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See detailEtat de la biodiversité: les mammifères
Schockert, Vincianne ULg; Libois, Roland ULg

Learning material (2010)

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See detailMartin pêcheur d'Europe, Alcedo atthis
Dehem, Christophe; Hallet, Catherine; Libois, Roland ULg

in Jacob, Jean Paul; Dehem, Christophe; Burnel, André (Eds.) et al Atlas des oiseaux nicheurs de Wallonie 2001/ 2007 (2010)

The kingfisher is widespread in Wallonia but is missing locally in middle Belgium and in higher Ardenne. The field prospection for the atlas took place in a favorable climatic context; the current ... [more ▼]

The kingfisher is widespread in Wallonia but is missing locally in middle Belgium and in higher Ardenne. The field prospection for the atlas took place in a favorable climatic context; the current population, estimated at 450 650 pairs, reflects probably the saturation of the habitat. The highest densities are found along large rivers, with important fishing ressources and numerous nesting sites (Lesse, Ourthe, Semois, Viroin). The limiting fator seems to be the lack of nesting sites. [less ▲]

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See detailEtude de la statégie alimentaire du balbuzard pêcheur
Rosoux, René; Libois, Roland ULg; Schweyer, Jean Baptiste

Learning material (2010)

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See detailDe la cerise au sanglier: contribution à l'étude du régime alimentaire de la fouine, Martes foina (Erxleben 1777) en Belgique
Lambinet, Clotilde ULg; Libois, Roland ULg

in Naturalistes Belges (Les) (2010), 91

The study of the diet of an animal contributes to a better knowledge of its ecology. The present study consists of the analysis of five faeces samples collected in various environments as well as 26 ... [more ▼]

The study of the diet of an animal contributes to a better knowledge of its ecology. The present study consists of the analysis of five faeces samples collected in various environments as well as 26 stomach contents, to underline the various food resources consumed by the stone marten. The results obtained overlap rather well the data of the literature. Therefore, it allows to strenghten the researches carried out in the bordering countries. The conclusions of the present study are the following ones: the stone marten is an animal polyphagous and non-specialized. Its food spectrum covers as well the animal kingdom as the vegetable one. Furthermore, samples allowed to point out seasonal variations in the diet. Also, net differences are observed between urban and rural environments. Finally, the variety and the relative occurrence of the various elements gathered show how much the stone marten is an opportunistic animal which adapts itself to the environmental resources [less ▲]

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See detailLes commaunautés d'oiseaux locales dans les mosaïques de végétation du sud du Bénin
Lougbégnon, Olou Toussaint; Codjia, J.T.C; Libois, Roland ULg

in Annales des Sciences Agronomiques du Bénin (2009), 12(1), 85-114

We analysed the spatial frequencies of birds and their distributions across three types of habitats (forests, plantations and various fallows) in the vegetation mosaic in the south of Benin from a total ... [more ▼]

We analysed the spatial frequencies of birds and their distributions across three types of habitats (forests, plantations and various fallows) in the vegetation mosaic in the south of Benin from a total of 45 monitoring stations. 167 species belonging to 40 families were inventoried, the forest having 153 species and fallows and plantations having each 99 species. The similarity index of Jaccard showed 44.0% affinity between forests and flantations, 43.1% between forest and fallows, and 75.5% between forest and fallows. The analysis in main composent and ascending hierachical classification identified three local bird communities, namely for forests, plantations and fallows, ubiquitous in three areas and, respectively, aligned according to their need for intact forest or their propensity to tolerate changes in vegetation/ deforstation. [less ▲]

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See detailQuatre siphonaptères (Siphonaptera) nouveaux pour la faune de Belgique
Libois, Roland ULg

in Bulletin de la Société royale belge d'Entomologie (2009), 145

This short note reports the circumstances where four fleas species, not yet publishid in Belgium, where recorded

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See detailA relict bank vole lineage highlights the biogeographic history of the Pyrenean region in Europe
Deffontaine Deurbroeck, Valérie ULg; Ledevin, Ronan; Fontaine, Michaël ULg et al

in Molecular Ecology (2009)

