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22 Apr 2024 at 01:46
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Bibliography on: Hoopoes


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Wikipedia: Hoopoes are colourful birds found across Afro-Eurasia, notable for their distinctive "crown" of feathers. Three living and one extinct species are recognized, though for many years all were lumped as a single species — Upupa epops. Formerly considered a single species, the hoopoe has been split into three separate species: the Eurasian hoopoe, Madagascan hoopoe and the resident African hoopoe. One accepted separate species, the Saint Helena hoopoe, lived on the island of St Helena but became extinct in the 16th century. Hoopoes are distinctive birds and have made a cultural impact over much of their range. They were considered sacred in Ancient Egypt, and were "depicted on the walls of tombs and temples". At the Old Kingdom, the hoopoe was used in the iconography as a symbolic code to indicate the child was the heir and successor of his father. They achieved a similar standing in Minoan Crete. In the Torah, Leviticus 11:13-19, hoopoes were listed among the animals that are detestable and should not be eaten. They are also listed in Deuteronomy as not kosher. Hoopoes also appear in the Quran and is known as the "hudhud", in Surah Al-Naml 27:20-22: "And he Solomon sought among the birds and said: How is it that I see not the hoopoe, or is he among the absent? I verily will punish him with hard punishment or I verily will slay him, or he verily shall bring me a plain excuse. But he [the hoopoe] was not long in coming, and he said: I have found out (a thing) that thou apprehendest not, and I come unto thee from Sheba with sure tidings." The sacredness of the Hoopoe and connection with Solomon and the Queen of Sheba is mentioned in passing in Rudyard Kipling's "The Butterfly that Stamped." Islamic literature also states that a hoopoe saved Moses and the children of Israel from being crushed by the giant Og after crossing the Red Sea. The hoopoe is the king of the birds in the Ancient Greek comedy The Birds by Aristophanes. Hoopoes have well-developed anti-predator defences in the nest. The uropygial gland of the incubating and brooding female is quickly modified to produce a foul-smelling liquid, and the glands of nestlings do so as well. These secretions are rubbed into the plumage. The secretion, which smells like rotting meat, is thought to help deter predators, as well as deter parasites and possibly act as an antibacterial agent. The secretions stop soon before the young leave the nest. From the age of six days, nestlings can also direct streams of faeces at intruders, and will hiss at them in a snake-like fashion.

Created with PubMed® Query: hoopoe OR upupa NOT pmcbook NOT ispreviousversion

Citations The Papers (from PubMed®)


RevDate: 2024-03-15

Barón MD, Martín-Vivaldi M, Martínez-Renau E, et al (2024)

Extra Nestlings That Are Condemned to Die Increase Reproductive Success in Hoopoes.

The American naturalist, 203(4):503-512.

AbstractThe adaptive value of routinely laying more eggs than can be successfully fledged has intrigued evolutionary biologists for decades. Extra eggs could, for instance, be adaptive as insurance against hatching failures. Moreover, because recent literature demonstrates that sibling cannibalism is frequent in the Eurasian hoopoe (Upupa epops), producing extra offspring that may be cannibalized by older siblings might also be adaptive in birds. Here, directed to explore this possibility in hoopoes, we performed a food supplementation experiment during the laying period and a clutch size manipulation during the hatching stage. We found that females with the food supplement laid on average one more egg than control females and that the addition of a close-to-hatch egg at the end of the hatching period increased the intensity of sibling cannibalism and enhanced fledging success in hoopoe nests. Because none of the extra nestlings from the experimental extra eggs survived until fledging, these results strongly suggest that hoopoes obtain fitness advantages by using temporarily abundant resources to produce additional nestlings that will be cannibalized. These results therefore suppose the first experimental demonstration of the nutritive adaptive function of laying extra eggs in vertebrates with parental care.

RevDate: 2023-11-16

Ferrer-Pereira P, Martínez-Renau E, Martín-Vivaldi M, et al (2023)

Food supply and provisioning behavior of parents: Are small hoopoe nestlings condemned to die?.

Behavioral ecology : official journal of the International Society for Behavioral Ecology, 34(6):992-1001 pii:arad067.

Parents might use signals of need or of quality to decide food provisioning among their offspring, while the use of one or another signal might depend on food availability. Begging success of nestlings of different quality (i.e., body size) would also depend on food availability, and we here explore the effect of experimental food supply in begging success of nestlings and in provisioning of female hoopoes (Upupa epops), a species with extreme hatching asynchrony and nestlings size hierarchy. We video-recorded food allocation of females, begging success of nestlings of different size, and the social context (i.e., the size category of the other nestlings that were begging for food) during periods when experimental food supply was or was not available in the same nests. We found that when experimental food supplementation was present, begging success of the intermediate, but not that of large or small-sized nestlings, increased. The experiment, however, did not affect the feeding preferences of females toward nestlings of different size. Moreover, when small nestlings were the only ones that were begging for food, their begging success decreased in the experimental period, and females used supplemented prey to feed themselves. Those results, on one hand, confirm the importance of food availability for the begging success of nestlings of particular sizes and, on the other, indicate that females prefer to use extra food for their own rather than for the smallest nestlings. We discuss possible mechanisms explaining the detected experimental effects and the adaptive and nonadaptive explanations of mothers ignoring the small nestlings.

RevDate: 2023-03-10
CmpDate: 2023-02-07

Sarmiento-Vizcaíno A, García LA, G Blanco (2023)

Streptomyces isolated from bird feathers as a potential source for novel antibiotics.

Archives of microbiology, 205(3):81.

Streptomyces, the main source of antibiotics essential for human health, are widely distributed in nature among terrestrial, oceanic and atmospheric environments. New trends in antibiotic discovery are focused in the search for novel bioactive strains in unexplored habitats. We provide here evidence of the presence of diverse Streptomyces populations in wild bird feathers, such as the seagull, Larus michahellis, collected at Northern Spain; the sparrow, Passer domesticus, and the hoopoe, Upupa epops, both collected in Southern Spain. Taxonomic identification of fourteen bioactive strains, by sequencing their 16S rRNA gene and phylogenetic analyses, revealed that all of them are homologous to a total of 10 different Streptomyces. Strains from seagull samples are homologous to other antibiotic producers previously isolated from atmospheric, marine and terrestrial environments in the Cantabrian Sea region, Northern Spain. Isolates form Southern feather samples, from a house sparrow and a Eurasian hoopoe, are homologues to Streptomyces strains previously isolated mainly from soils along the Mediterranean region. The most relevant feature is that they are producers of diverse antibiotics with activity against Gram-positive, Gram-negative bacteria and fungi. We report here the successful activation of silent antibiotic biosynthetic pathways in response to changes in environmental conditions, such as incubation temperature and salinity of the culture medium, in agreement with the OSMAC approach, One Strain Many Compounds. The finding of bioactive Streptomyces in bird's plumage might be of relevance, not only in the ecology of Streptomyces-birds associations, but also in medicine and biotechnology since they can be regarded as a potential source for novel antibiotics.

RevDate: 2022-11-15
CmpDate: 2022-11-15

Al-Nefeiy FA, Shawki NA, FA Mahmoud (2022)

Morphological and functional relationship between the orbital gland and olfaction in Upupa epops (hoopoe) and Bubulcus ibis (cattle egret).

Anatomia, histologia, embryologia, 51(6):793-801.

This study used both anatomical and histological techniques to investigate the orbital gland's topographic relationship with the surrounding system, using the hoopoe and cattle egret as biological models. Hoopoe has a spindle-shaped lacrimal gland that is suspended on the lateral edge of the frontal bone, whereas cattle egret has a tiny lacrimal gland that is embedded posteriorly within the periorbital fascia. The hoopoe's lacrimal gland has a single duct that runs parallel to the nasolacrimal duct and opens into the posterior nostril hole. In the cattle egret, the tubule-alveolar secretory components comprise neutral and acid glycosaminoglycan. In addition, the Harderian gland is found in both these species, but their draining ducts differ; the Harderian gland of the hoopoe opens into the anterodorsal to the conjunctival fornix, whereas the Harderian gland of the egret opens anteriorly. In both hoopoe and egret, the secretions of Harderian gland include neutral and acid glycosaminoglycan. The Harderian gland is categorized as type II in hoopoe and type I in cattle egrets. The present results concluded that both orbital glands of two bird species studied play an essential role in eye health, where cleaning and lubrication of the cornea surface. Furthermore, the lacrimal gland's location and secretory features may strengthen the olfactory sensitivity of hoopoe, which relies heavily on scent to locate their food, whereas egret relies heavily on visual cues.

RevDate: 2022-07-29

Tahir R, Zafar W, Aslam MW, et al (2022)

Morphometric parameters and food preference in relation to sex and reference hematological values for Upupa epops from Pakistan.

Journal of advanced veterinary and animal research, 9(2):290-294.

OBJECTIVE: The study was conducted to investigate the gut content and record morphometric and hematological parameters in the common hoopoe (Upupa epops).

MATERIALS AND METHODS: Twenty samples of healthy birds (10 from each sex) were collected from different locations in Okara District, Punjab, Pakistan, from September 2020 to March 2021. Birds were captured live for blood samples and morphometric and gut analyses.

RESULTS: It was revealed that the concentrations of different hematological parameters were as follows: hemoglobin, 20.03g/dl; red blood cells, 3.28 × 106/µl; white blood cells, 326.67 × 103/µl; hematocrit, 56.47%; MCV, 173.33 FL; MCH, 57.4 pg; MCHC, 57.4 pg; PLT, 8.33/µl; and RDW, 8.33/µl. The percentages of neutrophils, lymphocytes, monocytes, and eosinophils were 84.67%, 11.67%, 2.00%, and 1.67%, respectively. The gut content of the common hoopoe mostly consisted of Coleoptera and Acrididae larvae. However, Lepidoptera, Gryllotalpidae, and sand were also recorded, along with seeds of Salvadora persica.

CONCLUSIONS: There were no significant differences between male and female U. epops in feeding content, total weight of the gut, or weight of the empty gut. Regarding the morphometric parameters, there was a significant difference in both sexes' wingspan, body length, and body weight. Males were significantly heavier than females.

RevDate: 2023-04-18
CmpDate: 2023-04-18

Kikawada T, Araki Y, T Okamoto (2023)

Anterior ethmoid and frontal sinus drainage pathways: five patterns formed and defined by their bony walls.

European archives of oto-rhino-laryngology : official journal of the European Federation of Oto-Rhino-Laryngological Societies (EUFOS) : affiliated with the German Society for Oto-Rhino-Laryngology - Head and Neck Surgery, 280(1):199-206.

PURPOSE: To perform endoscopic sinus surgery safely and effectively, surgeons need to visualize the complex anatomy of the anterior ethmoid and frontal sinus region. Because this anatomy is so variable and individualized, the foundation of understanding lies in identifying, following, and visualizing the drainage pathway patterns and anticipating possible variations.

METHODS: We studied 100 sides (50 cases: 22 male, 28 female, aged 12-86, average age 46.5 years, ± 19.5) using computed tomography (CT) and multiplanar reconstruction (MPR) to identify and classify the drainage pathways leading to the frontal sinus and anterior ethmoidal cells.

RESULTS: Analysis revealed five patterns of drainage pathways defined by their bony walls: between the uncinate process and the lamina papyracea [UP-LP]; between the uncinate process and the middle turbinate [UP-MT]; between the uncinate process and the accessory uncinate process [UP-UPa]; between the uncinate process and the basal lamella of the ethmoidal bulla [UP-BLEB]; and between the basal lamella of the ethmoidal bulla and the basal lamella of the middle turbinate [BLEB-BLMT]. In most cases, BLEB formed the posterior wall of the drainage pathway of the frontal sinus, indicating BLEB could be one of the most important landmarks for approaching the frontal sinus.

CONCLUSIONS: As endoscopic sinus surgery depends on an understanding of this anatomy, this study may help surgeons to identify and follow the drainage pathways more accurately and safely through the anterior ethmoid to the frontal sinus.

RevDate: 2022-08-24
CmpDate: 2022-08-23

Malvandi H, MH Shamabadi (2022)

Use of Feathers from Birds that Collided with Vehicles to Monitor Heavy Metal Contamination in Western Khorasan Razavi, Iran.

Bulletin of environmental contamination and toxicology, 109(3):495-501.

In the present study, lead, zinc and copper concentrations in the feathers of Common kestrel (Falco tinnunculus), Eurasian magpie (Pica pica), Common buzzard (Buteo buteo), Crested lark (Galerida cristata), Eurasian hoopoe (Upupa epops), Little owl (Athene noctua), Long-eared owl (Asio otus), Eurasian eagle-owl (Bubo bubo) and Long-legged buzzard (Buteo rufinus) from Sabzevar and Neghab, Khorasan Razavi of Iran were measured. Almost all of the specimens were obtained from birds that had collided with vehicles or were unable to fly. There were no significant differences in metal concentrations between adult and juvenile, diurnal and nocturnal raptors and species with different diets. Elemental concentrations were lower than toxicity threshold values, so exposure to these elements does not appear to pose a health risk to the studied species. It should be noted that this study was the first study of metals in Galerida cristata, Asio otus and Buteo rufinus.

RevDate: 2022-11-30
CmpDate: 2022-09-23

Yeung KA, Chai PR, Russell BL, et al (2022)

Avian Toxins and Poisoning Mechanisms.

Journal of medical toxicology : official journal of the American College of Medical Toxicology, 18(4):321-333.

