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Speleology in Kazakhstan

Shakalov on 04 Jul, 2018
Hello everyone!   I pleased to invite you to the official site of Central Asian Karstic-Speleological commission ("Kaspeko")   There, we regularly publish reports about our expeditions, articles and reports on speleotopics, lecture course for instructors, photos etc. ...

New publications on hypogene speleogenesis

Klimchouk on 26 Mar, 2012
Dear Colleagues, This is to draw your attention to several recent publications added to KarstBase, relevant to hypogenic karst/speleogenesis: Corrosion of limestone tablets in sulfidic ground-water: measurements and speleogenetic implications Galdenzi,

The deepest terrestrial animal

Klimchouk on 23 Feb, 2012
A recent publication of Spanish researchers describes the biology of Krubera Cave, including the deepest terrestrial animal ever found: Jordana, Rafael; Baquero, Enrique; Reboleira, Sofía and Sendra, Alberto. ...

Caves - landscapes without light

akop on 05 Feb, 2012
Exhibition dedicated to caves is taking place in the Vienna Natural History Museum   The exhibition at the Natural History Museum presents the surprising variety of caves and cave formations such as stalactites and various crystals. ...

Did you know?

That limnology is the study of lakes [16].?

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Featured articles from Cave & Karst Science Journals
Chemistry and Karst, White, William B.
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Featured articles from other Geoscience Journals
Karst environment, Culver D.C.
Mushroom Speleothems: Stromatolites That Formed in the Absence of Phototrophs, Bontognali, Tomaso R.R.; D’Angeli Ilenia M.; Tisato, Nicola; Vasconcelos, Crisogono; Bernasconi, Stefano M.; Gonzales, Esteban R. G.; De Waele, Jo
Calculating flux to predict future cave radon concentrations, Rowberry, Matt; Marti, Xavi; Frontera, Carlos; Van De Wiel, Marco; Briestensky, Milos
Microbial mediation of complex subterranean mineral structures, Tirato, Nicola; Torriano, Stefano F.F;, Monteux, Sylvain; Sauro, Francesco; De Waele, Jo; Lavagna, Maria Luisa; D’Angeli, Ilenia Maria; Chailloux, Daniel; Renda, Michel; Eglinton, Timothy I.; Bontognali, Tomaso Renzo Rezio
Evidence of a plate-wide tectonic pressure pulse provided by extensometric monitoring in the Balkan Mountains (Bulgaria), Briestensky, Milos; Rowberry, Matt; Stemberk, Josef; Stefanov, Petar; Vozar, Jozef; Sebela, Stanka; Petro, Lubomir; Bella, Pavel; Gaal, Ludovit; Ormukov, Cholponbek;
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Your search for predation (Keyword) returned 9 results for the whole karstbase:
Interaction between competition and predation in cave stream communities., 1975, Culver David C.
Predation by salamander larvae (Gyrinophilus porphyriticus) reduces the density of one of its prey (the isopod Asellus recurvatus) but increases the density of the other (the amphipod Crangonyx antennatus in a Virginia cave stream. This happens because predation on the isopod reduces its competitive effect on the amphipod. Both prey populations tend to occur more frequently in refugia when predators are present. In another cave where there are no prey refugia, the predator reduces the density of both species. It appears that it is easier for a predator to invade a community than to reach a stable equilibrium with the prey, if the prey have refugia, persistence of the prey system and the predator/prey system is constrained more by low population sizes than by the instability of the interaction coefficients.

The ecology of a predaceous troglobitic beetle, Neaphaenops tellkampfii (Coleoptera: Carabidae, Trechinae). II Adult seasonality, feeding and recruitment., 1975, Kane Thomas C. , Norton Russell M. , Poulson Thomas L.
In deep cave areas with loose substrate and sufficient moisture, the life history of Neaphaenops tellkampfii (Coleoptera: Carabidae, Trechinae) is synchronized with the seasonal pattern of its primary food sources, the eggs and first instar nymphs of the cave cricket Hadenoecus subterraneus (Orthoptera Gryllacridoidea, Rhaphidophoridae). Neaphaenops reproduction coincides with an order of magnitude increase in Hadenoecus egg input in the spring. Our 46 observations of predation by Neaphaenops suggest some switching to other cave animals as cricket egg and first instar nymph densities decrease during the summer. Neaphaenops life history in areas of Hadenoecus egg input is as follows: (1) female Neaphaenops reach maximum fecundity at the time of the maximum density of frst instar Hadenoecus nymphs; (2) early instar Neaphaenops larvae appear in late summer and fall; (3) last instar Neaphaenops larvae appear in early spring and pupation occurs shortly thereafter; (4) lightly coloured teneral adults emerge two to three months later, a time consistent with laboratory estimates of the length of the pupal stage. Seasonal changes in sex ratio due to differential mortality appear to be consistent with this seasonal pattern. A comparison of Neaphaenops with two other species of carabid cricket egg predators suggests the importance of seasonal food abundance in determining life history seasonality. Darlingtonea kentuckensis has a food resource pattern which appears identical to that of Neaphaenops, and the life history seasonality is also parallel. Rhadine subterranea, however, seems to have a much more equitable food input throughout the year, and appears to have an aseasonal life history.