The Pyrenean region exhibits high levels of endemism suggesting a major contribution to the phylogeography of European species. But, to date, the role of the Pyrenees and surrounding areas as a glacial ... [more ▼]

The Pyrenean region exhibits high levels of endemism suggesting a major contribution to the phylogeography of European species. But, to date, the role of the Pyrenees and surrounding areas as a glacial refugium for temperate species remains poorly explored. In the current study, we investigated the biogeographic role of the Pyrenean region through the analyses of genetic polymorphism and morphology of a typical forest-dwelling small mammal, the bank vole (Myodes glareolus). Analyses of the mitochondrial cytochrome b gene and the third upper molar (M(3)) show a complex phylogeographic structure in the Pyrenean region with at least three distinct lineages: the Western European, Spanish and Basque lineages. The Basque lineage in the northwestern (NW) Pyrenees was identified as a new clearly differentiated and geographically localized bank vole lineage in Europe. The average M(3) shape of Basque bank voles suggests morphological differentiation but also restricted genetic exchanges with other populations. Our genetic and morphological results as well as palaeo-environmental and fossils records support the hypothesis of a new glacial refugium in Europe situated in the NW Pyrenees. The permissive microclimatic conditions that prevailed for a long time in this region may have allowed the survival of temperate species, including humans. Moreover, local differentiation around the Pyrenees is favoured by the opportunity for populations to track the shift of the vegetation belt in altitude rather than in latitude. The finding of the Basque lineage is in agreement with the high level of endemic taxa reported in the NW Pyrenees. [less ▲]

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See detailLes mammifères non volants de la commune de Fernelmont
Libois, Roland ULg; Le Proux de la Rivière, Bettina

in Saintenoy Simon, Jacqueline (Ed.) Le patrimoine d'une commune rurale: Fernelmont (2008, March)

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See detailRôle bioindicateur de l'avifaune dans la dynamique ecologique des mosaïques des milieux naturels terrestres du sud Bénin
Lougbegnon, Olou; Codjia, J T C; Libois, Roland ULg

in Revue des sciences de l'environnement Univ. de Lomé (2008), 4

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See detailDiet and food preference of the waterbuck (Kobus ellipsiprymnus defassa) in the Pendjari National Park, Benin
Kassa, Barthélemy; Libois, Roland ULg; Sinsin, Brice

in African Journal of Ecology (2008), 46(3), 303-310

This study investigated composition and selectivity in diet for waterbuck in the Pendjari National Park in northwestern Benin, through the use of micrographic analysis of faecal samples. Three plant ... [more ▼]

This study investigated composition and selectivity in diet for waterbuck in the Pendjari National Park in northwestern Benin, through the use of micrographic analysis of faecal samples. Three plant species (Panicum anabaptistum, Echinochloa stagnina and Andropogon gayanus) were regularly consumed all year round. Meanwhile, three other species (i.e., Hyparrhenia involucrata, Acroceras amplectens and Oryza barthii) are mostly found in its diet during the beginning of the rainy season. During the dry season, long life grasses (>40%) and tree forage (about 35%) were the most dominant life form in the diet. On the contrary at the beginning of the rainy season, annual species (> 50%) were dominant. In conclusion, the waterbuck has a grazer regime when plant species are abundant and a mixed diet during the dry season. Waterbuck’s food niche breath, defined by Hespenheide [Ecology and Evolution of communities. Harvard Univ. Press, 1975], was lower than 1, implying this antelope does not eat all food categories in a proportional way. Shannon diversity index showed that the diet was more diversified during the rainy season and less diversified at the end of the dry season. Based on [Ecology, 64 (1983), 1297] diet selectivity index, waterbuck exerted a positive selection on the major graminaceous species. [less ▲]

