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Ultraviolet-B (UV-B) radiation has been increasing in temperate latitudes in recent decades and is expected to continue rising for some time. Enhanced UV-B radiation can change plant chemistry, yet the effects of these changes on mammalian herbivores are unknown. To examine the influence of enhanced UV-B radiation on nutrition of a specialist and generalist hindgut fermenter, we measured nutritional and chemical constituents of three common North American range plants, big sagebrush (Artemisia tridentata), yarrow (Achillea millefolium), and bluebunch wheatgrass (Pseudoregneria spicata), and how these changes influenced in vitro dry matter digestibility and in vivo digestibility by pygmy rabbits (Brachylagus idahoensis)...
1 Phenolics are an important, biologically reactive component of the carbon (C) pool that moves from plants to soil. Once in soil, phenolics can regulate plant?soil feedbacks because of their influence on soil nitrogen biogeochemistry. 2 Roots are a largely overlooked potential source of below-ground phenolic C. We examined phenolic fluxes from plants to soil in an alpine ecosystem, where phenolics are associated with slow rates of nutrient cycling. Using a phenolic-rich forb (Acomastylis rossii) and a grass with low tissue phenolics (Deschampsia caespitosa), we asked whether leaves, leaf litter or roots are the dominant source of soil phenolics during the growing season. We also determined whether the composition...
Ozone depletion has caused ultraviolet-B (UV-B) radiation to rise in temperate latitudes of both hemispheres. Enhanced UV-B radiation can affect plant nutritional chemistry, but the effects of these changes on mammalian herbivores are unknown. Therefore, we measured nutritional and chemical constituents of 18 forages and related changes to in vitro dry matter digestibility, and intake and in vivo digestibility of five of these plants by a ruminant herbivore (blue duiker, Cephalophus monticola) and a specialist (pygmy rabbit, Brachylagus idahoensis ) and generalist (eastern cottontail, Sylvilagus floridanus ) hindgut-fermenter. Forages were irradiated for three months with ambient (1X) or supplemental (1.6X) UV-B...