of 51 resident species recorded, mixed forests hosted the highest numbers of individuals and species, reflecting the high species richness of both forest and non-forest species. For forest-dependent species, however, mature stands had the highest observed and estimated species richness. Of 6 habitat-use guilds identified, vertical-profile generalists and understory-birds formed the two dominant guilds, accounting for 54.0% and 38.7% of all individuals respectively. The results of canonical correspondence analysis (CCA) clearly showed that most forest-dependent species were associated with high proportions of native canopy cover and the mean density of dead trees and large trees, which are characteristic of old-growth mature forests (horizontal heterogeneity) at stand level. Accordingly, conservation efforts should focus on the specialized requirements of the most habitat-restricted species in the future, especially for understory insectivores (Babblers) and large-tree users in mature subtropical monsoon forests of southern China. Moreover, since regenerating mixed forests are very similar to mature forests in both vegetation structure and bird community composition, we recommend that logging cycles (>50 years) be increased to a minimum of 50 years in southern China, so that a balance between economic and ecological interest can be reestablished. © 2011 Elsevier B.V.

Yuan L.,South China Institute of Endangered Animals
PloS one | Year: 2011

Heterothermy (hibernation and daily torpor) is a key strategy that animals use to survive in harsh conditions and is widely employed by bats, which are found in diverse habitats and climates. Bats comprise more than 20% of all mammals and although heterothermy occurs in divergent lineages of bats, suggesting it might be an ancestral condition, its evolutionary history is complicated by complex phylogeographic patterns. Here, we use Leptin, which regulates lipid metabolism and is crucial for thermogenesis of hibernators, as molecular marker and combine physiological, molecular and biochemical analyses to explore the possible evolutionary history of heterothermy in bat. The two tropical fruit bats examined here were homeothermic; in contrast, the two tropical insectivorous bats were clearly heterothermic. Molecular evolutionary analyses of the Leptin gene revealed positive selection in the ancestors of all bats, which was maintained or further enhanced the lineages comprising mostly heterothermic species. In contrast, we found evidence of relaxed selection in homeothermic species. Biochemical assays of bat Leptin on the activity on adipocyte degradation revealed that Leptin in heterothermic bats was more lipolytic than in homeothermic bats. This shows that evolutionary sequence changes in this protein are indeed functional and support the interpretation of our physiological results and the molecular evolutionary analyses. Our combined data strongly support the hypothesis that heterothermy is the ancestral state of bats and that this involved adaptive changes in Leptin. Subsequent loss of heterothermy in some tropical lineages of bats likely was associated with range and dietary shifts.

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