In order to evaluate the genetic diversity and to recover the gene pool of the Knifefish Notopterus notopterus in the Mekong River delta, we used protein electrophoresis SDS-PAGE. Following the detection of different genital papillae of mature males and females during the spawning season, we initially applied artificial propagating medicine by using hormone LRH-A3+Dom type to deduce whether fertilization and hatching occurred or not. Results showed that most of the protein profile samples were similar to each other, indicating that the genetic diversity of this species is already narrow and likely to decline further in the near future. The inducing hormone LRH-A3+Dom was applied at three different decisive rates of 70μg, 100μg, and 150μg LRH-A3/kg for 10 female fish at half of the decisive rates used for three male fish. The results revealed that inducing hormone used at a rate of 150mg LRH-A3/kg gave the highest percentages of fertilization and hatching (100%). Given our initial successful results of artificial propagation, and the species' economically important food value, this species could become an important fish species, commercially speaking, in the near future.
In Nishimeya Village, Aomori Prefecture, northern Honshu, Japan, where arable lands and apple orchards have been heavily damaged by Japanese Monkeys Macaca fuscata, a project was conducted to reduce the damage by involving eighty-three volunteers to patrol and drive monkeys away in the autumns of 2002 and 2003. The ecological and ethological effects of this project were evaluated by radio-tracking a troop composed of around 40 individuals, with two radio-marked individuals between August 2001 and July 2004. The monkey patrols resulted in: 1) shifting part of the troop memberships into the inner forested area, 2) heightening their sensitivity to humans, and 3) changing their pattern of habitat use. Although such influences of the patrols on the animals may contribute to reducing crop damage, no range shift was found and the effect disappeared with time after the end of the project.
DNA extracted from the dental pulp of Sika Deer teeth was used for sexing wild fawns. Based on the difference of the base sequence in the sex-determining region Y (SRY) gene, between sika deer and other mammals, a pair of specific primers was designed for PCR. Six of fifteen fawns were judged to be male and nine female, based on the presence or absence of the SRY gene in PCR products.
A study on the habitat selection and forest edge use of Japanese monkey (Macaca fuscata) was conducted between November 1991 and September 1994 in the Nikko and Imaichi area, central Honshu, Japan. Three monkey troops were radio-tracked and the location data were split into two seasons (leafy/leafless season) for the habitat selection analysis. Vegetation cover was measured from forest edge to its interior to quantify the change of food availability in terms of distance from the edge. Results showed that throughout the year deciduous broad-leaved forests were preferred (leafy season; x^2=93.5, df=5, p<0.001: leafless season; x^2=95.4, df=5, p<0.001), whereas evergreen coniferous plantations were neither preferred nor avoided. Monkeys preferred the forest edges, especially, within 50m from the edge, of all forest types except deciduous broad-leaved forests. In the leafy season, monkeys used deciduous forest edges in accordance with its availability up to 200m interior from its edge. Concentration of understory cover to its forest edge was most distinct in coniferous evergreen plantations. Habitat use patterns corresponded with seasonal food resource distribution patterns in each forest type. When monkeys used agricultural lands, the forest edges and agricultural lands might function to provide cover and food sources, respectively. Thus, in addition to the value of resources provided by singular habitat types, combinations of different habitat types may increase the variety of available resources for Japanese monkeys.