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Old 06-30-2009, 07:40 PM   #1
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Default When a Hybrid Takes Hold, the Outcome Can Be Bad

When a Hybrid Takes Hold, the Outcome Can Be Bad
By Henry Fountain
Published: June 29, 2009

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/06/30/sc...=1&ref=science
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The ecological effects of invasive species are often well known, particularly their impact on native plants or animals. But the invaders sometimes make love as well as war: they mate with related local species, producing hybrids. And the effects of such hybridization have not been the subject of much study.
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Old 06-30-2009, 08:16 PM   #2
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We really should be standing up and paying more attention to the ecological effects when hybridization occurs in animals.
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Old 07-01-2009, 01:56 PM   #3
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Default Invasive Salamander Carries on Endangered Genes While Killing off Natives

Invasive Salamander Carries on Endangered Genes While Killing off Natives

Invasive Salamander Carries on Endangered Genes While Killing off Natives | 80beats | Discover Magazine
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The new hybrid “superpredator” grows larger than either of its parent species, and its bigger mouth enables it to suck up a wide variety of amphibian prey, said lead study author Maureen Ryan…. Mostly on the menu are smaller pond species, such as the Pacific chorus frog and the California newt—both of which were “dramatically reduced” in population by the hybrid in the experiments.

In the study, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the researchers found that in its larval stage, the hybrid salamander devoured tadpoles and larvae of many amphibian species, including the larvae of the native tiger salamander, an endangered species. “The implication is they’re ecologically quite different than the native species,” Ms. Ryan said. That could spell trouble for other “third-party” species in the [Salinas] valley, like the California red-legged frog and the Santa Cruz long-toed salamander if the hybrid continues to spread through the area.
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The question of what to do about the hybrid and its hungry, hungry ways poses an ethical quandary for conservationists, says Ryan.
Invasive hybrid tiger salamander genotypes impact native amphibians
Invasive hybrid tiger salamander genotypes impact native amphibians ? PNAS
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Old 07-01-2009, 03:01 PM   #4
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On the topic of Hybrids; when I was at the Mt. Cuba Center in DE, earlier this year, they pointed out some Trilliums that have hybridized with other species. If I recall correctly they have some 19 Trilliums growing there, and it was neat to see so many of them.

Pictured here is either T. flexipes or T. simile which is never red, and yet it has mixed features of other red trilliums growing around it.
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Old 07-01-2009, 10:55 PM   #5
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"The question of what to do about the hybrid and its hungry, hungry ways poses an ethical quandary for conservationists" I don't know any conservationists in an ethical quandry over the hybrid. It's a hybrid and it's not a naturally occurring hybrid. Do what ever it takes to stop its spread before it wreaks more havoc.
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