Kingsnakes are colubrid snakes, members of the genus Lampropeltis, which include milk snakes and four other species. Among these, there are approximately 45 recognized subspecies, Lampropeltis means shiny shield, a name given to them in reference to their smooth dorsal scales. Kingsnakes use constriction to kill their prey and tend to be opportunistic when it comes to their diet, they eat other snakes. Kingsnakes will eat lizards, rodents and eggs, the common kingsnake is known to be immune to the venom of other snakes and do eat rattlesnakes, but it is not necessarily immune to the venom of snakes from different localities. The king in the name references its eating of other snakes, the majority of kingsnakes have quite vibrant patterns on their skins. One of the rhymes to help people distinguish between the coral snake and its nonvenomous look-alikes in the United States is Red on black, friend of Jack, Red on yellow. Coral snakes found in parts of the world can have distinctly different patterns, have red bands touching black bands, have only pink and blue banding.
Taxonomic reclassification is a process, and different sources often disagree. In the case of Lampropeltis catalinensis, for example, only a single specimen exists, in addition, hybridization between species with overlapping geographic ranges is not uncommon, confusing taxonomists further. The Kingsnake is often preyed upon by large Vertebra such as falcons, bald eagles, tarantula spiders sometimes prey on the snake
Millets are a group of highly variable small-seeded grasses, widely grown around the world as cereal crops or grains for fodder and human food. Millets are important crops in the tropics of Asia and Africa. The crop is favored due to its productivity and short growing season under dry, millets are indigenous to many parts of the world. The most widely grown millet is pearl millet, which is an important crop in India, Finger millet, proso millet, and foxtail millet are important crop species. Millets have been important food staples in human history, particularly in Asia and they have been in cultivation in East Asia for the last 10,000 years. Consumption of the minor millets has been practiced since the beginning of the ancient civilizations of the world, the millets are small-grained, warm-weather cereals belonging to grass family. They are highly tolerant of extreme conditions such as drought and are nutritious compared to the major cereals such as rice. They contain low phytic acid and are rich in fiber, calcium.
Moreover, these millets release sugar slowly in the blood and diminish the glucose absorption, major millets are the most widely cultivated species. Eragrostideae tribe, Eleusine coracana, Finger millet - the fourth-most cultivated millet, paniceae tribe, Panicum miliaceum, Proso millet - the third-most cultivated millet. Pennisetum glaucum, Pearl millet - the most cultivated millet, setaria italica, Foxtail millet - the second-most cultivated millet. Jobs tears - of minor importance as a crop, eragrostideae tribe, Eragrostis tef, Teff - often not considered to be a millet. White fonio, Black fonio, Polish millet - of minor importance as a crop, Japanese barnyard millet, Indian barnyard millet, Burgu millet, Common barnyard grass. Collectively, the members of this genus are called barnyard grasses or barnyard millets, other common names to identify these seeds include Jhangora, Samo seeds or Morio / Mario / Moraiaya seeds. Panicum sumatrense, Little millet Paspalum scrobiculatum, Kodo millet Urochloa ramosa, guinea millet Foxtail Millet is known to have been the first domesticated millet.
Chinese legends attribute the domestication of millet to Shennong, the legendary Emperor of China, millets formed important parts of the prehistoric diet in Indian, Chinese Neolithic and Korean Mumun societies. Broomcorn and foxtail millet were important crops beginning in the Early Neolithic of China, for example, some of the earliest evidence of millet cultivation in China was found at Cishan. Evidence at Cishan for foxtail millet dates back to around 6500 BC, a 4, 000-year-old well-preserved bowl containing well-preserved noodles made from foxtail millet and broomcorn millet was found at the Lajia archaeological site in China
The native range of V. farnesiana is uncertain. While the point of origin is Mexico and Central America, the species has a pantropical distribution incorporating northern Australia and it remains unclear whether the extra-American distribution is primarily natural or anthropogenic. It is deciduous over part of its range, but evergreen in most locales, the species grows to a height of up to 8 m and has a lifespan of about 25–50 years. The plant has recently spread to many new locations as a result of human activity and it is considered a serious weed in Fiji. It thrives in dry, saline, or sodic soils and it is a serious pest plant in parts of Australia, including north-west New South Wales, where it now infests thousands of acres of grazing country. Under stewardship of these Farnese Gardens this acacia was imported to Italy, the plant itself was brought to the Farnese Gardens from the Caribbean and Central America, where it originates. The bark is used for its tannin content, highly tannic barks are common in general to acacias.