All around the world, there are species of birds that have developed the ability to acquire toxic chemicals in their bodies making them less palatable or even lethal when consumed or contacted. Exposure to poisonous bird species is rare among humans, yet their poisons can produce serious clinical outcomes. In this study, we conducted a literature search focusing on seven avian species: the pitohuis (Pitohui spp.), blue-capped ifrita (Ifrita kowaldi), European quail (Cortunix corturnix coturnix), spur or spoor-winged goose (Plectropterus gambensis), North American ruffed grouse (Bonasa umbellus), Brush bronzewings (Phaps elegans), and European hoopoes and woodhoopoes (Upupa epops and Phoeniculus purpureus, respectively). We present the geographic distribution of each poisonous bird, toxin physiology and origin, clinical signs and symptoms of poisoning, cases of human toxicity if available and discuss the birds' ability to prevent self-intoxication. Our results suggest that most cases of contact with toxic birds produce mild symptoms as most of these birds apart from the European quail (C. c. corturnix) and North American ruffed grouse (B. umbellus) are not commonly consumed by humans. Furthermore, we discuss several methods of toxin acquisition in these bird species, which are mostly diet acquired apart from the hoopoes and woodhoopoes (Upupa and Phoeniculus spp.) who have a symbiotic relationship with chemical-producing bacteria in their uropygial glands. In summary, our study provides a comprehensive review of the toxic physiology, clinical manifestations, and evolutionary insight to avian toxins.

RevDate: 2022-10-25
CmpDate: 2022-10-14

Santibáñez-López CE, Aharon S, Ballesteros JA, et al (2022)

Phylogenomics of Scorpions Reveal Contemporaneous Diversification of Scorpion Mammalian Predators and Mammal-Active Sodium Channel Toxins.

Systematic biology, 71(6):1281-1289.

Scorpions constitute a charismatic lineage of arthropods and comprise more than 2500 described species. Found throughout various tropical and temperate habitats, these predatory arachnids have a long evolutionary history, with a fossil record that began in the Silurian. While all scorpions are venomous, the asymmetrically diverse family Buthidae harbors nearly half the diversity of extant scorpions, and all but one of the 58 species that are medically significant to humans. However, the lack of a densely sampled scorpion phylogeny has hindered broader inferences of the diversification dynamics of scorpion toxins. To redress this gap, we assembled a phylogenomic data set of 100 scorpion venom gland transcriptomes and genomes, emphasizing the sampling of highly toxic buthid genera. To infer divergence times of venom gene families, we applied a phylogenomic node dating approach for the species tree in tandem with phylostratigraphic bracketing to estimate the minimum ages of mammal-specific toxins. Our analyses establish a robustly supported phylogeny of scorpions, particularly with regard to relationships between medically significant taxa. Analysis of venom gene families shows that mammal-active sodium channel toxins (NaTx) have independently evolved in five lineages within Buthidae. Temporal windows of mammal-targeting toxin origins are correlated with the basal diversification of major scorpion mammal predators such as shrews, bats, and rodents. These results suggest an evolutionary model of relatively recent diversification of buthid NaTx homologs in response to the diversification of scorpion predators. [Adaptation; arachnids; phylogenomic dating; phylostratigraphy; venom.].

RevDate: 2022-03-19
CmpDate: 2022-03-04

Soler JJ, Martín-Vivaldi M, Nuhlíčková S, et al (2022)

Avian sibling cannibalism: Hoopoe mothers regularly use their last hatched nestlings to feed older siblings.

Zoological research, 43(2):265-274.

Sibling cannibalism is relatively common in nature, but its evolution in birds and certain other vertebrates with extended parental care had been discarded. Here, however, we demonstrate its regular occurrence in two European populations of the Eurasian hoopoe (Upupa epops) and explore possible adaptive and non-adaptive explanations. Results showed that sibling cannibalism was more frequently detected in Spain (51.7%) than in Austria (5.9%). In these two populations, the hoopoes laid similar clutch sizes, resulting in similar fledging production, but hatching failures were more frequent in the northern population. Consequently, having more nestlings condemned to die in the southern population may explain the higher incidence of sibling cannibalism. In accordance with this interpretation, hatching span and failure, but not breeding date, explained the probability of sibling cannibalism in the Spanish hoopoes, while all three variables predicted brood reduction intensity. Furthermore, experimental food supply reduced the probability of sibling cannibalism, but not the intensity of brood reduction. Finally, females allocated fewer resources to the smallest nestlings when they were going to starve, but not necessarily when they were going to be used as food for their siblings. These results suggest that hoopoes produce extra eggs that, in the case of reduced hatching failure and food scarcity, produce nestlings that are used to feed older siblings. These findings provide the first evidence that sibling cannibalism occurs regularly in a bird species, thus expanding our evolutionary understanding of clutch size, hatching asynchrony, parent-offspring conflict, infanticide, and sibling cannibalism in the animal kingdom.

RevDate: 2022-01-28

Gavish-Regev E, Armiach Steinpress I, Salman INA, et al (2022)

Five-Year Monitoring of a Desert Burrow-Dwelling Spider Following an Environmental Disaster Indicates Long-Term Impacts.

Insects, 13(1):.

Deserts are characterized by unpredictable precipitation and extreme temperatures. Their fauna and flora are sensitive to anthropogenic environmental changes, and often recover slowly from environmental disasters. The effects of oil spills on the biota of desert regions, however, have scarcely been studied. We predicted that terrestrial invertebrates suffer long-term negative effects from an oil spill, due to their close association with the substrate. Thus, we investigated the effects of two oil spills that occurred in 1975 and 2014 in the hyper-arid 'Arava desert (Israel), on a spider that constructs silk-lined nests in burrows in compact, sandy soil in this extreme desert habitat. The spider, Sahastata aravaensis sp. nov. (Filistatidae), is described herein. We assessed spider burrow abundance in plots located in oil-contaminated and nearby uncontaminated clean soil (control) areas over five consecutive years and measured habitat characteristics in these plots. In the laboratory, we determined the preference of individuals for clean vs. oil-contaminated soil as a resting substrate. Finally, as this species was previously undescribed, we added a new species description. The abundance of Sahastata was significantly lower in oil-contaminated plots, and this was the case in the 40-year-old oil spill (1975) as well as in the recent one (2014). In laboratory tests, spiders showed a significant preference for the clean soil substrate over the oil-contaminated substrate. In the field, soil crust hardness and vegetation density did not differ significantly between oil-contaminated and control plots, but these measures were highly variable. The burrows were significantly clustered, suggesting that the young disperse only short distances. In the laboratory adult spiders did not dig burrows, perhaps indicating that adults remain permanently in their natal burrows and that in the field they may use vacant burrows. We conclude that Sahastata populations were affected negatively by the oil spills and these effects were long-lasting. We propose that by monitoring their spatial distribution, burrow-dwelling spiders such as Sahastata can be used as effective bioindicators of soil pollution in desert habitats.

RevDate: 2022-05-14
CmpDate: 2021-05-20

Díaz-Lora S, Pérez-Contreras T, Azcárate-García M, et al (2021)

Cosmetic coloration of cross-fostered eggs affects paternal investment in the hoopoe (Upupa epops).

Proceedings. Biological sciences, 288(1950):20203174.

The signalling hypothesis suggests that avian eggshell coloration is a sexually selected female signal advertising her quality to its male partner, thereby stimulating his provisioning rate. This hypothesis has been tested for structural eggshell pigments, but not for cosmetic colorations, such as that produced by the uropygial secretion on eggshells. During the breeding season, female hoopoes (Upupa epops) host in their uropygial glands symbiotic bacteria. Females actively smear the eggshells with their secretion, protecting embryos from pathogenic trans-shell infections and changing eggshell coloration. Because the colour of the secretions is related to their antimicrobial potential, cosmetic eggshell coloration may act as a cue or even as a post-mating sexually selected signal if it affects male provisioning rates. To experimentally test this hypothesis, we cross-fostered already-smeared clutches between hoopoe nests, and quantified male feeding behaviour to females before and after the experiment. This approach allows disentanglement of the effects of female quality and of egg coloration on male investment. In accordance with the hypothesis, males adjusted their provisioning rate to the eggshell cosmetic coloration. This is, to our knowledge, the first experimental demonstration that egg colour stained with uropygial secretion could act as a post-mating sexual signal of female quality to males.

RevDate: 2020-11-03

Mazorra-Alonso M, Martín-Vivaldi M, Peralta-Sánchez JM, et al (2020)

Autoclaving Nest-Material Remains Influences the Probability of Ectoparasitism of Nestling Hoopoes (Upupa epops).

Biology, 9(10):.

Nest bacterial environment influences avian reproduction directly because it might include pathogenic- or antibiotic-producing bacteria or indirectly because predators or ectoparasites can use volatile compounds from nest bacterial metabolism to detect nests of their avian hosts. Hoopoes (Upupa epops) do not build nests. They rather reuse holes or nest-boxes that contain remains of nest-materials from previous breeding seasons. Interestingly, it has been recently described that the nest's bacterial environment partly affects the uropygial gland microbiota of hoopoe females and eggshells. Blood-sucking ectoparasites use chemical cues to find host nests, so we experimentally tested the hypothetical effects of microorganisms inhabiting nest-material remains before reproduction regarding the intensity of ectoparasitism suffered by 8-day-old nestling hoopoes. In accordance with the hypothesis, nestlings hatched in nest-boxes with autoclaved nest-material remains from the previous reproductive seasons suffered less from ectoparasites than those hatched in the control nest-boxes with nonautoclaved nest-material. Moreover, we found a positive association between the bacterial density of nest-material during the nestling phase and ectoparasitism intensity that was only apparent in nest-boxes with autoclaved nest-material. However, contrary to our expectations, nest bacterial load was positively associated with fledgling success. These results suggest a link between the community of microorganisms of nest-material remains and the intensity of ectoparasitism, and, on the other hand, that the nest bacterial environment during reproduction is related to fledging success. Here, we discuss possible mechanisms explaining the experimental and correlative results, including the possibility that the experimental autoclaving of nest material affected the microbiota of females and nestlings' secretion and/or nest volatiles that attracted ectoparasites, therefore indirectly affecting both the nest bacterial environment at the nestling stage and fledging success.

RevDate: 2020-09-28

Plard F, Arlettaz R, Jacot A, et al (2020)

Disentangling the spatial and temporal causes of decline in a bird population.

Ecology and evolution, 10(14):6906-6918.

The difficulties in understanding the underlying reasons of a population decline lie in the typical short duration of field studies, the often too small size already reached by a declining population or the multitude of environmental factors that may influence population trend. In this difficult context, useful demographic tools such as integrated population models (IPM) may help disentangling the main reasons for a population decline. To understand why a hoopoe Upupa epops population has declined, we followed a three step model analysis. We built an IPM structured with respect to habitat quality (approximated by the expected availability of mole crickets, the main prey in our population) and estimated the contributions of habitat-specific demographic rates to population variation and decline. We quantified how much each demographic rate has decreased and investigated whether habitat quality influenced this decline. We tested how much weather conditions and research activities contributed to the decrease in the different demographic rates. The decline of the hoopoe population was mainly explained by a decrease in first-year apparent survival and a reduced number of fledglings produced, particularly in habitats of high quality. Since a majority of pairs bred in habitats of the highest quality, the decrease in the production of locally recruited yearlings in high-quality habitat was the main driver of the population decline despite a homogeneous drop of recruitment across habitats. Overall, the explanatory variables we tested only accounted for 19% of the decrease in the population growth rate. Among these variables, the effects of spring temperature (49% of the explained variance) contributed more to population decline than spring precipitation (36%) and research activities (maternal capture delay, 15%). This study shows the power of IPMs for identifying the vital rates involved in population declines and thus paves the way for targeted conservation and management actions.

RevDate: 2021-06-28
CmpDate: 2021-06-28

Nourani L, Zakeri S, N Dinparast Djadid (2020)

Dynamics of prevalence and distribution pattern of avian Plasmodium species and its vectors in diverse zoogeographical areas - A review.

Infection, genetics and evolution : journal of molecular epidemiology and evolutionary genetics in infectious diseases, 81:104244.

Avian Plasmodium is of special interest to health care scientists and veterinarians due to the potency of causing avian malaria in non-adapted birds and their evolutionary phylogenetic relationship with human malaria species. This article aimed to provide a comprehensive list of the common avian Plasmodium parasites in the birds and mosquitoes, to specify the common Plasmodium species and lineages in the selected regions of West of Asia, East of Europe, and North of Africa/Middle East, and to determine the contribution of generalist and host-specific Plasmodium species and lineages. The final list of published infected birds includes 146 species, among which Passer domesticus was the most prevalent in the studied areas. The species of Acrocephalus arundinaceus and Sylvia atricapilla were reported as common infected hosts in the examined regions of three continents. The highest numbers of common species of infected birds between continent pairs were from Asia and Europe, and no common record was found from Europe and Africa. The species of Milvus migrans and Upupa epops were recorded as common species from Asia and Africa. The lineage of GRW11 and species of P. relictum were the most prevalent parasites among all the infection records in birds. The most prevalent genus of vectors of avian malaria belonged to Culex and species of Cx. pipiens. The lineage SGS1 with the highest number of occurrence has been found in various vectors comprising Cx. pipiens, Cx. modestus, Cx. theileri, Cx. sasai, Cx. perexiguus, Lutzia vorax, and Culicoides alazanicus. A total of 31 Plasmodium species and 59 Plasmodium lineages were recorded from these regions. SGS1, GRW04, and GRW11, and P. relictum and P. vaughani are specified as common generalist avian malaria parasites from these three geographic areas. The presence of avian Plasmodium parasites in distant geographic areas and various hosts may be explained by the movement of the infected birds through the migration routes. Although most recorded lineages were from Asia, investigating the distribution of lineages in some of the countries has not been done. Thus, the most important outcome of this review is the determination of the distribution pattern of parasite and vector species that shed light on gaps requiring further studies on the monitoring of avian Plasmodium and common vectors extension. This task could be achieved through scientific field and laboratory networking, performing active surveillance and designing regional/continental control programs of birds' malaria and other zoonotic diseases.

RevDate: 2021-06-28
CmpDate: 2021-06-28

Reuter G, Boros Á, Mátics R, et al (2020)

Detection and complete genome characterization of a novel RNA virus related to members of the Hepe-Virga clade in bird species, hoopoe (Upupa epops).

Infection, genetics and evolution : journal of molecular epidemiology and evolutionary genetics in infectious diseases, 81:104236.

