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Table of Content
    Volume 10 Issue 4
    20 November 2002
    Distribution of macrobenthos in spring and autumn in the East China Sea
    LIU LuSan, LI XinZheng
    Biodiv Sci. 2002, 10 (4):  351-358.  doi:10.17520/biods.2002049
    Abstract ( 2873 )   PDF (344KB) ( 3028 )   Save
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    This paper presents the results of ecological study of the macrobenthic fauna in the East China Sea in autumn and spring. The materials were collected from 30 stations located between 121°~127°E and 26°~32°N in November 2000 and April 2001. For quantitative analysis, samples were collected by 0.1 m2 box corer. Two successful grabs were regarded as one sample at a station. Samples were prepared by removing the mud and sand by whirlpool mud remover, filtering the specimens through a 0.1 mm sieve, and fixing them in 75% alcohol for small samples or 10% formalin for large. For   
    qualitative analysis, samples were collected with a 1.5 m width×0.5m height Agassiz trawl, effectively trawling for 15 minute at   
    2 knots speed, fixing the specimens as per the quantitative analysis. Biomass was measured by weighing the wet specimens with a 1/1000 gram precision electric balance. Altogether in the samples, 392 species of macrobenthos were identified, which belong respectively to Polychaeta, 95 species, Mollusca, 131 species, Crustacea, 118 species and Echinodermata, 48 species. Based upon the analysis of the data obtained during the survey, biomass of the macrobenthos averaged 7.21 g/m2 in spring and 8.79 in fall, and density averaged 132.95 individuals/m2 in spring and 101.45 in fall. There were no clear differences in density or distribution   
    of the macrobenthos between spring and fall. In autumn, some species migrate from shore and Changjiang Estuary to the Kuroshio Current. Compared with the benthos research results of “The comprehensive resource investigation of Chinese coast and shallow waters” (1958~1960) and the Survey of “Jinxing” Vessel (1975~1976) in the same region, the distribution pattern and the ecological characteris   
    tics of the macrobenthos have not changed dramatically, although the biomass in spring of 2001 was lower than that of 1959.
    Geographical distribution patterns of endangered fishes, amphibians, reptiles and mammals and their hotspots in China: a study based on “China Red Data Book of Endangered Animals”
    CHEN Yang, CHEN AnPing, FANG JingYun
    Biodiv Sci. 2002, 10 (4):  359-368.  doi:10.17520/biods.2002050
    Abstract ( 3860 )   PDF (961KB) ( 4011 )   Save
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    The “China Red Data Book of Endangered Animals” lists 535   
    endangered species in China according to their   
    conservation status,as well as describing their degree of threat, population size, threatening factors and approaches to conservation. Supported by GIS, a literature based analysis was carried out on the geographical distribution patterns of the endangered vertebrates in China (birds were excluded, but for simplification we refer to “endangered vertebrates” hereafter). The endangered vertebrates are distributed unevenly. The densest areas are located in Hengduan Mountains,Hainan Island,Xishuangbanna and the Yunnan-Guizhou Plateau. In contrast, the Northern China Plain, the eastern part of the Inner Mongolia Plateau, the Loess Plateau and the Northeast Plain lack endangered animals.   
    Topographical factor is key to the distributions of the endangered vertebrate species. Mountains are often habitats for many ancient species. Many species rely heavily on specific moisture and temperature conditions, which limit their distribution ranges. Human activity is another important factor that affects the present   
    geographical distributions of the endangered vertebrates. Those places with a long history of human exploitation   
    lack endangered vertebrates. Modern environmental problems such as pollution, and impoldering of wetlands also pose great threats to wildlife. A total of 168 endangered vertebrates, which accounts for 51.5% of all endangered vertebrates (excluding coastal species and species endemic to Taiwan and Hongkong) occur in nine counti   
    es comprising only 0.9% of China's terrestrial area. All endangered vertebrates can be found in just 94 counties, as revealed by the algorithm based on the principle of complementary used by Dobson et al .(1997).