Extracts of many are used in medicine for this reason, the leaves are used as a tamarind flavoring for chutneys and the pods are roasted to be used in sweet and sour dishes. The flowers are processed through distillation to produce a perfume called Cassie and it is widely used in the perfume industry in Europe. Flowers of the plant provide the essence from which the biologically important sesquiterpenoid farnesol is named. Scented ointments from Cassie are made in India, the foliage is a significant source of forage in much of its range, with a protein content around 18%. The concentration of tannin in the pods is about 23%. The seeds of V. farnesiana are not toxic to humans and are a food source for people throughout the plants range. The ripe seeds are put through a press to make oil for cooking, nonetheless, an anecdotal report has been made that in Brazil some people use the seeds of V. farnesiana to eliminate rabid dogs. This is attributed to a toxic alkaloid. The tree makes good forage for bees, a black pigment is extracted from the bark and fruit.
The bark and the flowers are the parts of the tree most used in traditional medicine, V. farnesiana has been used in Colombia to treat malaria, and the extract from the tree bark and leaves has shown some efficacy against the malarial pathogen Plasmodium falciparum in animal models. Indigenous Australians have used the roots and bark of the tree to treat diarrhea, the trees leaves can be rubbed on the skin to treat skin diseases
Imperial County, California
Imperial County is a county in the U. S. state of California. As of the 2010 census, the population was 174,528, the county seat is El Centro. Established in 1907, it was the last county to be formed in California, Imperial County comprises the El Centro, CA Metropolitan Statistical Area. It is part of the Southern California border region, the smallest but most economically diverse region in the state and it is located in the Imperial Valley, in the far southeast of California, bordering both Arizona and Mexico. The Imperial Valley is a pot of Anglo-American and Chicano/Latino cultures. On the American side, the majority of residents are of Mexican American heritage, the entire valley is a multi-ethnic mixture of whites, Asian Americans, some African Americans and Native Americans. In 2014, Imperial County had the second highest percentage of unemployed people of any county in the United States, Spanish explorer Melchor Díaz was one of the first Europeans to visit the area around Imperial Valley in 1540.
The explorer Juan Bautista de Anza explored the area in 1776, years later, after the Mexican-American War, the northern half of the valley was annexed by the U. S. while the southern half remained under Mexican rule. Small scale settlement in natural aquifer areas occurred in the early 19th century, in 1905, torrential rainfall in the American Southwest caused the Colorado River to flood, including canals that had been built to irrigate the Imperial Valley. Since the valley is partially below sea level, the waters never fully receded, but collected in the Salton Sink in what is now called the Salton Sea, Imperial County was formed in 1907 from the eastern portion of San Diego County. Much of the Imperial Land Companys land existed in Mexico, the objective of the company was commercial crop farming development. By 1910, the company had managed to settle and develop thousands of farms on both sides of the border. The Mexican Revolution soon after severely disrupted the companys plans, nearly 10,000 farmers and their families in Mexico were ethnically cleansed by the rival Mexican armies.