Using viral metagenomics, next-generation sequencing and RT-PCR techniques a genetically divergent hepevirus-like RNA virus was identified and characterized from a faecal sample of wild bird species, hoopoe (Upupa epops) in Hungary. The complete viral genome sequence of hoopoe/BBanka01/2015/HUN (GenBank accession number MN852439) is 7052 nt long including a 54-nt 5' and an 18-nt 3' non-coding region without poly(A)-tail. Sequence analysis indicated that the hoopoe/BBanka01/2015/HUN genome has potentially three overlapping open reading frames (ORFs). The ORF1 (6558 nt/2185aa) encodes a long, non-structural polyprotein (replicase) including putative functional domains and conserved aa motifs of methyltransferase with domain Y, RNA helicase and RdRp and has <33% aa identity to the known hepe- and hepe-like viruses. The ORF2 (1446 nt/481aa) encodes a putative structural (capsid) protein overlapping with ORF1 but translated in different coding frame. The functions of the short ORF3 (426 nt/141aa) were not predictable. Similar virus sequences were not detected from samples from 21 further bird species. The taxonomic position of this novel virus is presently unknown.

RevDate: 2021-09-06
CmpDate: 2019-04-05

Abumandour MMA, MS Gewaily (2019)

Gross morphological and ultrastructural characterization of the oropharyngeal cavity of the Eurasian hoopoe captured from Egypt.

Anatomical science international, 94(2):172-179.

The present study aimed to give full morphological insight into the oropharyngeal cavity of Eurasian hoopoe at the level of gross morphology in addition to ultrastructural inspection including light- and scanning electron microscopy. The oropharyngeal cavity has a triangular appearance with a very long rostrally located beak, helping the bird achieve its feeding mechanism. The floor of the oropharyngeal cavity is divided into three parts; a pre-lingual part with a pre-lingual fold, a lingual part containing a rudimentary triangular tongue, and a laryngeal part, which contains a small elevated laryngeal mound. There are four giant papillae and numerous openings of lingual salivary glands on the root. The roof is divided into the pre-choanal and the choanal region. The pre-choanal region has two parallel palatine ridges, while the choanal region had an ovoid-shaped choanal cleft rostrally, followed caudally by a narrow infundibular slit. The mechanical papillae on the roof are arranged in two rows directed caudally; one row is located on the free border of rostral half of the choanal cleft, while the other row is located between the pharynx cavity and the esophagus. The histological study showed that the tongue was covered dorsally and ventrally by keratinized stratified squamous epithelium and supported centrally by entoglossum, which extends from the root until the rostral tip of the tongue. The entoglossum was mainly cartilaginous rostrally in the apex and ossified caudally in the lingual body and root. Numerous mucous glands scattered in the sub mucosa of the lingual root as well as in the palatine region convey their secretions to the surface through a duct guarded by diffuse lymphocytic infiltration.

RevDate: 2022-03-21

Liechti F, Bauer S, Dhanjal-Adams KL, et al (2018)

Miniaturized multi-sensor loggers provide new insight into year-round flight behaviour of small trans-Sahara avian migrants.

Movement ecology, 6:19.

BACKGROUND: Over the past decade, the miniaturisation of animal borne tags such as geolocators and GPS-transmitters has revolutionized our knowledge of the whereabouts of migratory species. Novel light-weight multi-sensor loggers (1.4 g), which harbour sensors for measuring ambient light intensity, atmospheric pressure, temperature and acceleration, were fixed to two long-distance migrant bird species - eurasian hoopoe (Upupa epops) and great reed warbler (Acrocephalus arundinaceus). Using acceleration and atmospheric pressure data recorded every 5 and 30 min, respectively, we aimed at reconstructing individual diurnal and seasonal patterns of flight activity and flight altitude and thereby, at describing basic, yet hitherto unknown characteristics of migratory flight behaviour. Furthermore, we wanted to characterise the variability in these migration characteristics between individuals, species and migration periods.

RESULTS: The flight duration from breeding to sub-Saharan African non-breeding sites and back was more variable within than between the species. Great reed warblers were airborne for a total of 252 flight hours and thus, only slightly longer than eurasian hoopoes with 232 h. With a few exceptions, both species migrated predominantly nocturnally - departure around dusk and landing before dawn. Mean flight altitudes were higher during pre- than during post-breeding migration (median 1100 to 1600 m a.s.l.) and flight above 3000 m occurred regularly with a few great reed warblers exceeding 6000 m a.s.l. (max. 6458 m a.s.l.). Individuals changed flight altitudes repeatedly during a flight bout, indicating a continuous search for (more) favourable flight conditions.

CONCLUSIONS: We found high variation between individuals in the flight behaviour parameters measured - a variation that surprisingly even exceeded the variation between the species. More importantly, our results have shown that multi-sensor loggers have the potential to provide detailed insights into many fundamental aspects of individual behaviour in small aerial migrants. Combining the data recorded on the multiple sensors with, e.g., remote sensing data like weather and habitat quality on the spatial and temporal scale will be a great step forward to explore individual decisions during migration and their consequences.

RevDate: 2019-11-20

Rodríguez-Ruano SM, Martín-Vivaldi M, Peralta-Sánchez JM, et al (2018)

Seasonal and Sexual Differences in the Microbiota of the Hoopoe Uropygial Secretion.

Genes, 9(8):.

The uropygial gland of hoopoe nestlings and nesting females hosts bacterial symbionts that cause changes in the characteristics of its secretion, including an increase of its antimicrobial activity. These changes occur only in nesting individuals during the breeding season, possibly associated with the high infection risk experienced during the stay in the hole-nests. However, the knowledge on hoopoes uropygial gland microbial community dynamics is quite limited and based so far on culture-dependent and molecular fingerprinting studies. In this work, we sampled wild and captive hoopoes of different sex, age, and reproductive status, and studied their microbiota using quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR), fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) and pyrosequencing. Surprisingly, we found a complex bacterial community in all individuals (including non-nesting ones) during the breeding season. Nevertheless, dark secretions from nesting hoopoes harbored significantly higher bacterial density than white secretions from breeding males and both sexes in winter. We hypothesize that bacterial proliferation may be host-regulated in phases of high infection risk (i.e., nesting). We also highlight the importance of specific antimicrobial-producing bacteria present only in dark secretions that may be key in this defensive symbiosis. Finally, we discuss the possible role of environmental conditions in shaping the uropygial microbiota, based on differences found between wild and captive hoopoes.

RevDate: 2018-11-14
CmpDate: 2018-07-25

van Wijk RE, Schaub M, Hahn S, et al (2018)

Diverse migration strategies in hoopoes (Upupa epops) lead to weak spatial but strong temporal connectivity.

Die Naturwissenschaften, 105(7-8):42.

The annual cycle of migrating birds is shaped by their seasonal movements between breeding and non-breeding sites. Studying how migratory populations are linked throughout the annual cycle-migratory connectivity, is crucial to understanding the population dynamics of migrating bird species. This requires the consideration not only of spatial scales as has been the main focus to date but also of temporal scales: only when both aspects are taken into account, the degree of migratory connectivity can be properly defined. We investigated the migration behaviour of hoopoes (Upupa epops) from four breeding populations across Europe and characterised migration routes to and from the breeding grounds, location of non-breeding sites and the timing of key migration events. Migration behaviour was found to vary both within and amongst populations, and even though the spatial migratory connectivity amongst the populations was weak, temporal connectivity was strong with differences in timing amongst populations, but consistent timing within populations. The combination of diverse migration routes within populations and co-occurrence on the non-breeding grounds between populations might promote exchange between breeding populations. As a result, it might make hoopoes and other migrating bird species with similar strategies more resilient to future habitat or climatic changes and stabilise population trends.

RevDate: 2019-02-15
CmpDate: 2019-02-11

Martín-Vivaldi M, Soler JJ, Martínez-García Á, et al (2018)

Acquisition of Uropygial Gland Microbiome by Hoopoe Nestlings.

Microbial ecology, 76(1):285-297.

Mutualistic symbioses between animals and bacteria depend on acquisition of appropriate symbionts while avoiding exploitation by non-beneficial microbes. The mode of acquisition of symbionts would determine, not only the probability of encountering but also evolutionary outcomes of mutualistic counterparts. The microbiome inhabiting the uropygial gland of the European hoopoe (Upupa epops) includes a variety of bacterial strains, some of them providing antimicrobial benefits. Here, the mode of acquisition and stability of this microbiome is analyzed by means of Automated rRNA Intergenic Spacer Analysis and two different experiments. The first experiment impeded mothers' access to their glands, thus avoiding direct transmission of microorganisms from female to offspring secretions. The second experiment explored the stability of the microbiomes by inoculating glands with secretions from alien nests. The first experiment provoked a reduction in similarity of microbiomes of mother and nestlings. Interestingly, some bacterial strains were more often detected when females had not access to their glands, suggesting antagonistic effects among bacteria from different sources. The second experiment caused an increase in richness of the microbiome of receivers in terms of prevalence of Operational Taxonomic Units (OTUs) that reduced differences in microbiomes of donors and receivers. That occurred because OTUs that were present in donors but not in receivers incorporated to the microbiome of the latter, which provoked that cross-inoculated nestlings got similar final microbiomes that included the most prevalent OTUs. The results are therefore consistent with a central role of vertical transmission in bacterial acquisition by nestling hoopoes and support the idea that the typical composition of the hoopoe gland microbiome is reached by the incorporation of some bacteria during the nestling period. This scenario suggests the existence of a coevolved core microbiome composed by a mix of specialized vertically transmitted strains and facultative symbionts able to coexist with them. The implications of this mixed mode of transmission for the evolution of the mutualism are discussed.

RevDate: 2019-09-23
CmpDate: 2019-09-23

Plard F, Arlettaz R, M Schaub (2018)

Hoopoe males experience intra-seasonal while females experience inter-seasonal reproductive costs.

Oecologia, 186(3):665-675.

Reproductive and survival costs due to reproductive investment are a central element for the evolution of life histories. Both intra- (reduction of reproductive performance of second brood due to investment in first brood) and inter-seasonal costs (reduction of reproductive performance or annual survival due to reproductive investment in preceding year) may appear in multiple breeding species. Knowledge about how trade-offs within and between seasons shape individual trajectories and influence fitness are crucial in life-history evolution, yet intra- and inter-seasonal reproductive costs are rarely analysed simultaneously. We investigated sex-specific differences in intra- and inter-seasonal reproductive and survival costs in response to previous reproductive effort in a monogamous, double-brooding bird, the hoopoe (Upupa epops), accounting for heterogeneity in individual and annual quality. Intra-seasonal reproductive costs were detected in males and inter-seasonal reproductive and survival costs were detected in females. In males, the probability of being a successful double breeder was negatively correlated with the number of hatchlings produced in the first brood. In females, the number of fledglings raised in the first brood was negatively correlated with the reproductive effort in the preceding season. Female annual survival was also negatively influenced by the number of broods produced in the previous reproductive season. Most of these reproductive costs were detected only in years with low productivity, suggesting that costs become evident when environmental conditions are harsh. Our results illustrate how different investment in current vs. future reproduction and survival shape different life-history strategies in males and females of a monogamous bird species.

RevDate: 2018-08-08
CmpDate: 2018-03-16

Plard F, Schindler S, Arlettaz R, et al (2018)

Sex-Specific Heterogeneity in Fixed Morphological Traits Influences Individual Fitness in a Monogamous Bird Population.

The American naturalist, 191(1):106-119.

Theoretical work has emphasized the important role of individual traits on population dynamics, but empirical models are often based on average or stage-dependent demographic rates. In this study on a monogamous bird, the Eurasian hoopoe (Upupa epops), we show how the interactions between male and female fixed and dynamic heterogeneity influence demographic rates and population dynamics. We built an integral projection model including individual sex, age, condition (reflecting dynamic heterogeneity), and fixed morphology (reflecting fixed heterogeneity). Fixed morphology was derived from a principal component analysis of six morphological traits. Our results revealed that reproductive success and survival were linked to fixed heterogeneity, whereas dynamic heterogeneity influenced mainly the timing of reproduction. Fixed heterogeneity had major consequences for the population growth rate, but interestingly, its effect on population dynamics differed between the sexes. Female fixed morphology was directly linked to annual reproductive success, whereas male fixed morphology also influenced annual survival, being twice higher in large than in small males. Even in a monogamous bird with shared parental care, large males can reach 10% higher fitness than females. Including the dynamics of male and female individual traits in population models refines our understanding of the individual mechanisms that influence demographic rates and population dynamics and can help in identifying differences in sex-specific strategies.

RevDate: 2018-12-02
CmpDate: 2018-03-02

Ni Y, Wang L, Liu X, et al (2017)

Micro-mechanical properties of different sites on woodpecker's skull.

Computer methods in biomechanics and biomedical engineering, 20(14):1483-1493.

The uneven distributed microstructure featured with plate-like spongy bone in woodpecker's skull has been found to further help reduce the impact during woodpecker's pecking behavior. Therefore, this work was to investigate the micro-mechanical properties and composition on different sites of Great Spotted woodpecker's (GSW) skull. Different sites were selected on forehead, tempus and occiput, which were also compared with those of Eurasian Hoopoe (EH) and Lark birds (LB). Micro structural parameters assessed from micro computed tomography (μCT) occurred significantly difference between GSW, EH and LB. The micro finite element (micro-FE) models were developed and the simulation was performed as a compression process. The maximal stresses of GSW's micro-FE models were all lower than those of EH and LB respectively and few concentrated stresses were noticed on GSW's trabecular bone. Fourier transform infrared mapping suggesting a greater organic content in the occiput of GSW's cranial bone compared with others. The nano-hardness of the GSW's occiput was decreasing from forehead to occiput. The mechanical properties, site-dependent hardness distribution and special material composition of GSW's skull bone are newly found in this study. These factors may lead to a new design of bulk material mimicking these characteristics.

RevDate: 2018-10-03
CmpDate: 2017-10-30

Adams EM, Champagne AM, Williams JB, et al (2017)

Interfacial properties of avian stratum corneum monolayers investigated by Brewster angle microscopy and vibrational sum frequency generation.

Chemistry and physics of lipids, 208:1-9.