    Feasibility of reintroducing Pè re David′s deer (Elaphurus davidianus) to the Dongting Lake region, Hunan Province
    YANG Dao-De, JIANG Zhi-Gang, CAO Tie-Ru, WEN Shi-Zhi, ZHAO Ke-Jin, GUI Xia-Jie, XU Yong-Xin
    Biodiv Sci. 2002, 10 (4):  369-375.  doi:10.17520/biods.2002051
    Abstract ( 3300 )   PDF (506KB) ( 2881 )   Save
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    The wetlands around the Dongting Lake were inhabited by Père David′s deer before its extinction in the wild. In preparation to restore a wild Père David′s deer populations in the Dongting Lake region, we inspected the Père David′s deer populations in the Tianezhou Reserve, Beijing Milu Park and Dafeng Milu Nature Reserve. We studied the available wetlands in the Yueyang Municipality, Changde Municipality and Yiyang Municipality, and selected Julinyuan of Hanshou County, Changde Municipality and Jichengyuan of the Huarong County, Yueyang Municipality as a potential reintroduction site for Père David′s deer. We studied the vegetations and sampled above ground biomass of plant in the two sites. We found the natural environments in Julinyuan and Jichengyuan similar to that of the Tianezhou Reserve. There are three Vegetation Type Groups and vascular plant of 75 families, 189 genera and 264 species in Jichengyuan. The habitat available for reintroduction of Père David′s deer in Jichengyuan is 2000 hectare, which can provide the reintroduced deer with 21158.4 tons of fresh plants, enough to support 1000 Père David′s deers. The natural vegetation rapidly recovered after the lands were abandoned and designated for wetland restoration. There are also three Vegetation Type Groups and vascular plants of 75 families, 189 genera and more than 200 species in Julinyuan. The habitat available for reintroduction of Père David′s deer in Julinyuan is 1703.1 hect are, which can provide reintroduced deer with 18 859.0 tons of fresh plants, enough to support 850 Père David′s deers. Judged by the climate, food resources and environmental carrying capacity,  Julinyuan and Jichengyuan are both suitable for reintroduction of Père David′s deer. We also discuss the human assisted survival strategies for Père David′s deer, such as guarantee living space, diseases prevention, habitat restoration, and population and habitat monitoring.
    Allozymic variation and genetic diversity in Malus hupehensis (Rosaceae)
    KANG Ming, HUANG Hong-Wen
    Biodiv Sci. 2002, 10 (4):  376-385.  doi:10.17520/biods.2002052
    Abstract ( 2932 )   PDF (586KB) ( 2675 )   Save
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    Allozymic variation and genetic diversity were evaluated among nine wild and two cultivated populations of Malus hupehensis using isoelectric focusing in thin layer polyacrylamide slab gels. Twentynine loci of 12 enzyme systems were detected and used for population genetic analysis, revealing that the distribution of allele frequencies of 25 loci were significant at P ≤0.01.Nineteen locally rare alleles were found in 10 populations sampled in the study. Of 29 loci, 11 (37.9%) were duplicate loci. A high level of genetic diversity was detected in M. hupehensis , with mean number of alleles per locus A =2.127, percentage of polymorphic loci P =74.927, and mean expected heterozygosity He =0.376. The relative magnitude of differentiation among populations is significantly higher than those of other long lived woody plants ( GST =0.224). Compared with other Malus spp., this species has a moderate level of genetic variability. Gene flow among populations is only Nm =0.866, suggesting that gene drift plays an important role in influencing genetic variation and determining genetic structure.
    Diversity of rodents communities in different habitats in Hexi Corridor, Gansu Province
    SONG Yan-Ling, LI Jun-Sheng, ZENG Zhi-Gao, ZHANG Jin-Sheng
    Biodiv Sci. 2002, 10 (4):  386-392.  doi:10.17520/biods.2002053
    Abstract ( 2774 )   PDF (258KB) ( 2273 )   Save
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    Species diversity of rodents is a good index to analyze local environmental change, since rodents have not only the ability to adapt to a wide range of habitats but also are sensitive to environmental changes. In order to understand the influence of habitat types on rodent diversity, the species composition and diversity of rodent communities in six different habitats in Hexi Corridor were studied. Field work was carried out from July to August, 2001. Rodents (<200 g ) were sampled with 2-dimensional grids in all habitats. Average distance between grids was 100 m. One hundred snap traps were set for for two days in each sample line with 5 m spacing. A total of 5320 trap nights were operated in six habitats. Traps were baited in the afternoon with peanuts and were checked the next morning. Thirteen species of rodents among 354 individuals were collected, belonging to six families (or subfamilies) and nine genera. Species associated with palaercitic fauna dominated the community. The result of diversity analysis shows that the values of the species richness index RMargalef for the six habitats ranged from 0.6139 to 1.9689, while the species diversity index (Shannon Wiener index) ranged from 1.0695 to 1.5607, and Pielou and Simpson indices ranged from 0.7242 to 0.9735 and from 0.2768 to 0.4683, respectively. The tendency of diversity, including N1 and the Shannon Wiener index, was for similarity in all six habitats, while the tendency of N2 was such that habitats of semi desert brush > habitats of mountainous grassland > habitats of desert > habitats of cultivated fields > habitats of forest > habitats of semi desert mountain brush. Precipitation was the major restricted factor that directly influenced species composition and diversity for the rodent community in these habitats. Latitude and human disturbance also affect species composition of the rodent community.
