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Abstract (from http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0102996): Trees are essential to urban habitats because they provide services that benefit the environment and improve human health. Unfortunately, urban trees often have more herbivorous insect pests than rural trees but the mechanisms and consequences of these infestations are not well documented. Here, we examine how temperature affects the abundance of a scale insect, Melanaspis tenebricosa (Comstock) (Hemiptera: Diaspididae), on one of the most commonly planted street trees in the eastern U.S. Next, we examine how both pest abundance and temperature are associated with water stress, growth, and condition of 26 urban street trees....
Abstract (from http://www.plosone.org/article/info:doi/10.1371/journal.pone.0059687): Cities profoundly alter biological communities, favoring some species over others, though the mechanisms that govern these changes are largely unknown. Herbivorous arthropod pests are often more abundant in urban than in rural areas, and urban outbreaks have been attributed to reduced control by predators and parasitoids and to increased susceptibility of stressed urban plants. These hypotheses, however, leave many outbreaks unexplained and fail to predict variation in pest abundance within cities. Here we show that the abundance of a common insect pest is positively related to temperature even when controlling for other habitat...
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Herbivores transform landscapes and affect succession via selective foraging that alters vegetation composition. In the boreal forest, mammalian herbivores, mainly moose, facilitate a shift toward the dominance of heavily defended species over time, such as white spruce. The effects of moose herbivory are intensified by the browsing of snowshoe hares. However, unlike moose, snowshoe hares also browse seedlings of white spruce. We quantified herbivory by snowshoe hares on white spruce along the Tanana River, interior Alaska, and assessed the effects on white spruce demography via two different herbivore exclosure experiments. We hypothesized that both experiments would show reduced plant density and height growth...


    map background search result map search result map Stage-dependent effects of browsing by snowshoe hares on successional dynamics in a boreal forest ecosystem Stage-dependent effects of browsing by snowshoe hares on successional dynamics in a boreal forest ecosystem