The outermost layer of skin, the stratum corneum (SC), contains a complex mixture of lipids, which controls the rate of cutaneous water loss (CWL) in reptiles, mammals, and birds. However, the molecular structure of SC lipids and how molecular configurations influence CWL is poorly understood. Here, the organization and structure of SC lipids extracted from birds were investigated by means of Langmuir films. Properties of lipids from the SC of arid and semi-arid adapted larks, known to have a low CWL, were compared with lipids extracted from the SC of mesic lark species with higher CWL to gain insight into how structure impacts CWL. Film properties were probed with surface pressure-area isotherms, Brewster angle microscopy (BAM), and vibrational sum frequency generation (VSFG). Results indicate organization and ordering of SC lipids in the arid-adapted hoopoe lark was vastly different from all other species, forming a miscible, rigid monolayer, whereas monolayers from semi-arid and mesic species were immiscible and disordered. Probing of interfacial water structure reveals that film morphology determines organization of water molecules near the monolayer; monolayers with a porous morphology had an increased population of water molecules that are weakly hydrogen-bonded. In general, CWL appears related to the miscibility and ordering of lipid components within the SC, as well as the ability of these lipids to interact with water molecules. From a broader perspective, CWL in larks appears linked to both the SC lipid composition and the aridity of the species' environment.

RevDate: 2018-11-13
CmpDate: 2017-09-28

Expósito-Granados M, Parejo D, Martínez JG, et al (2017)

An experimental test of host's life history traits modulation in response to cuckoo parasitism risk.

PloS one, 12(6):e0179206.

Hosts can counteract parasites through defences based on resistance and/or tolerance. The mechanistic basis of tolerance, which involve defensive mechanisms minimizing parasite damage after a successful parasitic attack, remains poorly explored in the study of cuckoo-host interactions. Here, we experimentally explore the possibility that the risk of great spotted cuckoo Clamator glandarius parasitism may induce tolerance defences in magpie Pica pica hosts through plasticity in life-history traits. We predict that magpies exposed to auditory cues indicating high parasitism risk will more likely exhibit resistance and/or modify their life-history traits to minimize parasitism costs (i.e. tolerance) compared to magpies under low parasitism risk. We found that manipulating the perceived parasitism risk did not affect host resistance (i.e. rejection of parasitic eggs) nor host life-history traits. Unexpectedly, host's egg volume increased over the season in nests exposed to auditory cues of control non-harmful hoopoes Upupa epops. Our results do not provide support for inducible defences (either based on resistance or tolerance) in response to risk of parasitism in magpie hosts. Even so, we encourage studying plastic expression of breeding strategies in response to risk of cuckoo parasitism to achieve a better understanding of the mechanistic basis of tolerance defences.

RevDate: 2018-12-02
CmpDate: 2017-11-06

Wang E, Van Wijk RE, Braun MS, et al (2017)

Gene flow and genetic drift contribute to high genetic diversity with low phylogeographical structure in European hoopoes (Upupa epops).

Molecular phylogenetics and evolution, 113:113-125.

The Hoopoe (Upupa epops epops) breeds widely in Eurasia and most populations migrate to Africa during the boreal winter. To date, data regarding its phylogeography in Europe are missing. In this study, we investigated the phylogeography and population genetics of Hoopoes by means of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) sequencing as well as microsatellite genotyping. Our analyses revealed 32 haplotypes in the cytochrome c oxidase subunit I (COI) (269 individuals) and 50 haplotypes in cytochrome b (cyt b) (233 individuals). Analyses of mtDNA clearly demonstrated that the bulk of variance (98.23%) could be attributed to inner-population variance. Thus, the low frequency single nucleotide substitutions resulted in "star-like" haplotype networks without define geographical structure. Hoopoes clearly experienced a bottleneck followed by sudden expansion, as was also apparent from tests on the unimodal mismatch, Bayesian skyline plot, significant negative neutrality tests as well as bottleneck signals. These tests pointed to strong demographic fluctuations in the hoopoe populations. GENELAND, DAPC and STRUCTURE analyses of microsatellites along with their corresponding Fst values suggested that current genetic restriction separates birds from Armenia from the remaining populations. Except for hoopoes from Armenia, all the European populations exhibited an admixed phylogeographic pattern. We conclude that this genetic panmixia might be a consequence of a combination of historical events (e.g. repeated colonizations and retreatments from northern habitats during the Pleistocene and a sudden postglacial expansion) and current processes (e.g. long-distance migration, immigration or population recruitments).

RevDate: 2022-03-21

van Wijk RE, Bauer S, M Schaub (2016)

Repeatability of individual migration routes, wintering sites, and timing in a long-distance migrant bird.

Ecology and evolution, 6(24):8679-8685.

Migratory birds are often faithful to wintering (nonbreeding) sites, and also migration timing is usually remarkably consistent, that is, highly repeatable. Spatiotemporal repeatability can be of advantage for multiple reasons, including familiarity with local resources and predators as well as avoiding the costs of finding a new place, for example, nesting grounds. However, when the environment is variable in space and time, variable site selection and timing might be more rewarding. To date, studies on spatial and temporal repeatability in short-lived long-distance migrants are scarce, most notably of first-time and subsequent migrations. Here, we investigated repeatability in autumn migration directions, wintering sites, and annual migration timing in Hoopoes (Upupa epops), a long-distance migrant, using repeated tracks of adult and first-time migrants. Even though autumn migration directions were mostly the same, individual wintering sites often changed from year to year with distances between wintering sites exceeding 1,000 km. The timing of migration was repeatable within an individual during autumn, but not during spring migration. We suggest that Hoopoes respond to variable environmental conditions such as north-south shifts in rainfall during winter and differing onset of the food availability during spring migration.

RevDate: 2020-03-06
CmpDate: 2016-12-21

Ahmadpour M, Lan-Hai L, Ahmadpour M, et al (2016)

Mercury concentration in the feathers of birds from various trophic levels in Fereydunkenar International wetland (Iran).

Environmental monitoring and assessment, 188(12):666.

Mercury (Hg) is one of the main global pollutants that may biomagnify in food nets, especially in wetlands. Birds may be useful in the biomonitoring of Hg in such habitats and may even serve in vivo samples. This paper examined Hg concentration in the feathers of seven bird species foraging on Fereydunkenar International wetland (in 2013). Mean Hg concentrations found ranged from 0.005 ± 0.002 μg g[-1] d.w. (dry weight) (Common hoopoe) to 0.38 ± 0.047 μg g[-1] d.w. (Greylag goose). Significant differences in Hg concentrations were noted between bird species as well as between trophic levels (one-way ANOVAs, p < 0.001). The decrease in mean Hg concentration in feathers was as follows: Greylag goose > Northern pintail ≥ Gadwall ≥ Mallard > Eurasian bittern ≥ Little bittern > Common hoopoe. The position in the trophic chain significantly influenced Hg concentrations, which were the highest in omnivorous species. Hg concentrations may also depend on migration routes and breeding habitats, but the evaluation of the exposure exceeds the ambit of this paper. The Hg concentrations found generally were low, lower than the safe thresholds reported in the literature.

RevDate: 2018-12-02
CmpDate: 2017-07-24

Martínez-García Á, Martín-Vivaldi M, Rodríguez-Ruano SM, et al (2016)

Nest Bacterial Environment Affects Microbiome of Hoopoe Eggshells, but Not That of the Uropygial Secretion.

PloS one, 11(7):e0158158.

The study of associations between symbiotic bacterial communities of hosts and those of surrounding environments would help to understand how bacterial assemblages are acquired, and how they are transmitted from one to another location (i.e. symbiotic bacteria acquisition by hosts). Hoopoes (Upupa epops) smear their eggshells with uropygial secretion (oily secretion produced in their uropygial gland) that harbors antibiotic producing bacteria. Trying to elucidate a possible role of nest material and cloaca microbiota in determining the bacterial community of the uropygial gland and the eggshells of hoopoes, we characterized bacterial communities of nest material, cloaca, uropygial gland and eggshells by the ARISA fingerprinting. Further, by adding material with scarce bacteria and antimicrobial properties, we manipulated the bacterial community of nest material and thus tested experimentally its effects on the microbiomes of the uropygial secretion and of the eggshells. The experiment did not influence the microbiome of the uropygial secretion of females, but affected the community established on eggshells. This is the first experimental evidence indicating that nest material influences the bacterial community of the eggshells and, therefore, probability of embryo infection. Some of the bacterial strains detected in the secretion were also in the bacterial communities of the nest material and of cloaca, but their occurrence within nests was not associated, which suggests that bacterial environments of nest material and cloaca are not sources of symbiotic bacteria for the gland. These results do not support a role of nest environments of hoopoes as reservoirs of symbiotic bacteria. We discuss possible scenarios explaining bacterial acquisition by hoopoes that should be further explored.

RevDate: 2018-11-13
CmpDate: 2017-08-10

Martínez-García Á, Martín-Vivaldi M, Ruiz-Rodríguez M, et al (2016)

The Microbiome of the Uropygial Secretion in Hoopoes Is Shaped Along the Nesting Phase.

Microbial ecology, 72(1):252-261.

Microbial symbiont acquisition by hosts may determine the effectiveness of the mutualistic relationships. A mix of vertical and horizontal transmission may be advantageous for hosts by allowing plastic changes of microbial communities depending on environmental conditions. Plasticity is well known for gut microbiota but is poorly understood for other symbionts of wild animals. We here explore the importance of environmental conditions experienced by nestling hoopoes (Upupa epops) during the late nesting phase determining microbiota in their uropygial gland. In cross-fostering experiments of 8 days old nestlings, "sibling-sibling" and "mother-offspring" comparisons were used to explore whether the bacterial community naturally established in the uropygial gland of nestlings could change depending on experimental environmental conditions (i.e., new nest environment). We found that the final microbiome of nestlings was mainly explained by nest of origin. Moreover, cross-fostered nestlings were more similar to their siblings and mothers than to their stepsiblings and stepmothers. We also detected a significant effect of nest of rearing, suggesting that nestling hoopoes acquire most bacterial symbionts during the first days of life but that the microbiome is dynamic and can be modified along the nestling period depending on environmental conditions. Estimated effects of nest of rearing, but also most of those of nest of origin are associated to environmental characteristics of nests, which are extended phenotypes of parents. Thus, natural selection may favor the acquisition of appropriated microbial symbionts for particular environmental conditions found in nests.

RevDate: 2018-11-13
CmpDate: 2016-06-02

Rodríguez-Ruano SM, Martín-Vivaldi M, Martín-Platero AM, et al (2015)

The Hoopoe's Uropygial Gland Hosts a Bacterial Community Influenced by the Living Conditions of the Bird.

PloS one, 10(10):e0139734.

Molecular methods have revealed that symbiotic systems involving bacteria are mostly based on whole bacterial communities. Bacterial diversity in hoopoe uropygial gland secretion is known to be mainly composed of certain strains of enterococci, but this conclusion is based solely on culture-dependent techniques. This study, by using culture-independent techniques (based on the 16S rDNA and the ribosomal intergenic spacer region) shows that the bacterial community in the uropygial gland secretion is more complex than previously thought and its composition is affected by the living conditions of the bird. Besides the known enterococci, the uropygial gland hosts other facultative anaerobic species and several obligated anaerobic species (mostly clostridia). The bacterial assemblage of this community was largely invariable among study individuals, although differences were detected between captive and wild female hoopoes, with some strains showing significantly higher prevalence in wild birds. These results alter previous views on the hoopoe-bacteria symbiosis and open a new window to further explore this system, delving into the possible sources of symbiotic bacteria (e.g. nest environments, digestive tract, winter quarters) or the possible functions of different bacterial groups in different contexts of parasitism or predation of their hoopoe host.

RevDate: 2018-11-13
CmpDate: 2016-09-20

Martínez-García Á, Soler JJ, Rodríguez-Ruano SM, et al (2015)

Preening as a Vehicle for Key Bacteria in Hoopoes.

Microbial ecology, 70(4):1024-1033.

Oily secretions produced in the uropygial gland of incubating female hoopoes contain antimicrobial-producing bacteria that prevent feathers from degradation and eggs from pathogenic infection. Using the beak, females collect the uropygial gland secretion and smear it directly on the eggshells and brood patch. Thus, some bacterial strains detected in the secretion should also be present on the eggshell, beak, and brood patch. To characterize these bacterial communities, we used Automatic Ribosomal Intergenic Spacer Analysis (ARISA), which distinguishes between taxonomically different bacterial strains (i.e. different operational taxonomic units [OTUs]) by the size of the sequence amplified. We identified a total of 146 different OTUs with sizes between 139 and 999 bp. Of these OTUs, 124 were detected in the uropygial oil, 106 on the beak surface, 97 on the brood patch, and 98 on the eggshell. The highest richness of OTUs appeared in the uropygial oil samples. Moreover, the detection of some OTUs on the beak, brood patch, and eggshells of particular nests depended on these OTUs being present in the uropygial oil of the female. These results agree with the hypothesis that symbiotic bacteria are transmitted from the uropygial gland to beak, brood patch, and eggshell surfaces, opening the possibility that the bacterial community of the secretion plays a central role in determining the communities of special hoopoe eggshell structures (i.e., crypts) that, soon after hatching, are filled with uropygial oil, thereby protecting embryos from pathogens.

RevDate: 2015-07-11
CmpDate: 2016-04-22

Molina-López RA, Vidal A, Obón E, et al (2015)

Multidrug-resistant Salmonella enterica Serovar Typhimurium Monophasic Variant 4,12:i:- Isolated from Asymptomatic Wildlife in a Catalonian Wildlife Rehabilitation Center, Spain.

Journal of wildlife diseases, 51(3):759-763.