The vertical distribution of stygorhithral ciliates in the Fulda-River (Contribution to the knowledge of mesopsammal ciliates in running freshwater)., 1976, Lupkes Gunther
19 species of ciliates were found in interstitial biotopes of the Fulda Headwater. Two of these were new: Haplocaulus hengsti, n.sp. and Epistylis rotti, n.sp. (Peritrichida). The number of ciliate species decreases from the surface down so deeper layers; in a depth of 50 cm, only three species were found: Haplocaulus hengsti and Epistylis rotti and another small ciliate Trachelophyllum apiculatum. There was little detritus in this layer, and so, the abundance of the ciliates was low. On the other hand, there is little predation in deeper layers of stygorhithral sand and gravel. Small, long and thin ciliates seem so be specially adapted to life in deeper regions of the stygornithral Stygorhithral ciliates are related to custygal species with respect to several characteristics of their morphology and general biology.

Laboratory studies of predatory behaviour in two subspecies of the Carabid cave beetle: Neaphaenops tellkampfi., 1990, Griffith David M.
Comparative studies on the foraging behaviour of Neaphaenops tellkampfi tellkampfi and N. t. meridionalis demonstrated adaptation to different environments. The southern subspecies N. t. meridionalis, which is found in wet muddy caves where cave cricket eggs are unlikely prey, did not locate buried cricket eggs and dug fewer and less accurate holes in the lab than the nominate subspecies. N. t. tellkampfi, which reaches high densities in sandy deep cave environments where cricket eggs are the only viable prey, gained significantly greater weight than meridionalis when presented buried cricket eggs as prey. There was no difference with respect to weight change between the subspecies in the presence of Ptomaphagus larvae. N. t. meridionalis gained weight at a significantly greater rate than the nominate subspecies with enchytraeid worms as prey. Enchytraeid worms represent the natural prey most likely to be encountered by N. t. meridionalis. 25% of beetle holes were dug deep enough to potentially located buried cricket eggs. Since Hubbell and Nortons' morphological data on the relationship between cricket ovipositor length and beetle predation have some problems with sample sizes and minor assumptions I conclude that there are no unequivocal data that support the possibility of coevolution between Neaphaenops and Hadenoecus.

Bats of Kartchner Caverns State Park, Arizona, 1999, Buecher, D. C. , Sidner, R. M.
Kartchner Caverns, in southeastern Arizona, is a summer maternity roost for approximately 1000-2000 cave myotis (Myotis velifer). The pregnant females first arrive at the cave in late April, give birth in June, and have left by mid- September. These bats are an important element in the cave ecosystem because their excrement introduces nutrients, which support a complex invertebrate cave fauna. Bat population densities and emergence behavior was monitored between 1988-1991. Other bat species seen using the entrance areas of the cave include Corynorhinus townsendi and Choeronycteris mexicana. Because bats are easily disturbed by human intrusion into the roost, the baseline study was accomplished using low-disturbance techniques in an effort to provide the greatest amount of data with the least disturbance to the bat colony. These techniques included limited visual observations in the roost and netting bats only on the surface at a nearby water tank. During the baseline study, an episode of predation by a carnivore (Bassariscus astutus) caused the bats to abandon the site for a short time. Carbon-14 dating of guano from the Throne and Rotunda Rooms suggests that Myotis velifer used the Back Section of Kartchner Caverns 50-45 years Ka.

