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In April 1996, a wildfire (Lone Fire) denuded >90% of the vegetation in a 237-km2 area on the Four Peaks “sky island” in the Mazatzal Mountains in central Arizona. We trapped small mammals from 1997 to 1999 in both burned and unburned interior chaparral and Madrean evergreen forest vegetation to investigate differences in small mammal communities post-fire. In 15,173 live trap nights and 26,214 pitfall trap nights overall species richness (P=0.76) and mammal abundance did not differ (P=0.53) among vegetation types. However, species richness differed (P=0.04) among seasons. We found that a minimum of four small mammal species were influenced by fire. Dipodomys merriami and D. ordii abundances were higher (P=0.011 and P=0.064, respectively) in burned chaparral than in unburned chaparral, while Chaetodipus baileyi abundances were higher (P=0.05) in unburned chaparral than burned chaparral. Peromyscus eremicus differed seasonally (χ2=9.22, P=0.056) as they were captured more as post-fire time increased. Implications of catastrophic fires with high vegetation mortality and management considerations are discussed.
Health-care expenses for children with special health-care needs (CHSCN) can be large and unpredictable. The purpose of this study was to investigate the medical expenditures for CSHCN. A retrospective analysis was conducted of paid claims from multiple billing and payment sources for 1,130 children served at a regional medical clinic for CSHCN. Paid claims were merged for the state-funded clinic, a Medicaid managed-care plan, and a private HMO. Health-care expenditures totaled over $8 million during the study year. Eighteen children accounted for 46% of the expenditures. Multiple payment sources were needed to accurately estimate the cost of care for CSHCN. The greatest costs were associated with catastrophic illness and hospitalization for a few very ill children.
This study represents the first systematic and permanent bird research conducted in Sierra de Picachos, Nuevo Leon, Mexico. It was carried out from September 1997 to May 2000. There were 39 families, 101 genera with a grand total of 146 species recorded. The ecological distributions of the species by community were: pine (Pinus) forest 23 species; oak (Quercus) forest 50 species; shrubland and ponds 135 species. The species seasonal distributions were: 136 in spring, 39 in summer, 36 in fall, and 83 in winter. All the guild groups were well represented. There were 14 species identified as protected by Mexican law.
Slash-pile burns associated with restoration thinning treatments may change soil characteristics resulting in broad implications for ecosystem functions, processes, and management. This study explores the impacts of size and burning of slash piles on various soil physical characteristics. At the Arboretum in Flagstaff, Arizona, the experiment consisted of burned, unburned, and control plots crossed with large and small sizes of slash piles. Slash from the unburned plots was removed and chipped for disposal elsewhere. The specific soil physical characteristics measured include water infiltration rate, soil moisture content, bulk density, and porosity. The results show no differences in water infiltration rates in the soils under the different treatments, leading us to conclude that burning slash piles did not form a hydrophobic layer in the soil. Soil bulk densities are lower, albeit insignificantly, in unburned pile plots than in burned pile and control plots. Hence, management decisions should recognize that the effects of burning piled slash during drought periods may be slight on these soil physical properties.
Cystacanths of oligacanthorhynchid Acanthocephala are reported for the first time from the Yaqui blackhead snake, Tantilla yaquia. Oligacanthorhynchid acanthocephalans are parasitic as adults in terrestrial mammals and birds; snakes can serve as paratenic (transport) hosts. Development of cystacanth to adult occurs when a paratenic host is eaten by an appropriate definitive host. Tantilla yaquia is the ninth snake species from Arizona reported to harbor oligacanthorhynchid cystacanths and represents a new host record.
One hundred seventy species in 57 lichen genera are reported from the Parashant National Monument. Collections were made from 16 sites visited during the study. Data reported in this study correlates with previous studies from the surrounding areas, and 38 species are reported as new to this region in northwestern Arizona. In addition, a second record of Letharia vulpina is reported for the state. The data presented here serve as a baseline for future studies related to lichen biodiversity or air quality monitoring in northwestern Arizona.
This note reports on the additions of nine native and five non-native species to the known vascular plant flora of the Pinaleño Mountains. Poa trivialis is reported as new to the state; the collections of Stellaria umbellata and Juncus mertensianus are range extensions from northern Arizona.
Myocardial infarction potentially alters mitral valve (MV) protein synthesis resulting in MV deterioration. Angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors may decrease MV protein synthesis following infarction, thereby delaying surgical intervention and facilitating repair. To investigate this hypothesis Lewis rats were randomized into five groups: non-surgical (n=7), sham surgery (n=7), sham surgery ACE-inhibitor (n=7), infarct (n=10), and infarct ACE-inhibitor (n=10). For both infarct groups, the left anterior descending artery was ligated. Both ACE-inhibitor groups received Captopril. At sacrifice, the MVs were evaluated for heat shock protein 70 (HSP-70) and procollagen. MV HSP-70 levels were significantly increased in both infarct groups (p<0.05). Procollagen was increased in both infarct groups (p=0.07). Trends towards decreased HSP-70 and procollagen in the infarct group treated with ACE-inhibitors were observed. In summary, myocardial infarction increases MV HSP-70 (stress protein) and procollagen synthesis. Pharmocologic manipulation (ACE inhibition) may impact surgical management and prove beneficial in controlling the MV disease process following infarction.
Intraspecific competition among blackbrush (Coleogyne ramosissima Torr.) seedlings was quantitatively investigated in an environmentally controlled glasshouse. Mortality of blackbrush seedlings was greatest in small-sized pots with high densities, while mortality was lowest in large-sized pots when growing alone. Significant interactions were detected between density and pot size (available growing space) for root:shoot ratio, root and shoot biomass, and shoot water potential among surviving seedlings. When examining density and pot size factors independently, significant differences were found in root:shoot ratio, shoot height, root and shoot biomass, leaf length, and shoot water potential of seedlings. Results of this common garden study revealed that mortality of blackbrush seedlings occurred in the absence of intraspecific competition, and that growth characteristics were significantly reduced with increasing neighbor density and decreasing available growing space among surviving seedlings.
Arlington and Gillespie shield volcanoes erupted near the Gila River in the late Pliocene to Early Pleistocene and are located 60 and 70 km west of Phoenix, AZ, respectively. Each shield consists of 3–4 alkali olivine basalt units emplaced in three eruptive phases of decreasing volume. The lava flows of the initial phase of each shield flowed into the river channel. At Arlington the channel was shifted ∼0.5–1 km south. At Gillespie the channel was dammed by lavas and possibly formed a lake. The river cut a new channel located ∼1.5 km to the east. The northern margin of Arlington is mantled by alluvium, possibly due to a change in the Hassayampa River base level related to the formation of the paleolake. Although alluvial sediments deposited on Arlington probably indicate that it is older than Gillespie, both shields exhibit comparable weathering, incision by ephemeral washes, and pedogenic carbonate accumulation. There is no evidence of weathering between basalt units. This suggests that the eruptions were essentially monogenetic and that some of the radiogenic dates that span from 3.28–1.28 Ma for Arlington and 4.3–1.35 Ma for Gillespie are inaccurate.