Wildlife can act as long-term asymptomatic reservoirs for zoonotic bacteria, such as Salmonella. The prevalence and antimicrobial-susceptibility profiles of Salmonella spp. were assessed in 263 cases in wildlife from 22 animal orders from a wildlife rehabilitation center in Catalonia (NE Spain), September 2013-May 2014. Eleven of 263 tested animals were positive for Salmonella spp., representing an overall prevalence of 4.2%. Prevalences by taxonomic categories were 2% in mammals, 4.7% in birds, and 4.5% in reptiles. By species, one each of European hedgehog (Erinaceus europeus; from a sample of n = 26), Eurasian Eagle Owl (Bubo bubo; n = 2), Barn Owl (Tyto alba; n = 3), Tawny Owl (Strix aluco; n = 20), Egyptian Vulture (Neophron percnopterus; n = 1), Griffon Vulture (Gyps fulvus; n = 1), and Hoopoe (Upupa epops; n = 2), and two each Common Kestrels (Falco tinnunculus; n = 16) and pond sliders (Trachemys scripta; n = 25) were positive for Salmonella. By serotyping, seven of eleven isolates were classified as S. enterica subsp. enterica serovar Typhimurium, and five of seven belonged to the monophasic variant 4,12:i:-. All the monophasic variants were isolated from birds (4/5 in raptors) and showed a multidrug-resistance (MDR) profile to at least ampicillin, streptomycin, sulfonamide, and tetracycline (R-type ASSuT), and up to 12 antibiotics. The large proportion of S. Typhimurium monophasic MDR strains detected in wildlife never treated with antibiotics, especially in raptors, adds more complexity to the epidemiologic control of one of the most frequent serovars involved in human and livestock infection.

RevDate: 2015-04-07
CmpDate: 2016-01-04

Splichalova P, Svec P, Ghosh A, et al (2015)

Prevalence, diversity and characterization of enterococci from three coraciiform birds.

Antonie van Leeuwenhoek, 107(5):1281-1289.

Coraciiform birds hoopoe (Upupa epops), common kingfisher (Alcedo atthis) and European roller (Coracius garrulus) were examined for enterococci in their cloacae and uropygial glands. The enterococcal isolates were identified at the species level using several genomic and proteomic methods, screened for antibiotic susceptibility and genotyped by pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE). Clonality of isolates from the common kingfisher was also assessed by multi-locus sequence typing (MLST). Using selective media, putative enterococcal isolates (n = 117) were recovered from 74% (32 out of a total of 43) of the bird samples and 114 isolates were confirmed as enterococci. Overall, among the total of 6 different species detected, Enterococcus faecalis was dominant (59%) in all three bird species. The second most frequently isolated species was Enterococcus casseliflavus (32%). PFGE revealed great diversity of strains from different bird species and anatomic location. Closely related strains were found only from nestlings from the same nest. No genes conferring resistance to vancomycin (vanA, vanB, vanC1 and van C2/C3) or erythromycin (erm A, ermB and mefA/E) were detected. MLST analysis and eBURST clustering revealed that sequence types of E. faecalis from the common kingfisher were identical to those of isolates found previously in water, chickens, and humans.

RevDate: 2018-10-23
CmpDate: 2016-06-16

Klimovičová M, Mikula P, Kahure N, et al (2014)

A review of quill mites (Acari: Syringophilidae) parasitising Kenyan birds.

Zootaxa, 3857(4):571-580 pii:zootaxa.3857.4.6.

Two new species of quill mites (Acari: Prostigmata: Syringophilidae) collected from passeriform and coraciiform birds from Kenya are described : Neoaulonastus apalis sp. nov. from Apalis porphyrolaema Reichenow and Neumann (Passeriformes: Cisticolidae) and Peristerophila upupi sp. nov. from Upupa epops Linnaeus (Coraciiformes: Upupidae). Additionally, 3 new host species: Cisticola hunteri Shelley, 1889; Acrocephalus baeticatus (Vieillot, 1817) and Ploceus xanthops (Hartlaub, 1862) from Kenya and two new localities are recorded for genera: Aulobia Kethley, 1970; Neoaulonastus Skoracki, 2004 and Syringophiloidus Kethley, 1970. The previous and the latest knowledge about syringophilid mites from Kenya is summarized in tabular form.

RevDate: 2021-10-21
CmpDate: 2015-06-05

Ruiz-Rodríguez M, Soler JJ, Martín-Vivaldi M, et al (2014)

Environmental factors shape the community of symbionts in the hoopoe uropygial gland more than genetic factors.

Applied and environmental microbiology, 80(21):6714-6723.

Exploring processes of coevolution of microorganisms and their hosts is a new imperative for life sciences. If bacteria protect hosts against pathogens, mechanisms facilitating the intergenerational transmission of such bacteria will be strongly selected by evolution. By disentangling the diversity of bacterial strains from the uropygium of hoopoes (Upupa epops) due to genetic relatedness or to a common environment, we explored the importance of horizontal (from the environment) and vertical (from parents) acquisition of antimicrobial-producing symbionts in this species. For this purpose, we compared bacterial communities among individuals in nonmanipulated nests; we also performed a cross-fostering experiment using recently hatched nestlings before uropygial gland development and some nestlings that were reared outside hoopoe nests. The capacity of individuals to acquire microbial symbionts horizontally during their development was supported by our results, since cross-fostered nestlings share bacterial strains with foster siblings and nestlings that were not in contact with hoopoe adults or nests also developed the symbiosis. Moreover, nestlings could change some bacterial strains over the course of their stay in the nest, and adult females changed their bacterial community in different years. However, a low rate of vertical transmission was inferred, since genetic siblings reared in different nests shared more bacterial strains than they shared with unrelated nestlings raised in different nests. In conclusion, hoopoes are able to incorporate new symbionts from the environment during the development of the uropygium, which could be a selective advantage if strains with higher antimicrobial capacity are incorporated into the gland and could aid hosts in fighting against pathogenic and disease-causing microbes.

RevDate: 2018-10-23
CmpDate: 2016-05-09

Hume JP (2014)

Systematics, morphology, and ecological history of the Mascarene starlings (Aves: Sturnidae) with the description of a new genus and species from Mauritius.

Zootaxa, 3849:1-75 pii:zootaxa.3849.1.1.

Two endemic starlings, both extinct, have been described from the Mascarene Islands of Réunion and Rodrigues: the Hoopoe Starling, Huppe or Réunion Crested Starling Fregilupus varius, which is known from 19 skins and a single Holocene proximal end of a fossil femur, and the Rodrigues Starling Necropsar rodericanus, which is known as specimens only from fossils of most skeletal elements. Both were recorded alive in early accounts of Mascarene faunas. A third species of starling Cryptopsar ischyrhynchus gen. nov. sp. nov. is described herein from fossils from Mauritius, but was never reported in the early literature. This paper provides an analysis of the Sturnidae of the Mascarene Islands based on newly discovered fossil remains, and details historical reports and accounts. Their ecology and extinction are interpreted from historical evidence. Necropsar, Cryptopsar and Fregilupus clearly form part of the same clade, but morphological analysis shows that Necropsar and Cryptopsar are more closely related to each other than to Fregilupus and may have been part of a different colonisation event. All three genera appear to have their origins in SE Asia and have morphological similarities with the SE Asian sturnid genera, Sturnia and Gracupica, so they presumably colonised the islands via island-hopping during lower sea level stands.

RevDate: 2021-10-21
CmpDate: 2014-10-22

Soler JJ, Martín-Vivaldi M, Peralta-Sánchez JM, et al (2014)

Hoopoes color their eggs with antimicrobial uropygial secretions.

Die Naturwissenschaften, 101(9):697-705.

Uropygial gland secretions are used as cosmetics by some species of birds to color and enhance properties of feathers and teguments, which may signal individual quality. Uropygial secretions also reach eggshells during incubation and, therefore, may influence the coloration of birds' eggs, a trait that has attracted the attention of evolutionary biologists for more than one century. The color of hoopoe eggs typically changes along incubation, from bluish-gray to greenish-brown. Here, we test experimentally the hypothesis that dark uropygial secretion of females is responsible for such drastic color change. Moreover, since uropygial secretion of hoopoes has antimicrobial properties, we also explore the association between color and antimicrobial activity of the uropygial secretion of females. We found that eggs stayed bluish-gray in nests where female access to the uropygial secretion was experimentally blocked. Furthermore, experimental eggs that were maintained in incubators and manually smeared with uropygial secretion experienced similar color changes that naturally incubated eggs did, while control eggs that were not in contact with the secretions did not experience such color changes. All these results strongly support the hypothesis that female hoopoes use their uropygial gland secretion to color the eggs. Moreover, saturation of the uropygial secretion was associated with antimicrobial activity against Bacillus licheniformis. Given the known antimicrobial potential of uropygial secretions of birds, this finding opens the possibility that in scenarios of sexual selection, hoopoes in particular and birds in general signal antimicrobial properties of their uropygial secretion by mean of changes in egg coloration along incubation.

RevDate: 2021-10-21
CmpDate: 2015-08-31

Tschumi M, Schaub M, R Arlettaz (2014)

Territory occupancy and parental quality as proxies for spatial prioritization of conservation areas.

PloS one, 9(5):e97679.

In order to maximize their fitness, individuals aim at choosing territories offering the most appropriate combination of resources. As population size fluctuates in time, the frequency of breeding territory occupancy reflects territory quality. We investigated the relationships between the frequency of territory occupancy (2002-2009) vs. habitat characteristics, prey abundance, reproductive success and parental traits in hoopoes Upupa epops L., with the objective to define proxies for the delineation of conservation priority areas. We predicted that the distribution of phenotypes is despotic and sought for phenotypic characteristics expressing dominance. Our findings support the hypothesis of a despotic distribution. Territory selection was non-random: frequently occupied territories were settled earlier in the season and yielded higher annual reproductive success, but the frequency of territory occupancy could not be related to any habitat characteristics. Males found in frequently occupied territories showed traits expressing dominance (i.e. larger body size and mass, and older age). In contrast, morphological traits of females were not related to the frequency of territory occupancy, suggesting that territory selection and maintenance were essentially a male's task. Settlement time in spring, reproductive success achieved in a given territory, as well as phenotypic traits and age of male territory holders reflected territory quality, providing good proxies for assessing priority areas for conservation management.

RevDate: 2018-12-02
CmpDate: 2016-04-06

Martín-Vivaldi M, Soler JJ, Peralta-Sánchez JM, et al (2014)

Special structures of hoopoe eggshells enhance the adhesion of symbiont-carrying uropygial secretion that increase hatching success.

The Journal of animal ecology, 83(6):1289-1301.

Animals live in a bacterial world, and detecting and exploring adaptations favouring mutualistic relationships with antibiotic-producing bacteria as a strategy to fight pathogens are of prime importance for evolutionary ecologists. Uropygial secretion of European hoopoes (Upupa epops, Linnaeus) contains antimicrobials from mutualistic bacteria that may be used to prevent embryo infection. Here, we investigated the microscopic structure of hoopoe eggshells looking for special features favouring the adhesion of antimicrobial uropygial secretions. We impeded female access to the uropygial gland and compared microscopic characteristics of eggshells, bacterial loads of eggs and of uropygial secretion, and hatching success of experimental and control females. Then, we explored the link between microbiological characteristics of uropygial secretion and these of eggs of hoopoes, as well as possible fitness benefits. The microscopic study revealed special structures in hoopoes' eggshells (crypts). The experimental prevention of females' gland access demonstrated that crypts are filled with uropygial secretion and that symbiotic enterococci bacteria on the eggshells come, at least partially, from those in the female's uropygial gland. Moreover, the experiment resulted in a higher permeability of eggshells by several groups of bacteria and in elimination of the positive relationships detected for control nests between hatching success and density of symbiotic bacteria, either in the uropygial secretion of females or on the eggshell. The findings of specialized crypts on the eggshells of hoopoes, and of video-recorded females smearing secretion containing symbiotic bacteria at a high density onto the eggshells strongly support a link between secretion and bacteria on eggs. Moreover, the detected associations between bacteria and hatching success suggest that crypts enhancing the adhesion of symbiont-carrying uropygial secretion likely protect embryos against infections.

RevDate: 2021-10-21
CmpDate: 2014-04-28

Zehtindjiev P, Ivanova K, Mariaux J, et al (2013)

First data on the genetic diversity of avian haemosporidians in China: cytochrome b lineages of the genera Plasmodium and Haemoproteus (Haemosporida) from Gansu Province.

Parasitology research, 112(10):3509-3515.

A total of 76 birds belonging to 23 species and 14 families was examined for the presence of Plasmodium spp. and Haemoproteus spp. Birds were trapped at four localities in Gansu Province, China, in June-July 2011. DNA was isolated from blood samples and parasite detection, and identification was based on PCR assays and sequences of 479 bp of cyt b gene. The total prevalence of haemosporidians was 21.0%. Haemoproteus spp. were detected in 14 birds (prevalence 18.4%). The lineage CYAPIC1 from Cyanopica cyanus, Parus major, Passer montanus and Pyrrhocorax pyrrhocorax was new; it is genetically distinct and probably represents a new species of the genus Haemoproteus. Three lineages represented known species: RBS4 (from Lanius tephronotus), a lineage of Haemoproteus lanii; COLL2 (from Turdus mupinensis), a lineage of Haemoproteus pallidus and TURDUS2 (from Turdus rubrocanus), a lineage of Haemoproteus minutus. The lineage RBS5 (from Lanius cristatus and L. tephronotus) differs by 1.4% from RBS4 and probably represents an intraspecific entity of H. lanii. The lineages TUCHR1 (recorded from T. mupinensis), WW1 (recorded from Upupa epops) and YWT2 (recorded from Motacilla flava) have not been linked to any known species for the moment. Only one bird was positive for Plasmodium (prevalence 1.4%), i.e. P. major infected with the lineage GRW4 of Plasmodium relictum. The latter lineage has been considered by previous studies as typical for migratory birds and having transmission in tropical areas only; its record in a sedentary bird in China suggests its transmission in temperate latitudes.

RevDate: 2018-12-02
CmpDate: 2013-11-04

Ruiz-Rodríguez M, Martínez-Bueno M, Martín-Vivaldi M, et al (2013)

Bacteriocins with a broader antimicrobial spectrum prevail in enterococcal symbionts isolated from the hoopoe's uropygial gland.

FEMS microbiology ecology, 85(3):495-502.