Colonization by aerobic bacteria in karst: Laboratory and in situ experiments, 2004, Personne J. C. , Poty F. , Mahler B. J. , Drogue C. ,
Experiments were carried out to investigate the potential for bacterial colonization of different substrates in karst aquifers and the nature of the colonizing bacteria. Laboratory batch experiments were performed using limestone and PVC as substrates, a natural bacterial isolate and a known laboratory strain (Escherichia coli [E. coli]) as inocula, and karst ground water and a synthetic formula as growth media. In parallel, fragments of limestone and granite were submerged in boreholes penetrating two karst aquifers for more than one year; the boreholes are periodically contaminated by enteric bacteria from waste water. Once a month, rock samples were removed and the colonizing bacteria quantified and identified. The batch experiments demonstrated that the natural isolate and E. coli both readily colonized limestone surfaces using karst ground water as the growth medium. In contrast, bacterial colonization of both the limestone and granite substrates, when submerged in the karst, was less intense. More than 300 bacterial strains were isolated over the period sampled, but no temporal pattern in colonization was seen as far as strain, and colonization by E. coli was notably absent, although strains of Salmonella and Citrobacter were each observed once. Samples suspended in boreholes penetrating, highly fractured zones were less densely colonized than those in the borehole penetrating a less fractured zone. The results suggest that contamination of karst aquifers by enteric bacteria is unlikely to be persistent. We hypothesize that this may be a result of the high flow velocities found in karst conduits, and of predation of colonizing bacteria by autochthonous zooplankton

Intra-specific predation and survivorship of Gammarus pulex (Crustacea: Amphipoda) within aquatic karstic habitats, 2006, Little, Sally, Tom Haslehurst And Paul J. Wood.
Population characteristics (abundance of individuals, body size and body mass index) of the stygophilic freshwater shrimp, Gammarus pulex (Crustacea: Amphipoda), and resource availability (particulate organic matter) within karstic subterranean, spring and riverine habitats in the English Peak District (Derbyshire) were examined. Field experiments were subsequently undertaken to characterize the intra-specific predatory behaviour (cannibalism) of the different populations. The results indicate that the natural abundance of G. pulex was lower in subterranean habitats compared to epigean habitats, although there was a similar body size range of individuals present within each habitat. Subterranean and spring populations had a lower body mass index compared to riverine populations. Experiments assessing intraspecific predation of G. pulex indicated that survivorship was significantly lower at subterranean sites compared to epigean spring and riverine sites. The results are discussed with reference to intra-specific predation within Gammarus spp. populations and resource limitation within aquatic subterranean habitats.

Phototactic behaviour of subterranean Copionodontinae Pinna, 1992 catf ishes (Siluriformes, Trichomycteridae) from Chapada Diamantina, central Bahia, northeastern Brazil, 2013, Rantin B. , Bichuette M. E.

The phototactic behaviour of three Copionodontinae (Trichomycteridae) catf ish species (two troglobites and one epigean) from Chapada Diamantina was studied in order to detect modif ications related to isolation in the subterranean environment. Differences in response under different luminosities were detected and, unlike other cavef ish, Copionodontinae cave species have shown to be more photophobic than the epigean syntopic to them. The troglobitic Glaphyropoma spinosum is the most photophobic, presenting this behaviour under all light intensities, and more homogeneous regarding morphological characters. It suggests that this population is probably isolated for a longer time in the subterranean environment compared to Copionodon sp. n., the other cave species, which is only photophobic under low light intensities. The indifference to light exhibited by the epigean species C. pecten could be an answer to a recent predation pressure, an ecological aspect, and perhaps this character-state is under f ixation in this population. There are also evidences that the skin has a relevant role in the perception of light for the Copionodontinae species.


Rana iberica (Boulenger, 1879) goes underground: subterranean habitat usage and new insights on natural history, 2013, Gonalo M. Rosa, Andreia Penado

Reports of amphibians exploiting subterranean habitats are common, with salamanders being the most frequent and studied inhabitants. Anurans can occasionally be observed in caves and other subterranean habitats, but in contrast to salamanders, breeding had never been reported in a cave or similar subterranean habitat in Western Europe. Based on observations during visits to a drainage gallery in Serra da Estrela, Portugal, from May 2010 to December 2012, here we document: (i) first report of Rana iberica reproduction in cave-like habitat, representing the fourth report of an anuran for the Palearctic ecozone; (ii) oophagic habits of the tadpoles of Ranaiberica; and (iii) Salamandra salamandra predation on Rana iberica larvae. These observations, particularly of Rana iberica, highlight our lack of knowledge of subterranean ecosystems in the Iberian Peninsula.


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