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See detailThe diet of the serotine bat: A Comparison between rural and urban environments
Kervyn, Thierry; Libois, Roland ULg

in Belgian Journal of Zoology (2008), 138(1), 41-49

The diet of four maternity colonies of serotine bats in Southern Belgium was investigated by analysing faecal pellets collected from beneath the roost throughout the activity season. Their diet is ... [more ▼]

The diet of four maternity colonies of serotine bats in Southern Belgium was investigated by analysing faecal pellets collected from beneath the roost throughout the activity season. Their diet is composed of Coleoptera Melolonthidae (Melolontha sp., Amphimallon sp., Rhizotrogus sp., Serica brunnea), Coleoptera Scarabaeidae (Aphodius sp., Geotrupes sp.), Coleoptera Carabidae, Diptera Tipulidae, Diptera Chironomidae, Lepidoptera, Hemiptera Pentatomidae, Hymenoptera Ichneumonoidea Ophionidae, Trichoptera and Arachnida. <br />The diet of an urban colony of serotine bats was broadly the same as the diets of three rural colonies. Though some qualitative and quantitative variations were observed between study sites, the main source of variation in the diet was the seasonal availability of potential prey. <br />The prominence of agriculture-dependant prey (chafers in mid summer and Aphodius beetles in late summer and autumn) was observed at all study sites. Consequently, dietary breadth and diversity is smaller during these periods. [less ▲]

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See detailA Critical Study of Primate Reintroduction Projects in the Mesoamerican Region.
Martin, Sarah ULg; Huynen, Marie-Claude ULg; Libois, Roland ULg

Poster (2008)

Very little is known about primate reintroduction projects in Mesoamerica. The aim of this study was to focus on existing projects concerning primate re-introductions, conservation-introduction ... [more ▼]

Very little is known about primate reintroduction projects in Mesoamerica. The aim of this study was to focus on existing projects concerning primate re-introductions, conservation-introduction, translocation, as well as on reinforcement-supplementation of parallel initiatives. In order to create a database, a survey was sent to a panel of scientists in Mexico, Belize, Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Costa Rica and Panama, and we visited five projects in Costa Rica from March to August 2006. A total of 19 projects were found: Costa Rica hosted the higher number (7) while Salvador and Nicaragua did not host any. Fourteen out of those 19 projects concerned confiscated animals. Six of the 7 Costa Rican projects used confiscated primates; the other ones came from wild populations or were born in captivity. Alouatta palliata and Ateles geoffroyi are the most common species subject to reintroduction effort in the Mesoamerican region. A wide range of factors seem to influence reintroduction success such as: the project’s budget, the release site, the mode of transportation, the caging setting, the support from local communities, the presence of environmental education programs, but also the age of primates, etc. Each project seems to work as a completely separated entity, with its own definition of reintroduction success and its own policy. There’s no communication between the projects, no matter if they are based in the same country or work on the same species. A reintroduction guideline for this region should be established as well as a regional network coordinating the information. [less ▲]

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See detailEvidence of a highly complex phylogeographic structure on a specialist river bird species, the dipper (Cinclus cinclus).
Hourlay, F.; Libois, Roland ULg; D'Amico, F. et al

in Molecular Phylogenetics & Evolution (2008), 49(2), 435-44

This study details the phylogeographic pattern of the white-throated dipper (Cinclus cinclus), a Palearctic, temperate, passerine bird that is exclusively associated with flowing water. Our results reveal ... [more ▼]

This study details the phylogeographic pattern of the white-throated dipper (Cinclus cinclus), a Palearctic, temperate, passerine bird that is exclusively associated with flowing water. Our results reveal a complex phylogeographic structure with at least five distinct lineages for the Western Palearctic region. As for many species of the Western Palearctic fauna and flora, this genetic structure is probably linked to the isolation of populations in different southern refuges during glacial periods. Furthermore, the isolation of populations in Scandinavia and/or Eastern regions, but also in Morocco and probably in Corsica, was accentuated by ecological and biogeographic barriers during Quaternary interglacial periods. During glacial periods, Italy, Sicily and the Balkano-Carpathian region acted as major refuge zones for the dipper. At the end of the last ice age, Western Europe was repopulated by dippers from an Italian refuge, while Eastern Europe was recolonised by Balkano-Carpathian birds. A large contact zone between these two lineages was evidenced and extends from Luxembourg to Hungary. Finally, our results indicate the need to clarify the taxonomic status of the dipper, especially concerning the European subspecies whose validity appears uncertain. [less ▲]