The use of compounds produced by symbiotic bacteria against pathogens in animals is one of the most exciting discoveries in ecological immunology. The study of those antibiotic metabolites will enable an understanding of the defensive strategies against pathogenic infections. Here, we explore the role of bacteriocins explaining the antimicrobial properties of symbiotic bacteria isolated from the uropygial gland of the hoopoe (Upupa epops). The antagonistic activity of 187 strains was assayed against eight indicator bacteria, and the presence of six bacteriocin genes was detected in the genomic DNA. The presence of bacteriocin genes correlated with the antimicrobial activity of isolates. The most frequently detected bacteriocin genes were those encoding for the MR10 and AS-48 enterocins, which confer the highest inhibition capacity. All the isolates belonged to the genus Enterococcus, with E. faecalis as the most abundant species, with the broadest antimicrobial spectrum and the highest antagonistic activity. The vast majority of E. faecalis strains carried the genes of MR10 and AS-48 in their genome. Therefore, we suggest that fitness-related benefits for hoopoes associated with harbouring the most bactericidal symbionts cause the highest frequency of strains carrying MR10 and AS-48 genes. The study of mechanisms associated with the acquisition and selection of bacterial symbionts by hoopoes is necessary, however, to reach further conclusions.

RevDate: 2021-10-21
CmpDate: 2014-05-08

Ruiz-Rodríguez M, Avilés JM, Cuervo JJ, et al (2013)

Does avian conspicuous colouration increase or reduce predation risk?.

Oecologia, 173(1):83-93.

Animals often announce their unprofitability to predators through conspicuous coloured signals. Here we tested whether the apparently conspicuous colour designs of the four European Coraciiformes and Upupiformes species may have evolved as aposematic signals, or whether instead they imply a cost in terms of predation risk. Because previous studies suggested that these species are unpalatable, we hypothesized that predators could avoid targeting them based on their colours. An experiment was performed where two artificial models of each bird species were exposed simultaneously to raptor predators, one painted so as to resemble the real colour design of these birds, and the other one painted using cryptic colours. Additionally, we used field data on the black kite's diet to compare the selection of these four species to that of other avian prey. Conspicuous models were attacked in equal or higher proportions than their cryptic counterparts, and the attack rate on the four species increased with their respective degree of contrast against natural backgrounds. The analysis of the predator's diet revealed that the two least attacked species were negatively selected in nature despite their abundance. Both conspicuous and cryptic models of one of the studied species (the hoopoe) received fewer attacks than cryptic models of the other three species, suggesting that predators may avoid this species for characteristics other than colour. Globally, our results suggest that the colour of coraciiforms and upupiforms does not function as an aposematic signal that advises predators of their unprofitability, but also that conspicuous colours may increase predation risk in some species, supporting thus the handicap hypothesis.

RevDate: 2021-10-21
CmpDate: 2014-05-08

Schmid B, Tam-Dafond L, Jenni-Eiermann S, et al (2013)

Modulation of the adrenocortical response to acute stress with respect to brood value, reproductive success and survival in the Eurasian hoopoe.

Oecologia, 173(1):33-44.

Reproducing parents face the difficult challenge of trading-off investment in current reproduction against presumed future survival and reproduction. Glucocorticoids are supposed to mediate this trade-off because the adrenocortical response to stress disrupts normal reproductive behaviour in favour of self-maintenance and own survival. According to the brood-value hypothesis, individuals with a low survival probability until the next reproductive season have to invest in current reproduction, a process driven by a down-regulation of their adrenocortical response. If the adrenocortical response to stress effectively mediates the trade-off between current reproduction versus future survival and reproduction, we expect a negative relationship with reproductive success and a positive correlation of the adrenocortical stress response with survival. We studied the relationship between corticosterone secretion in parents and their current brood value, reproductive success and survival in a short-lived multi-brooded bird, the Eurasian hoopoe Upupa epops. The adrenocortical response to acute handling stress was correlated with the brood value within the individual (first and second broods of the year) and between individuals. Birds breeding late in the season mounted a lower total corticosterone response to acute stress than birds breeding earlier, while females showed lower levels than males. We observed a negative relationship between the adrenocortical stress response and rearing success or fledging success in females, as predicted by the brood-value hypothesis. However, we could not evidence a clear link between the adrenocortical stress response and survival. Future research testing the brood-value hypothesis and trade-offs between current reproduction and future survival should also measure free corticosterone and carefully differentiate between cross-sectional (i.e. between-individual) and individual-based experimental studies.

RevDate: 2021-10-21
CmpDate: 2013-03-14

Reichlin TS, Hobson KA, Van Wilgenburg SL, et al (2013)

Conservation through connectivity: can isotopic gradients in Africa reveal winter quarters of a migratory bird?.

Oecologia, 171(2):591-600.

Conservation of migratory wildlife requires knowledge of migratory connectivity between breeding and non-breeding locations. Stable isotopes in combination with geographical isotopic patterns (isoscapes) can provide inferences about migratory connectivity. This study examines whether such an approach can be used to infer wintering areas in sub-Saharan Africa, where we lack such knowledge for many species, but where this method has not been used widely. We measured δ (2)H, δ (13)C and δ (15)N in winter-grown feathers of a breeding Swiss and Spanish population of European hoopoe Upupa epops--a typical Palaearctic-Afrotropical migrant. δ (2)H values predicted that ~70 % of the hoopoes spent the non-breeding season in the western portion of their potential winter range. This was corroborated by a shallow east-west gradient in feather-δ (2)H values of museum specimens from known African origin across the potential winter range and by the recovery of Swiss hoopoes marked with geolocators. Hoopoes categorized as from eastern versus western regions of the wintering range were further delineated spatially using feather δ (13)C and δ (15)N. δ (15)N showed no trend, whereas adults were more enriched in (13)C in the western portion of the range, with eastern adults being in addition more depleted in (13)C than eastern juveniles. This suggests that eastern juveniles may have occupied more xeric habitats than sympatric adults. We demonstrated that stable isotopes, especially δ (2)H, could only very roughly delineate the winter distribution of a trans-Saharan Palaearctic migrant restricted primarily to the Sahelian and savanna belt south of the Sahara. Further refinements of precipitation isoscapes for Africa as well the development of isoscapes for δ (13)C and δ (15)N may improve assignment of this and other migrants.

RevDate: 2021-10-21
CmpDate: 2013-02-22

Ruiz-Rodríguez M, Valdivia E, Martín-Vivaldi M, et al (2012)

Antimicrobial activity and genetic profile of Enteroccoci isolated from hoopoes uropygial gland.

PloS one, 7(7):e41843.

Symbiotic microorganisms may be directly transferred from parents to offspring or acquired from a particular environment that animals may be able to select. If benefits for hosts vary among microbial strains, natural selection may favour hosts holding the most beneficial one. Enterococci symbionts living in the hoopoe (Upupa epops) uropygial gland are able to synthesise bacteriocins (antimicrobial peptides that inhibit the growth of competitor bacteria). We explored variability in genetic profile (through RAPD-PCR analyses) and antimicrobial properties (by performing antagonistic tests against ten bacterial indicator strains) of the different isolates obtained from the uropygial glands of hoopoe females and nestlings. We found that the genetic profile of bacterial isolates was related to antimicrobial activity, as well as to individual host identity and the nest from which samples were obtained. This association suggest that variation in the inhibitory capacity of Enterococci symbionts should be under selection.

RevDate: 2021-10-21
CmpDate: 2012-08-27

Berthier K, Leippert F, Fumagalli L, et al (2012)

Massive nest-box supplementation boosts fecundity, survival and even immigration without altering mating and reproductive behaviour in a rapidly recovered bird population.

PloS one, 7(4):e36028.

Habitat restoration measures may result in artificially high breeding density, for instance when nest-boxes saturate the environment, which can negatively impact species' demography. Potential risks include changes in mating and reproductive behaviour such as increased extra-pair paternity, conspecific brood parasitism, and polygyny. Under particular cicumstances, these mechanisms may disrupt reproduction, with populations dragged into an extinction vortex. With the use of nuclear microsatellite markers, we investigated the occurrence of these potentially negative effects in a recovered population of a rare secondary cavity-nesting farmland bird of Central Europe, the hoopoe (Upupa epops). High intensity farming in the study area has resulted in a total eradication of cavity trees, depriving hoopoes from breeding sites. An intensive nest-box campaign rectified this problem, resulting in a spectacular population recovery within a few years only. There was some concern, however, that the new, high artificially-induced breeding density might alter hoopoe mating and reproductive behaviour. As the species underwent a serious demographic bottleneck in the 1970-1990s, we also used the microsatellite markers to reconstitute the demo-genetic history of the population, looking in particular for signs of genetic erosion. We found i) a low occurrence of extra-pair paternity, polygyny and conspecific brood parasitism, ii) a high level of neutral genetic diversity (mean number of alleles and expected heterozygosity per locus: 13.8 and 83%, respectively) and, iii) evidence for genetic connectivity through recent immigration of individuals from well differentiated populations. The recent increase in breeding density did thus not induce so far any noticeable detrimental changes in mating and reproductive behaviour. The demographic bottleneck undergone by the population in the 1970s-1990s was furthermore not accompanied by any significant drop in neutral genetic diversity. Finally, genetic data converged with a concomitant demographic study to evidence that immigration strongly contributed to local population recovery.

RevDate: 2021-10-21
CmpDate: 2013-08-20

Williams JB, Shobrak M, Wilms TM, et al (2012)

Climate change and animals in Saudi Arabia.

Saudi journal of biological sciences, 19(2):121-130.

Global warming is occurring at an alarming rate and predictions are that air temperature (T a) will continue to increase during this century. Increases in T a as a result of unabated production of greenhouse gases in our atmosphere pose a threat to the distribution and abundance of wildlife populations worldwide. Although all the animals worldwide will likely be affected by global warming, diurnal animals in the deserts will be particularly threatened in the future because T as are already high, and animals have limited access to water. It is expected that Saudi Arabia will experience a 3-5 °C in T a over the next century. For predicting the consequences of global warming for animals, it is important to understand how individual species will respond to higher air temperatures. We think that populations will not have sufficient time to make evolutionary adjustments to higher T a, and therefore they will be forced to alter their distribution patterns, or make phenotypic adjustments in their ability to cope with high T a. This report examines how increases in T a might affect body temperature (T b) in the animals of arid regions. We chose three taxonomic groups, mammals, birds, and reptiles (Arabian oryx, Arabian spiny-tailed lizard, vultures, and hoopoe larks) from Saudi Arabia, an area in which T a often reaches 45 °C during midday in summer. When T a exceeds T b, animals must resort to behavioral and physiological methods to control their T b; failure to do so results in death. The observations of this study show that in many cases T b is already close to the upper lethal limit of around 47° C in these species and therefore allowing their T b to increase as T a increases are not an option. We conclude that global warming will have a detrimental impact on a wide range of desert animals, but in reality we know little about the ability of most animals to cope with change in T a. The data presented should serve as base-line information on T b of animals in the Kingdom for future scientists in Saudi Arabia as they explore the impact of global warming on animal species.

RevDate: 2021-10-20
CmpDate: 2011-11-14

Agarwal GP, Ahmad A, Rashmi A, et al (2011)

Bio-ecology of the louse, Upupicola upupae, infesting the Common Hoopoe, Upupa epops.

Journal of insect science (Online), 11:46.

Abstract The population characteristics of the louse, Upupicola upupae (Shrank) (Mallophaga: Philopteridae: Ishnocera), infesting the Common Hoopae, Upupa epops L. (Aves: Upupiformes), were recorded during 2007-08 in District Rampur, Uttar Pradesh India. The pattern of frequency distribution of the louse conformed to the negative binomial model. The lice and its nits were reared in vitro at 35 ± 1° C, 75-82 % RH, on a feather diet. The data obtained was used to construct the life table and to determine the intrinsic rate of natural increase (0.035 female/day), the net reproductive rate was 3.67 female eggs/female, the generation time was 37 days, and the doubling time of the population was 19 days. The chaetotaxy of the three nymphal instars has also been noted to record their diagnostic characteristics. Information on egg morphology and antennal sensilla is also presented.

RevDate: 2013-11-21
CmpDate: 2012-04-25

Schmid B, Chastel O, L Jenni (2011)

The prolactin response to an acute stressor in relation to parental care and corticosterone in a short-lived bird, the Eurasian hoopoe.

General and comparative endocrinology, 174(1):22-29.

Prolactin plays an important role in mediating parental care in birds, but little is known about changes in prolactin levels when animals disrupt their reproductive behaviour during emergency life-history stages. We investigated the variation of prolactin levels with breeding stage, sex, body condition and as a response to a standardized acute stressor in a small short-lived bird, the Eurasian hoopoe Upupa epops under natural field conditions. We found higher baseline levels of prolactin in females during the brooding phase than in their mates which feed them and their chicks at this stage. Moreover, this is the first report of a differential prolactin stress-response between sexes with contrasting parental care within a breeding phase. Capture, handling and restraint induced a clear decrease of prolactin levels which was less pronounced in females at the very early stage of brooding compared to females in later stages. In contrast, the prolactin stress response in males remained nearly constant over the breeding stages and was stronger than in females. Baseline levels of prolactin, but not handling-induced levels, were positively correlated with body condition. We found a weak relationship between the decrease in prolactin due to acute handling stress and handling-induced levels of corticosterone. Taken together, both baseline and stress response levels of prolactin were related to the amount of parental care, although we found no relationship with reproductive success. It appears that the response to an acute stressor in prolactin levels is finely tuned to parental duties and investment. Hence, prolactin appears to be involved in mediating the trade-off between current reproduction versus self-maintenance and future reproduction.

RevDate: 2021-10-20
CmpDate: 2012-05-11

Schaub M, Reichlin TS, Abadi F, et al (2012)

The demographic drivers of local population dynamics in two rare migratory birds.

Oecologia, 168(1):97-108.

