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Keyword: DNA

Identifying predators from saliva at kill sites with limited remains

Publications Posted on: March 27, 2021
Kill‐site investigations can yield valuable data about elusive predators and predator–prey interactions, provided the predator species can be definitively identified as the one responsible for the predation event. The traditional method of visually analyzing prey remains to identify predators is prone to observer bias and may be particularly challenging when few remains are present or in systems with congeneric predators.

An Axiom SNP genotyping array for Douglas-fir

Publications Posted on: December 18, 2020
Background: In forest trees, genetic markers have been used to understand the genetic architecture of natural populations, identify quantitative trait loci, infer gene function, and enhance tree breeding. Recently, new, efficient technologies for genotyping thousands to millions of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) have finally made large-scale use of genetic markers widely available.

Observation and DNA confirmation of a fisher (Pekania pennanti) hunting and killing a muskrat (Ondatra zibethicus)

Publications Posted on: December 11, 2020
Pekania pennanti (Fisher) is a generalist mesocarnivore that has been documented to prey on a diversity of mammals, but there have been no previous documented incidents of a Fisher hunting and killing a semi-aquatic mammal. Here, we report a first-hand observation and DNA evidence of a Fisher hunting and killing an Ondatra zibethicus (Muskrat) from inside a beaver lodge along a lakeshore.

Toward DNA-based and bioclimatic modeling tools to identify Armillaria pathogens, predict host/pathogen distributions, and manage Armillaria root disease in the Intermountain Region under changing environments

Publications Posted on: September 30, 2020
Armillaria root disease is one of the leading causes of growth loss and mortality in coniferous forests of the western USA (Lockman & Kearns 2016). Recent surveys suggest Armillaria root disease is increasing on trees in Utah (John Guyon, per. comm.).

Exploiting the winter trophic relationship between weasels (Mustela spp.) and their microtine prey as a survey method for weasels in meadow ecosystems

Publications Posted on: July 02, 2020
Weasels can be important components of grassland and meadow communities where they influence the dynamics of small mammal populations which, in turn, can be keystone species in these communities. We evaluate a method for detecting and identifying two species of North American mustelines (i.e., Mustela frenata and M. erminea) in mountain meadow systems.

qPCR detection of Sturgeon chub (Macrhybopsis gelida) DNA in environmental samples

Publications Posted on: April 05, 2019
The Sturgeon chub (Macrhybopsis gelida) is a cyprinid fish native to the Missouri and Mississippi River basins of the U.S. Suspected long-term declines in the size of its distribution have prompted a review of its conservation status by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, a process which depends on reliable methods to delineate the distribution and status of extant populations.

A new way to look at winter footprints

FS News Posted on: November 26, 2018
An innovative new project has discovered that animal footprints contain enough DNA to allow for species identification. Scientists have traditionally relied on snow-tracks and camera traps to monitor populations of rare carnivores, like Canada lynx, fishers and wolverines. These traditional techniques can tell part of, but not the entire story of an animal population, and are sometimes difficult to validate species identification. 

Toward a west-wide model of Armillaria root disease: New surveys needed in western Oregon, western Washington, and Alaska

Publications Posted on: December 12, 2017
Currently, Armillaria root disease causes large growth/volume losses (e.g., 16-55%) in areas of western North America (Filip and Goheen 1984; Cruickshank 2011; Lockman and Kearns 2016). Armillaria root disease is typically more severe in trees that are maladapted to climate-induced stress (Ayres and Lombardero 2000; Kliejunas et al. 2009; Sturrock 2011).

Scat-detection dogs survey low density moose in New York

Publications Posted on: November 18, 2016
The difficulty of collecting occurrence and population dynamics data in mammalian populations of low density poses challenges for making informed management decisions. We assessed the use of scat-detection dogs to search for fecal pellets in a low density moose (Alces alces) population in the Adirondack Park in New York State, and the success rate of DNA extraction from moose fecal pellets collected during the surveys.

Quantitative PCR assays for detecting loach minnow (Rhinichthys cobitis) and spikedace (Meda fulgida) in the southwestern United States

Publications Posted on: September 12, 2016
Loach minnow (Rhinichthys cobitis) and spikedace (Meda fulgida) are legally protected with the status of Endangered under the U.S. Endangered Species Act and are endemic to the Gila River basin of Arizona and New Mexico. Efficient and sensitive methods for monitoring these species’ distributions are critical for prioritizing conservation efforts.