    Effects of farming practices in Tibet on wintering Black necked Crane ( Grus nigricollis ) diet and food availability
    Mary Anne Bishop, Li FengShan
    Biodiv Sci. 2002, 10 (4):  393-398.  doi:10.17520/biods.2002054
    Abstract ( 3166 )   PDF (245KB) ( 2425 )   Save
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    We studied the availability of cereal grains as food resources for win tering Black-necked Cranes in south-central Tibet Autonomous Region, People's Republic of China during January 1996. Barley, spring wheat, and winter wheat were the three major crops. Fecal samples revealed that Black necked cranes fed extensively on waste cereal grain, especially wheat. Winter wheat seedlings comprised only a minor portion of the crane diet. Post-harvest farming practices including plowing and livestock grazing influenced surface residue cover (seeds, leaves, stems, or roots) and waste cereal grain (kernels, spikelets, or chaffy bracts) available for cranes. Plowing buried most crop residue. In unplowed fields, proportion of waste grain residue cover was similar in harvested barley and harvested wheat fields. Harvested wheat produced the greatest density of surface waste grain. We recommend providing unplowed, harvested wheat and harvested barley fields near rivers and cultivating winter wheat closer to primary roads in order to maximize grain availability and minimize potential disturbance to wintering Black necked Cranes.
    A strategy for ecosystem conservation based on function and spatial pattern
    GUO Zhong-Wei, GAN Ya-Ling
    Biodiv Sci. 2002, 10 (4):  399-408.  doi:10.17520/biods.2002055
    Abstract ( 3094 )   PDF (738KB) ( 2422 )   Save
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    Using Xingshan County of Hubei Province as a case study, we discussed a strategy for ecosystem conservation based on functions and spatial pattern. The strategy uses the improvement of ecosystem functions as appreciation indices, and the regulation of the spatial pattern of ecological factors as an approach. Here, the ecosystem function for water retention was considered as an appreciation index, due to this county's locatation in the watershed of the Yangtze River. The county was divided into 90 types of vegetation soil slope complexes. A GIS embodied spatial database was used to explore the relationships between the capacity of water retention by a complex and the types of vegetation, soil and slope. We estimated statistically the capacity of water retention of every complex, and evaluated integrally the situation of water retention in the county. The variation location effect describes the phenomenon that the identical variation of a factor may produce different effects on the overall situation, when this variation occurs in different spatial locations. This effect highlights the effect of the spatial patterns of biological and physical factors as well as their combinations to produce ecosystem functions. According to this effect, we can discuss spatially the quantitative variations of ecological factors and the effects of these variations on the overall ecosystem. By this means “quantity” and “space” are integrated. In this study, according to this effect, we changed the situation of water retention in the watershed by regulating the combination of vegetation, soil and slope. The strategy of “spatial pattern based forestland extension” is based solely upon the variation location effect. This study shows that greater benefit of water retention in the watershed can be obtained from the extension of forestland by using this strategy. Likewise, applying this strategy in the establishment of a protective forest system in the Yangtze River basin, the situation of water retention in this basin can also be greatly improved, and people can derive more benefit from water and soil conservation. The variation location effect is of universal significance and useful for ecosystem restoration, conservation and management. The terrestrial ecosystems in many regions are undergoing great changes, and, as consequences, ecosystem functions will be weakened. The conservation and restoration of these ecosystems will be critical problems people must face. Our research work may be an essential step to the restoration of the ecosystem functionality in these regions.