The exchange of individuals among populations can have strong effects on the dynamics and persistence of a given population. Yet, estimation of immigration rates remains one of the greatest challenges for animal demographers. Little empirical knowledge exists about the effects of immigration on population dynamics. New integrated population models fitted using Bayesian methods enable simultaneous estimation of fecundity, survival and immigration, as well as the growth rate of a population of interest. We applied this novel analytical framework to the demography of two populations of long-distance migratory birds, hoopoe Upupa epops and wryneck Jynx torquilla, in a study area in south-western Switzerland. During 2002-2010, the hoopoe population increased annually by 11%, while the wryneck population remained fairly stable. Apparent juvenile and adult survival probability was nearly identical in both species, but fecundity and immigration were slightly higher in the hoopoe. Hoopoe population growth rate was strongly correlated with juvenile survival, fecundity and immigration, while that of wrynecks strongly correlated only with immigration. This indicates that demographic components impacting the arrival of new individuals into the populations were more important for their dynamics than demographic components affecting the loss of individuals. The finding that immigration plays a crucial role in the population growth rates of these two rare species emphasizes the need for a broad rather than local perspective for population studies, and the development of wide-scale conservation actions.

RevDate: 2021-10-20
CmpDate: 2011-03-07

Schaub M, Martinez N, Tagmann-Ioset A, et al (2010)

Patches of bare ground as a staple commodity for declining ground-foraging insectivorous farmland birds.

PloS one, 5(10):e13115.

Conceived to combat widescale biodiversity erosion in farmland, agri-environment schemes have largely failed to deliver their promises despite massive financial support. While several common species have shown to react positively to existing measures, rare species have continued to decline in most European countries. Of particular concern is the status of insectivorous farmland birds that forage on the ground. We modelled the foraging habitat preferences of four declining insectivorous bird species (hoopoe, wryneck, woodlark, common redstart) inhabiting fruit tree plantations, orchards and vineyards. All species preferred foraging in habitat mosaics consisting of patches of grass and bare ground, with an optimal, species-specific bare ground coverage of 30-70% at the foraging patch scale. In the study areas, birds thrived in intensively cultivated farmland where such ground vegetation mosaics existed. Not promoted by conventional agri-environment schemes until now, patches of bare ground should be implemented throughout grassland in order to prevent further decline of insectivorous farmland birds.

RevDate: 2022-03-21
CmpDate: 2011-01-11

Bächler E, Hahn S, Schaub M, et al (2010)

Year-round tracking of small trans-Saharan migrants using light-level geolocators.

PloS one, 5(3):e9566.

Since 1899 ringing (or banding) remained the most important source of information about migration routes, stopover sites and wintering grounds for birds that are too small to carry satellite-based tracking systems. Despite the large quantity of migrating birds ringed in their breeding areas in Europe, the number of ring recoveries from sub-Saharan Africa is very low and therefore the whereabouts of most small bird species outside the breeding season remain a mystery. With new miniaturized light-level geolocators it is now possible to look beyond the limits of ring recovery data. Here we show for the first time year round tracks of a near passerine trans-Saharan migrant, the European Hoopoe (Upupa epops epops). Three birds wintered in the Sahel zone of Western Africa where they remained stationary for most of the time. One bird chose a south-easterly route following the Italian peninsula. Birds from the same breeding population used different migration routes and wintering sites, suggesting a low level of migratory connectivity between breeding and wintering areas. Our tracking of a near passerine bird, the European Hoopoe, with light-level geolocators opens a new chapter in the research of Palaearctic-African bird migration as this new tool revolutionizes our ability to discover migration routes, stopover sites and wintering grounds of small birds.

RevDate: 2009-11-02
CmpDate: 2010-02-17

Ruiz-Rodríguez M, Valdivia E, Soler JJ, et al (2009)

Symbiotic bacteria living in the hoopoe's uropygial gland prevent feather degradation.

The Journal of experimental biology, 212(Pt 22):3621-3626.

Among potential agents that might damage bird feathers are certain microorganisms which secrete enzymes that digest keratin, as is the case of the ubiquitous bacterium Bacillus licheniformis, present in both the feathers and skin of wild birds. It is therefore a good candidate for testing the effects of bird defences against feather-degrading microorganisms. One of these defences is the oil secreted by the uropygial gland, which birds use to protect their feathers against parasites. In previous studies we have shown how Enterococcus faecalis strains isolated from nestling hoopoes exert antagonistic effects against B. licheniformis, mediated by the production of bacteriocins. Consequently we hypothesized that this enterococcus and the bacteriocins it engenders might act as a defence against feather-degrading microorganisms in hoopoes. We investigated this hypothesis in a series of laboratory experiments and evaluated the extent to which the keratinolytic effects caused by B. licheniformis were reduced by the E. faecalis MRR10-3 strain, isolated from hoopoes, and its bacteriocins. In different treatments, feathers or pure keratin was incubated with B. licheniformis, B. licheniformis together with E. faecalis MRR10-3, and B. licheniformis together with the bacteriocins produced by E. faecalis MRR10-3. Our results were in accordance with the predicted effects on hoopoe feathers. There was a significant decrease both in pure keratin loss and in feather degradation in the presence of the symbiotic bacterium or its bacteriocin. These results suggest that by preening their feathers hoopoes benefit from their symbiotic relationship with bacteriocin-producing enterococci, which constitute a chemical defence against feather degradation.

RevDate: 2021-10-20
CmpDate: 2010-03-01

Martín-Vivaldi M, Peña A, Peralta-Sánchez JM, et al (2010)

Antimicrobial chemicals in hoopoe preen secretions are produced by symbiotic bacteria.

Proceedings. Biological sciences, 277(1678):123-130.

Animals frequently use metabolites produced by symbiotic bacteria as agents against pathogens and parasites. Secretions from the preen gland of birds are used for this purpose, although its chemicals apparently are produced by the birds themselves. European hoopoes Upupa epops and green woodhoopoes Phoeniculus purpureus harbour symbiotic bacteria in the uropygial gland that might be partly responsible for the chemical composition of secretions. Here we investigate the antimicrobial activity of the volatile fraction of chemicals in hoopoe preen secretions, and, by means of experimental antibiotic injections, test whether symbiotic bacteria living within the uropygial gland are responsible for their production. Hoopoes produce two different kinds of secretions that differ drastically in their chemical composition. While the malodorous dark secretions produced by nestlings included a complex mix of volatiles, these chemicals did not appear in white secretions produced by non-nesting birds. All volatiles detected showed strong antibacterial activity, and a mixture of the chemicals at the concentrations measured in nestling glands inhibited the growth of all bacterial strains assayed. We found support for the hypothesized role of bacteria in the production of such antimicrobial chemicals because experimental clearance of bacteria from glands of nestlings with antibiotics resulted in secretions without most of the volatiles detected in control individuals. Thus, the presence of symbiotic bacteria in the uropygial gland provides hoopoes with potent antimicrobials for topical use.

RevDate: 2017-02-03
CmpDate: 2008-12-01

Inac S, Gorucu O, AH Pinar (2008)

The bird species of Kumasir lake (Kahramanmaras-Turkey) and a view of environmental ethics on sustainable wetland management.

Journal of environmental biology, 29(3):411-414.

Kumasir lake is located next to towns of Donuklu and Fatih, nine km west of Kahramanmaras city center the region of east Mediterranean, Turkey This lake is of crucial importance from the point of native and immigrant birds. We located 17 birdspecies in this area during our observations carried out in the spring and autumn of 2005-2006. These were Ciconia ciconia L., Anas platyrhynchos L., Accipiter nisus L., Accipiter brevipes L., Fulica atra L., Columba palumbus L., Merops apiaster L., Upupa epops L., Alauda arvensis L., Motacilla flava L., Turdus merula L., Acrocephalus scirpaceus L., Regulus regulus L., Garrulus glandarius L., Corvus corax L., Fringilla coelebs L., Hirundo rustica L.. Among observed 17 species; 6 of them were immigrant and remaining 11 of them were native birds. Kumasir lake is surrounded by wetland of Amik and Gavur lake. Since it was greatly dried, it was transformed to farmland. Consequently the birds lost most of theirnests and settlements. However not taken in the care of environmental ethic values, the wastewaters of the villages drain to lake reservoir; herbicides and insecticides used for agriculture are polluting the water reeds have been burned, the lake's reeds are getting dry by the irrigation for the farmland. So, the wetland ecosystem is being affected negatively by these factors. On the other hand, the birds are exposed to illegal and unlawful hunting. For this reasons, this lake must be taken into a management regime of sustainable wetland (protection profiting balance) and used techniques of participation planning via the process of sustainable natural resources and planning.

RevDate: 2018-11-13
CmpDate: 2006-08-30

Martín-Platero AM, Valdivia E, Ruíz-Rodríguez M, et al (2006)

Characterization of antimicrobial substances produced by Enterococcus faecalis MRR 10-3, isolated from the uropygial gland of the hoopoe (Upupa epops).

Applied and environmental microbiology, 72(6):4245-4249.

The uropygial gland (preen gland) is a holocrine secretory gland situated at the base of the tail in birds which produces a hydrophobic fatty secretion. In certain birds, such as the hoopoe, Upupa epops, the composition of this secretion is influenced by both seasonal and sexual factors, becoming darker and more malodorous in females and in their nestlings during the nesting phase. The secretion is spread throughout the plumage when the bird preens itself, leaving its feathers flexible and waterproof. It is also thought to play a role in defending the bird against predators and parasites. We have isolated from the uropygial secretion of a nestling a bacterium that grows in monospecific culture which we have identified unambiguously by phenotypic and genotypic means as Enterococcus faecalis. The strain in question produces antibacterial substances that are active against all gram-positive bacteria assayed and also against some gram-negative strains. Its peptide nature identifies it as a bacteriocin within the group known as enterocins. Two peptides were purified to homogeneity (MR10A and MR10B), and matrix-assisted laser desorption ionization-time of flight (mass spectrometry) analysis showed masses of 5201.58 and 5207.7 Da, respectively. Amino acid sequencing of both peptides revealed high similarity with enterocin L50A and L50B (L. M. Cintas, P. Casaus, H. Holo, P. E. Hernández, I. F. Nes, and L. S. Håvarstein, J. Bacteriol. 180:1988-1994, 1998). PCR amplification of total DNA from strain MRR10-3 with primers for the L50A/B structural genes and sequencing of the amplified fragment revealed almost identical sequences, except for a single conservative change in residue 38 (Glu-->Asp) in MR10A and two changes in residues 9 (Thr-->Ala) and 15 (Leu-->Phe) in MR10B. This is the first time that the production of bacteriocins by a bacterium isolated from the uropygial gland has been described. The production of these broad-spectrum antibacterial substances by an enterococcal strain living in the uropygial gland may be important to the hygiene of the nest and thus to the health of the eggs and chicks.

RevDate: 2019-06-07
CmpDate: 2004-06-28

Haugen MJ, Tieleman BI, JB Williams (2003)

Phenotypic flexibility in cutaneous water loss and lipids of the stratum corneum.

The Journal of experimental biology, 206(Pt 20):3581-3588.

When vertebrates invaded land during the Carboniferous period, they were exposed not only to new ecological opportunities but also to a desiccating environment. To maintain cellular water homeostasis, natural selection modified the integument of pioneering terrestrial animals, enabling them to reduce water loss through the skin. In desert environments, where ambient temperatures (T(a)) can reach 50 degrees C, relative humidities are low and drinking water is scarce, integumentary modifications that reduce cutaneous water loss (CWL) could be fundamental to survival. Previous research has shown that hoopoe larks (Alaemon alaudipes) from the Arabian desert reduced CWL when acclimated to 35 degrees C compared with individuals at 15 degrees C, but skylarks (Alauda arvensis) and woodlarks (Lullula arborea), from The Netherlands, and Dunn's larks (Eremalauda dunni), also from the Arabian desert, did not. Here, we test the idea that hoopoe larks acclimated to 35 degrees C would alter the lipid composition of their stratum corneum (SC), resulting in a decrease in CWL, but that skylarks, woodlarks and Dunn's larks would not. Specifically, we hypothesized that hoopoe larks, acclimated to 35 degrees C, would increase the proportions of polar ceramide content and decrease the proportions of free fatty acids in their SC compared with individuals acclimated to 15 degrees C. Results showed that hoopoe larks at 35 degrees C had lower CWL and higher proportions of total ceramides but lower proportions of free fatty acids and sterols in their SC. We demonstrate that adjustments in ratios of lipid classes in the SC are associated with changes in CWL in hoopoe larks.

RevDate: 2013-11-21
CmpDate: 2003-06-17

Tieleman BI, JB Williams (2002)

Cutaneous and respiratory water loss in larks from arid and mesic environments.

Physiological and biochemical zoology : PBZ, 75(6):590-599.

Birds from deserts generally have lower total evaporative water loss (TEWL), the sum of cutaneous (CWL) and respiratory water loss (RWL), than species from mesic areas. We investigated the role of CWL and RWL as a function of air temperature (T(a)) in hoopoe larks (Alaemon alaudipes) and Dunn's larks (Eremalauda dunni) from the Arabian Desert and skylarks (Alauda arvensis) and woodlarks (Lullula arborea) from temperate mesic grasslands. The proportional contribution of CWL to TEWL in all larks at moderate T(a) ranged from 50% to 70%. At high T(a) (40 degrees -45 degrees C), larks enhanced CWL by only 45%-78% and relied on an increase in RWL by 676%-2,733% for evaporative cooling. Surface-specific CWL at 25 degrees C was 29% lower in the arid-zone species than in the mesic larks. When acclimated to constant T(a), 15 degrees C-acclimated hoopoe larks increased CWL by 22% compared with 35 degrees C-acclimated birds, but the other species did not change CWL. This study is consistent with the hypothesis that larks from deserts have a reduced CWL at moderate and low T(a) but provided no support for the hypothesis that at high T(a) larks from arid regions rely more on CWL than larks from mesic environments. Interspecific differences in CWL cannot be attributed to acclimation to environmental temperature and are possibly the result of genetic differences due to natural selection or of phenotypically plastic responses to divergent environments during ontogeny.