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See detailGeography and host biogeography matter for understanding the phylogeography of a parasite.
Nieberding, Caroline M. ULg; Durette-Desset, Marie-Claude; Vanderpoorten, Alain ULg et al

in Molecular Phylogenetics & Evolution (2008), 47(2), 538-54

The co-evolution between hosts and parasites has long been recognized as a fundamental driver of macro-evolutionary patterns of diversification. The effect of co-differentiation on parasite ... [more ▼]

The co-evolution between hosts and parasites has long been recognized as a fundamental driver of macro-evolutionary patterns of diversification. The effect of co-differentiation on parasite diversification is, however, often confounded by underlying geographic patterns of host distribution. In order to disentangle the confounding effects of allopatric versus host speciation, the mitochondrial cytochrome b (cyt b) gene was sequenced in seventy individuals of the parasitic nematode genus Heligmosomoides sampled in the six Apodemus mice species common in the western Palearctic region. The nuclear internal transcribed spacers (ITS) 1 and 2 were also sequenced in fifteen parasites to confirm the mitochondrial data. All lineages differentiated according to a geographic pattern and independently from the sampled host species. This suggests that host speciation did not involve concurrent parasite speciation. However, the geographic distribution range of some parasite lineages mirrors that of A. sylvaticus lineages in SW Europe, and that of A. flavicollis lineages in the Balkans and in the Middle East. Thus, regional co-differentiation likely occurred between the parasite and the two sister Apodemus hosts in different parts of their distribution range. We suggest that differences in regional abundances of A. sylvaticus and A. flavicollis are responsible for generating this pattern of regional co-differentiation. This study highlights the importance of integrating both geography and biogeographic information from potential hosts to better understand their parasite phylogeography. [less ▲]

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See detailGenetic pattern of the recent recovery of European otters in southern France
Janssens, Xavier; Fontaine, Michael C; Michaux, Johan ULg et al

in Ecography (2008), 31(2), 176-186

We investigated how landscape affects the population genetic structure and the dispersal of the elusive European otter Lutra lutra in a contemporary colonization context, over several generations and at ... [more ▼]

We investigated how landscape affects the population genetic structure and the dispersal of the elusive European otter Lutra lutra in a contemporary colonization context, over several generations and at the level of hydrographic basins. Our study area included 10 basins located in the Cevennes National Park (CNP), at the southern front of the natural otter recovery in France. Each basin comprised 50 to 300 km of permanent rivers that were surveyed for otter presence from 1991 to 2005. Faecal samples collected in 2004 and 2005 in this area were genotyped at 9 microsatellite loci, resulting in the identification of 70 genetically distinct individuals. Bayesian clustering methods were used to infer genetic structure of the populations and to compare recent gene flow to the observed colonization. At the regional level, we identified 2 distinct genetic clusters (NE and SW; FST=0.102) partially separated by ridges, suggesting that the CNP was recolonized by 2 genetically distinct otter populations. At the basin level, the genetic distance between groups of individuals in different basins was positively correlated to the mean slope separating these basins. The probable origins and directions of individual movements (i.e. migration between clusters and basin colonization inside clusters) were inferred from assignment tests. This approach shows that steep and dry lands can stop, impede or divert the dispersal of a mobile carnivore such as the otter. [less ▲]

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See detailLe suivi des populations de muscardin en région wallonne
Schockert, Vincianne ULg; Van der Linden, Samuel; Le Proux de la Rivière, Bettina et al

Learning material (2007)