    The current status and perspectives of on farm conservation of crop genetic diversity
    LU BaoRong, ZHU YouYong, WANG YunYue
    Biodiv Sci. 2002, 10 (4):  409-415.  doi:10.17520/biods.2002056
    Abstract ( 3674 )   PDF (228KB) ( 2793 )   Save
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    Effective conservation of traditional crop varieties is the basis of the long-term utilization of agricultural biodiversity, and will be one of the essential factors for the sustainable development of agriculture. Due to the intensive production practices in modern agriculture, a great number of traditional crop varieties have been rapidly replaced by the improved high-yielding varieties, which has caused severe “genetic erosion” in the genepool of crop species, and significantly reduced genetic diversity of crop varieties. It is therefore essential to preserve the shrinking crop biodiversity before it is completely lost. On-farm conservation is an important and dynamic in situ conservation method that conserves crop varieties in agricultural ecosystems. On-farm conservation can be defined as the continued cultivation and management of a diverse set of crop populations by farmers in the agro-ecosystems where a crophas evolved, and it allows the evolution of conserved crop varieties to be continued in their original habitats. However, in spite of the increasing interests in this method and a relatively large number of research and case studies reported in this field, there has been no significant achievement for on-farm conservation and many questions remain unanswered: Is on-farm conservation practical and achievable? Can on-farm conservation actually be conducted in modern agriculture? Is on-farm conservation a trade-off with agricultural development? What are the scientific issues for on-farm conservation? What incentives can their be for farmers to conserve genetic diversity in their farming ecosystems? All these questions need to be addressed scientifically with satisfaction when conducting effective on-farm conservation. It is therefore necessary to have a better understanding of on-farm conservation, to study mechanisms and scientific basis of on-farm conservation, and to be innovative to open a new dimension for on-farm conservation action. The biodiverse deployment of rice varieties, mixed planting of modern hybrid rice with traditional rice varieties in Yunnan Province, not only provided an excellent method of controlling rice disease and increasing rice productivity, but also demonstrated a powerful model for conserving traditional rice varieties in an effective and sustainable way. This model of mixed planting of a diverse set of crop varieties links farmer's long term benefit, socioeconomic concerns, and the actual conditions of locally based agro ecosystems appropriately with conservation activities. This model of using biodiversity to preserve biodiversity of crop varieties is a long term approach that will be sustainable and beneficial to farmers whose general living standard will be raised. It might provide possible solution for on-farm conservation of traditional rice varieties in a feasible and sustainable way., and probably has potential for other crop species, too.
    Biodiversity of Chinese Icefishes (Salangidae) and their conserving strategies
    WANG ZhongSuo, FU CuiZhang, LEI GuangChun
    Biodiv Sci. 2002, 10 (4):  416-424.  doi:10.17520/biods.2002057
    Abstract ( 3266 )   PDF (303KB) ( 2868 )   Save
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    Icefishes (Salangidae) originated in the Chinese Yellow Sea, and are distributed in eastern Asia. Fifteen out of the 17 global icefish species live in China's coastal area, outflow rivers and estuaries, among which six are endemic to China. The endemic icefishes include Neosalanx oligodontis, N. taihuensis, N. pseudotaihuensis, N. tangkahkeii, Hemisalanx brachyrostralis, and Salanx cuvieri. Among all the rivers that flow into the South China Sea, East Sea and Yellow Sea, the Yangtze River has been the most important one for this family, where 10 species live, including five species of freshwater icefishes. Icefishes have been appreciated as a highly nutritious food, and therefore have been a major economic resource in the Yangtze River basin. Icefishes have a wide range of food choices  among species, but are very sensitive to their environments,and they develop quickly, with short life cycles, with discrete generations, high fecundity, and wide population fluctuations, and therefore, they are typical r-strategy species. However, due to habitat destruction (wetland reclamation), and fragmentation (dyking), over fishing, and environmental pollution, icefish biodiversity have been declining, and some species have even become vulnerable to extinction. Meanwhile, in the past decade, a few species have been widely introduced into large lakes and reservoirs in China, and have caused problems in the recipient freshwater ecosystem. Based on reviewing the current understanding of their biology, ecology and biodiversity, we present strategies for icefish conservation, and call for an evaluation of the current threats to their biodiversity, as well as of the ecological consequences of icefish introduction, and for strengthening of basic studies on ecology and biodiversity conservation of icefish.