RevDate: 2006-11-15
CmpDate: 2002-11-25

Tieleman BI, Williams JB, ME Buschur (2002)

Physiological adjustments to arid and mesic environments in larks (Alaudidae).

Physiological and biochemical zoology : PBZ, 75(3):305-313.

Because deserts are characterized by low food availability, high ambient temperature extremes, and absence of drinking water, one might expect that birds that live in these conditions exhibit a lower basal metabolic rate (BMR), reduced total evaporative water loss (TEWL), and greater ability to cope with high air temperatures than their mesic counterparts. To minimize confounding effects of phylogeny, we compared the physiological performance of four species of larks at ambient temperatures (T(a)'s) ranging from 0 degrees to 50 degrees C: hoopoe larks (Alaemon alaudipes) and Dunn's larks (Eremalauda dunni) live in hot and dry deserts, whereas skylarks (Alauda arvensis) and woodlarks (Lullula arborea) occur in temperate mesic areas. Mass-adjusted BMR and TEWL were indistinguishable between hoopoe lark and Dunn's lark and between skylark and woodlark. When grouping the data of the two desert larks in one set and the data of the two mesic larks in another, desert larks are shown to have 43% lower BMR levels and 27% lower TEWL values than the mesic species. Their body temperatures (T(b)'s) were 1.1 degrees C lower, and the minimal dry heat transfer coefficients (h) were 26% below values for the mesic larks. When T(a) exceeded T(b), the h of hoopoe larks and Dunn's larks was high and indistinguishable from h at 40 degrees C, in contrast to the prediction that h should be decreased to minimize heat gain through conductance, convection, or radiation from the environment when T(a) exceeds T(b).

RevDate: 2020-09-30
CmpDate: 2012-10-02

Williams JB, BI Tieleman (2002)

Ecological and evolutionary physiology of desert birds: a progress report.

Integrative and comparative biology, 42(1):68-75.

The adaptive significance of mechanisms of energy and water conservation among species of desert rodents, which avoid temperature extremes by remaining within a burrow during the day, is well established. Conventional wisdom holds that arid-zone birds, diurnal organisms that endure the brunt of their environment, occupy these desert climates because of the possession of physiological design features common to all within the class Aves. We review studies that show that desert birds may have evolved specific features to deal with hot desert conditions including: a reduced basal metabolic rate (BMR) and field metabolic rate (FMR), and lower total evaporative water loss (TEWL) and water turnover (WTO).Previous work on the comparative physiology of desert birds relied primarily on information gathered on species from the deserts of the southwestern U.S., which are semi-arid habitats of recent geologic origin. We include data on species from Old World deserts, which are geologically older than those in the New World, and place physiological responses along an aridity axis that includes mesic, semi-arid, arid, and hyperarid environments.The physiological differences between desert and mesic birds that we have identified using the comparative method could arise as a result of acclimation to different environments, of genetic change mediated by selection, or both. We present data on the flexibility of BMR and TEWL in Hoopoe Larks that suggest that phenotypic adjustments in these variables can be substantial. Finally, we suggest that linkages between the physiology of individual organism and its life-history are fundamental to the understanding of life-history evolution.

RevDate: 2022-02-16
CmpDate: 2000-12-22

Williams JB, BI Tieleman (2000)

Flexibility in basal metabolic rate and evaporative water loss among hoopoe larks exposed to different environmental temperatures.

The Journal of experimental biology, 203(Pt 20):3153-3159.

The 'energy demand' hypothesis for short-term adjustments in basal metabolic rate (BMR) posits that birds adjust the size of their internal organs relative to food intake, a correlate of energy demand. We tested this hypothesis on hoopoe larks (Alaemon alaudipes), inhabitants of the Arabian desert, by acclimating birds for 3 weeks at 15 degrees C and at 36 degrees C, then measuring their BMR and total evaporative water loss (TEWL). Thereafter, we determined the dry masses of their brain, heart, liver, kidney, stomach, intestine and muscles of the pectoral region. Although mean body mass did not differ initially between the two groups, after 3 weeks, birds in the 15 degrees C group had gained mass (44.1+/-6.5 g), whereas larks in the 36 degrees C group had maintained a constant mass (36.6+/-3.6 g; means +/- s.d., N=6). Birds in the 15 degrees C group had a mean BMR of 46.8+/-6.9 kJ day(-1), whereas birds in the 36 degrees C group had a BMR of 32.9+/-6.3 kJ day(-1), values that were significantly different when we controlled for differences in body mass. When measured at 35 degrees C, larks in the cold-exposure group had a TEWL of 3.55+/-0.60 g H(2)O day(-)(1), whereas TEWL for birds in the 36 degrees C group averaged 2.23+/-0.28 g H(2)O day(-1), a difference of 59.2%. Mass-independent TEWL differed significantly between groups. Larks in the 15 degrees C group had a significantly larger liver, kidney and intestine than larks in the 36 degrees C group. The total increase in organ mass contributed 14.3% towards the total mass increment in the cold exposure group. Increased food intake among larks in the cold group apparently resulted in enlargement of some of the internal organs, and the increase in mass of these organs required a higher rate of oxygen uptake to support them. As oxygen demands increased, larks apparently lost more evaporative water, but the relationship between increases in BMR and TEWL remains unresolved.

RevDate: 2013-05-02
CmpDate: 1994-10-03

Ashour A, Lewis J, SE Ahmed (1994)

A new species of Neyraia Joyeux et Timon-David, 1934 (Cestoda: Dilepididae) from the Egyptian wild birds.

Journal of the Egyptian Society of Parasitology, 24(2):457-462.

A new species of the genus Neyraia Joyeux et Timon-David, 1934 is described from Egyptian wild birds; Neyraia epops from the hoopoe Upupa epops. The new species is compared and with the other related species of the genus. The erection of the new species was based primarily on differences in the number of testes and number of the rostellar hooks.

RevDate: 2017-11-16
CmpDate: 1995-04-27

Arvide Cambra LM (1993)

[An example of practical medicine in al-Andalus: Abū-l- 'Alā' Zuhr's Kitāb muŷarrabāt al-jawāss (c. 1060-1131)].

Dynamis (Granada, Spain), 13:295-346.

This article reports a preliminary study of Abu-l-Ala: his life, his works and his significance as a writer, scientist and physician. All existing Arab manuscripts on the Kitāb muŷarrabāt al-jawāss are cited, and Arabic manuscript no. 520 from the Bodleian Library in Oxford is described. Finally, the translation is given, and folios 41v., 42r., 52v., 53r., 81v., 82v., 93r., 94v., 97v., 100r. and 100v. reproduced, from the Bodleian Library manuscript of the Kitāb muŷarrabāt al-jawāss. This material includes the peculiarities and therapeutic features of plants and animals such as elecampane, love-in-a-mist, ivy, the goat, the ostrich, the hoopoe and laudanum. The text reproduced here, as well as the work in general, contains large doses of quackery.

RevDate: 2013-05-02
CmpDate: 1992-12-22

Ahmed AK (1992)

Isospora solimanae sp. nov. from the Egyptian hoopoe (Upupa epops major).

Journal of the Egyptian Society of Parasitology, 22(3):583-589.

Isospora solimanae (sp. nov.) is recorded for the first time infecting the Egyptian hoopoe (Upupa epops major). Unsporulated as well as sporulated oocysts were studied, photographed and compared with other isosporan infections of related birds. Site of infection and invasion limits were determined among naturally infected hoopoes and represented diagramatically. The rate of infection was congruent to 37.5%, and its severity considered to be non-pathogenic, since no remarkable lesions were observed. No extra-intestinal site of parasite development was recorded.

RevDate: 2006-11-15
CmpDate: 1993-05-13

Cancrini G, Balbo T, A Iori (1991)

[A new Habronematidae parasite of Acryllium vulturinum: Sicarius renatae sp.n].

Parassitologia, 33(2-3):133-136.

A new Nematode Habronematidae, Sicarius renatae sp.n., is described in Acryllium vulturinum from Somalia. This new species can be distinguished from S. dipterum (Popova, 1927), S. hoopoe Sharma, 1971 and S. caudatus Quentin and Wertheim, 1975 by its smaller body dimensions, the size of the spicula, the distribution and number of male caudal papillae, and by the morphology of the female posterior end.

RevDate: 2013-05-02
CmpDate: 1982-01-20

Omran LA, El-Naffar MK, AM Mandour (1981)

Biuterinoides aegypti, a new cestode from the intestine of Upupa epops.

Journal of the Egyptian Society of Parasitology, 11(1):171-174.

RevDate: 2019-09-13
CmpDate: 1981-04-21

Sharma SN, KK Baxi (1980)

Isolation of a velogenic strain of Newcastle disease virus from Upupa epops (Hoopoe).

Zentralblatt fur Veterinarmedizin. Reihe B. Journal of veterinary medicine. Series B, 27(8):677-679.

RevDate: 2010-11-18
CmpDate: 1978-02-18

Mester H (1977)

[Incidence of Upupicola upupae in the crest of the hoopoe].

Angewandte Parasitologie, 18(4):215-219.

Hopoes belonging to waves of migrants through the Balearic Islands in August and September showed high rates of infestation by Upupicola upupae (77--85 p. c.). The parasite species was almost exclusively confined to the long and mobile feathers of the bird's crown. And at this time of the year the Mallophaga had put their egg cases on the crest feathers, too. A mean of 7 feather-lice was found at this localisation in 8 positive cases sampled. As some of the birds were moulting just these parts of their plumage, a relative high loss of the lice egg masses had to be expected. Evidently, in these cases, the lice didn't adaptively synchronise laying with the period during which moulting occurs. The wings of hopoes are conspiciously barred glossy-black and white. Here the relative dark coloured lice were sitting predominantly in a dark feather area. In these places they were much less visble than on a neighbouring white area. Thus the parasites hide themselves according to their colour.

RevDate: 2013-04-05
CmpDate: 1976-10-02

Rak H, Anwar M, A Niak (1975)

The species of mallophaga in wild birds in Iran.

Bulletin de la Societe de pathologie exotique et de ses filiales, 68(6):588-591.

Up to date 2 species of Mallophaga have been reported from birds in Iran. Further studies in Tehran area showed that the wild birds harbour more lice. The following species of Mallophage are reported for the first time from birds in Iran. Anaticola crassicornis from Anas clypeata, Laemobothrion maximum from Falco tinnunculus Laemobothrion sp. from Aquila chrysaetos Alcedoecus annulatus from Alcedo athis, Colpocephalum pectinatum and Strigiphilus sp. from Streptopelia turtur, Amrysidea fulvomaculata from Coturnix coturnix, philopterus picae from pica pica, Philopterus ocellatus and Colpocephalum pectinatum from Athene noctua, Philopterus sp. from Turdus ruficollis, Upupicola upupae from Upupa epops, Amyrsidea hexapilosus from Phasianus colchicus, Colpocephalum sp. from Falco cherrug.

RevDate: 2016-11-23
CmpDate: 1975-03-14

Singh SP (1974)

Histoenzymological demonstration of acid phosphatase in the gizzard of Cinnyris asiatica, Megalaima haemacephala and Upupa epops.

Acta histochemica, 50(1):43-46.

RevDate: 2008-11-21
CmpDate: 1973-09-12

Singh SP (1973)

Comparative histoenzymatic studies on the distribution of alkaline and acid phosphatases in the liver and pancreas of a few birds viz., Upupa epops (fam. Upupidae), Cinnyris asiatica (fam. Nectariniidae) and Halcyon smyrnensis (fam. Alcedinidae).

Acta histochemica, 45(1):102-108.

RevDate: 2019-05-13
CmpDate: 1996-12-01



Transactions of the Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, 59:280-284.

RJR Experience and Expertise


Robbins holds BS, MS, and PhD degrees in the life sciences. He served as a tenured faculty member in the Zoology and Biological Science departments at Michigan State University. He is currently exploring the intersection between genomics, microbial ecology, and biodiversity — an area that promises to transform our understanding of the biosphere.


Robbins has extensive experience in college-level education: At MSU he taught introductory biology, genetics, and population genetics. At JHU, he was an instructor for a special course on biological database design. At FHCRC, he team-taught a graduate-level course on the history of genetics. At Bellevue College he taught medical informatics.


Robbins has been involved in science administration at both the federal and the institutional levels. At NSF he was a program officer for database activities in the life sciences, at DOE he was a program officer for information infrastructure in the human genome project. At the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, he served as a vice president for fifteen years.


Robbins has been involved with information technology since writing his first Fortran program as a college student. At NSF he was the first program officer for database activities in the life sciences. At JHU he held an appointment in the CS department and served as director of the informatics core for the Genome Data Base. At the FHCRC he was VP for Information Technology.


While still at Michigan State, Robbins started his first publishing venture, founding a small company that addressed the short-run publishing needs of instructors in very large undergraduate classes. For more than 20 years, Robbins has been operating The Electronic Scholarly Publishing Project, a web site dedicated to the digital publishing of critical works in science, especially classical genetics.


Robbins is well-known for his speaking abilities and is often called upon to provide keynote or plenary addresses at international meetings. For example, in July, 2012, he gave a well-received keynote address at the Global Biodiversity Informatics Congress, sponsored by GBIF and held in Copenhagen. The slides from that talk can be seen HERE.


Robbins is a skilled meeting facilitator. He prefers a participatory approach, with part of the meeting involving dynamic breakout groups, created by the participants in real time: (1) individuals propose breakout groups; (2) everyone signs up for one (or more) groups; (3) the groups with the most interested parties then meet, with reports from each group presented and discussed in a subsequent plenary session.


Robbins has been engaged with photography and design since the 1960s, when he worked for a professional photography laboratory. He now prefers digital photography and tools for their precision and reproducibility. He designed his first web site more than 20 years ago and he personally designed and implemented this web site. He engages in graphic design as a hobby.

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The next you see a conversation where everyone is trying to figure out why the hoopoe is the only bird species to be explicitly listed individually among forbidden food in Deuteronomy and Leviticus, you could be the one to jump in and provide the answer (being a know-it-all is a great way to change your social status)... But only if you know something about hoopoe biology. R. Robbins

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