Le muscardin bénéficie d'une protection intégrale en Région wallonne. A ce titre, le suivi de ses populations constitue une nécessiténactuellement traitée par l'unité de recherches zoogéographiques (U.Lg ... [more ▼]

Le muscardin bénéficie d'une protection intégrale en Région wallonne. A ce titre, le suivi de ses populations constitue une nécessiténactuellement traitée par l'unité de recherches zoogéographiques (U.Lg). Or, l'animal, petit et nocturne, est très difficile à observer. L'équipe chargée de mission a, dans ce cadre, lancé une campagne de recensement via une méthode de collecte d'indices de présence indirecte: la recherche de noisettes rongées [less ▲]

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See detailPlague and the human flea, Tanzania
Laudisoit, Anne ULg; Leirs, H.; Makundi, R. H. et al

in Emerging Infectious Diseases (2007), 13(5), 687-693

Domestic fleas were collected in 12 villages in the western Usambara Mountains in Tanzania. Of these, 7 are considered villages with high plague frequency, where human plague was recorded during at least ... [more ▼]

Domestic fleas were collected in 12 villages in the western Usambara Mountains in Tanzania. Of these, 7 are considered villages with high plague frequency, where human plague was recorded during at least 6 of the 17 plague seasons between 1986 and 2004. In the remaining 5 villages with low plague frequency, plague was either rare or unrecorded. Pulex irritans, known as the human flea, was the predominant flea species (72.4%) in houses. The density of P. irritans, but not of other domestic fleas, was significantly higher in villages with a higher plague frequency or incidence. Moreover, the P. irritans index was strongly positively correlated with plague frequency and with the logarithmically transformed plague incidence. These observations suggest that in Lushoto District human fleas may play a role in plague epidemiology. These findings are of immediate public health relevance because they provide an indicator that can be surveyed to assess the risk for plague. [less ▲]

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See detailBiodiversité comparée des communautés d'oiseaux des plantations et jachères du sud du Bénin
Lougbegnon, Toussaint Olou; Clédjo, Placide G.A.; Codjia, Jean T. et al

in Sciences de l'Environnement (2007), 3

The birds have been used as an indicator of biodiversity in old fallows (after cultivation) and wood plantations (Tectonia grandis, Cocos nucifera and Elaeis guineensis). In the Tectonia woods, 89 species ... [more ▼]

The birds have been used as an indicator of biodiversity in old fallows (after cultivation) and wood plantations (Tectonia grandis, Cocos nucifera and Elaeis guineensis). In the Tectonia woods, 89 species were observed whereas 77 in Cocos and 66 in the palm plantations. The old fallows are richer (68 sp.) than the young ones (33 sp. In these fallows, the bird community is much more diversified in woody vegetation cover (78 sp.) than the shrubby or herbaceous fallows (23 sp.). [less ▲]

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See detailBiodiversité et distribution écologique de l'avifaune des plantations du sud du Bénin
Lougbegnon, Toussaint; Codjia, Jean T. Claude; Libois, Roland ULg

in Actes du 1er colloque de l'UAC des Sciences Cultures et Technologies, Agronomie (2007)

In Benin and particular in the southern part, the natural habitat disappear or deteriorate dangerously. Only subsist the substitution biotopes. Thus, in this part of the country, the plantations will the ... [more ▼]

In Benin and particular in the southern part, the natural habitat disappear or deteriorate dangerously. Only subsist the substitution biotopes. Thus, in this part of the country, the plantations will the last "forest" cover in the next future. Are the plantations could be a good subsitution habitat for forest birds ? In the southern Benin, the wood cover consist in Elaeis guineensis, Tectona grandis and Cocos nucifera (littoral). Birds was surveyed in 12 sites in the three plantation types. Moreover, in these sites, the vegetation structure were described (vegetation cover in different height). The 99 birds species observed were analysed in terms of vegetation cover (ACP). This analysis revealed a good fit between the bird community and their habitat: some species are restricted in one or two plantation type when others ones are more ecological tolerant. [less ▲]

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