    A comparison of dormancy and germination of seeds betweenan endangered species, Changium smyrnioides, and a non-endangered species, Anthriscus sylvestris
    YIN XianWei, CHANG Jie, GE Ying, GUAN BaoHua, FAN MeiYing, QIU YingXiong
    Biodiv Sci. 2002, 10 (4):  425-430.  doi:10.17520/biods.2002058
    Abstract ( 2812 )   PDF (225KB) ( 1957 )   Save
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    The dormancy and germination of seeds of an endangered species, Changium smyrnioides, and another non-endangered species, Anthriscus sylvestris , were studied under different storage conditions. The results showed that in natural condition, the seeds of C. smyrnioides had a dormancy stage for about five months, and that experimental low temperature (about 10℃) could break dormancy after 40 days of treatment. Seeds stored under natural temperature and dry condition could not break dormancy, while those stored under natural temperature and fluctuant moisture condition had the highest germination ratio, and their germination ability lasted for a longer time than any other treatments. The germination ratio of C. smyrnioides was higher than that of A. sylvestris, while the germination duration was shorter. Germination of seeds stored under natural temperature and saturated moisture conditions decreased markedly in both species, although in C. smyrnioides the germination could remain at 7%. Apparently, the quality and germination ability of seeds of C. smyrnioides is not the direct reason for its endangerment. The species follows a K-strategy, with the characteristics of a big seed grain, lower seed production, and few seedlings created. As a result, the population cannot be restored quickly when disturbed intensively and the species has a greater possibility of endangerment.
    Randomization tests and computational software on statistic significance of
    ZHANG WenJun, QI YanHong, Schoenly Kenneth George
    Biodiv Sci. 2002, 10 (4):  431-437.  doi:10.17520/biods.2002059
    Abstract ( 3089 )   PDF (302KB) ( 1917 )   Save
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    Diversity and evenness indices were widely used in community ecology and biodiversity researches. However, shortage of statistic tests on these indices restricted their reliability. To develop statistic test methods on diversity is one of the focuses in biodiversity researches. In present study, some randomization tests on statistic significance of diversity and evenness indices, confidence interval of diversity and evenness, and randomization test on statistic significance of between-community differences were presented. Shannon-Wiener diversity index, Simpson diversity index, McIntosh diversity index, Berger-Parker diversity index, Hurlbert diversity index, Brillouin diversity index, and corresponding evenness indices are included in the randomization test procedure. The web-based computational software for the statistic tests, BiodiversityTest , which is comprised of seven Java classes and an HTML file, is developed. It can be run on various operational systems and java-enabled web browsers and, may read ODBC linked databases such as MS Access, Excel, FoxPro, dBASE, etc. Rice arthropod diversity (15 sampling sites, 125 arthropod species, 17 functional groups) was recorded on September,1996 in IRRI rice farm using RiceVac apparatus and bucket enclosure. The data were analysed using BiodiversityTest with Shannon-Wiener index and Berger-Parker index respectively, and the results showed that the changes of diversity and evenness can be effectively detected by these tests. The randomization tests will correct the possible wrong conclusions aroused in direct comparison of arthropod diversity which was used in most of the researches up to now. The development of randomization tests on biodiversity will provide a quantitative tool for stricter statistic comparison of biodiversity between communities and present an absolute criterion fordiversity measuring. BiodiversityTest  will make the computation realistic and accessible on Internet.

    Data analysis in population genetics.I. analysis of RAPD data with AMOVA
    ZHANG Fu Min, GE Song
    Biodiv Sci. 2002, 10 (4):  438-444.  doi:10.17520/biods.2002060
    Abstract ( 4492 )   PDF (286KB) ( 2508 )   Save
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    Random Amplified Polymorphic DNA (RAPD) data have been increasingly used in studies on population and conservation genetics. Analysis of molecular variance (AMOVA) has become one of the important methods utilized in analysis of population genetic structure. Currently, WINAMOVA is the most popular software that is used for AMOVA analysis, and often runs together with RAPDistance, a software to calculate genetic distances. However,cautions should be taken when AMOVA analysis is used to process the RAPD data because of the dominant characteristic of RAPD marker and the limitation of RAPDistance. In this paper, we briefly introduce the principle and algorithm of AMOVA analysis and describe a new program, DCFA, that substitutes for RAPDistance. We also illustrate the processes of running the programs DCFA and WINAMOVA. In addition, we analyze eight Oryza rufipogon populations as an example to demonstrate how to process RAPD data with AMOVA, and discuss the results in light of population genetic structure. Finally, based on the comparison of four commonly used distance coefficients, we suggest that the coefficients of Euclidean squared distance and NEI-LI rather than JACCARD are suitable for analysis of molecular variance.

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