By the 1950 census, over 50,000 residents lived in Imperial County alone, most of the population was year-round but would increase every winter by migrant laborers from Mexico. Until the 1960s, the farms in Imperial County provided substantial economic returns to the company, currently, El Centro has one of the U. S highest unemployment rates and ranks one of the states poorest counties or have a lower than state and national average annual household income. Fort Yuma is located on the banks of the Colorado River in Winterhaven, first established after the end of the Mexican-American War in 1848, it was originally located in the bottoms near the Colorado River, less than 1-mile below the mouth of the Gila River. It was to defend the newly settled community of Yuma, Arizona on the side of the Colorado River. In March 1851 the post was moved to an elevation on the Colorados west bank, opposite the present city of Yuma, Arizona
Mexico, officially the United Mexican States, is a federal republic in the southern half of North America. It is bordered to the north by the United States, to the south and west by the Pacific Ocean, to the southeast by Guatemala and the Caribbean Sea, and to the east by the Gulf of Mexico. Covering almost two million square kilometers, Mexico is the sixth largest country in the Americas by total area, Mexico is a federation comprising 31 states and a federal district that is its capital and most populous city. Other metropolises include Guadalajara, Puebla, Tijuana, pre-Columbian Mexico was home to many advanced Mesoamerican civilizations, such as the Olmec, Teotihuacan, Zapotec and Aztec before first contact with Europeans. In 1521, the Spanish Empire conquered and colonized the territory from its base in Mexico-Tenochtitlan, Three centuries later, this territory became Mexico following recognition in 1821 after the colonys Mexican War of Independence. The tumultuous post-independence period was characterized by instability and many political changes.
The Mexican–American War led to the cession of the extensive northern borderlands, one-third of its territory. The Pastry War, the Franco-Mexican War, a civil war, the dictatorship was overthrown in the Mexican Revolution of 1910, which culminated with the promulgation of the 1917 Constitution and the emergence of the countrys current political system. Mexico has the fifteenth largest nominal GDP and the eleventh largest by purchasing power parity, the Mexican economy is strongly linked to those of its North American Free Trade Agreement partners, especially the United States. Mexico was the first Latin American member of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development and it is classified as an upper-middle income country by the World Bank and a newly industrialized country by several analysts. By 2050, Mexico could become the fifth or seventh largest economy. The country is considered both a power and middle power, and is often identified as an emerging global power. Due to its culture and history, Mexico ranks first in the Americas.
Mexico is a country, ranking fourth in the world by biodiversity. In 2015 it was the 9th most visited country in the world, Mexico is a member of the United Nations, the World Trade Organization, the G8+5, the G20, the Uniting for Consensus and the Pacific Alliance. Mēxihco is the Nahuatl term for the heartland of the Aztec Empire, the Valley of Mexico, and its people, the Mexica and this became the future State of Mexico as a division of New Spain prior to independence. It is generally considered to be a toponym for the valley became the primary ethnonym for the Aztec Triple Alliance as a result. After New Spain won independence from Spain, representatives decided to name the new country after its capital and this was founded in 1524 on top of the ancient Mexica capital of Mexico-Tenochtitlan
The term fish kill, known as fish die-off, refers to a localized die-off of fish populations which may be associated with more generalized mortality of aquatic life. The most common cause is reduced oxygen in the water, which in turn may be due to such as drought, algae bloom, overpopulation. Infectious diseases and parasites can lead to fish kill, toxicity is a real but far less common cause of fish kill. Fish kills are often the first visible signs of stress and are usually investigated as a matter of urgency by environmental agencies to determine the cause of the kill. Pollution events may affect fish species and fish age classes in different ways, if it is a cold-related fish kill, juvenile fish or species that are not cold-tolerant may be selectively affected. If toxicity is the cause, species are more generally affected, a reduction in dissolved oxygen may affect larger specimens more than smaller fish as these may be able to access oxygen richer water at the surface, at least for a short time.
Fish kills may result from a variety of causes, of known causes, fish kills are most frequently caused by pollution from agricultural runoff or biotoxins. Ecological hypoxia is one of the most common causes of fish kills. The hypoxic event may be brought on by such as algae blooms, high temperatures. Because of the difficulty and lack of standard protocol to investigate fish kills, oxygen enters the water through diffusion. The amount of oxygen that can be dissolved in water depends on the atmospheric pressure, the water temperature and whether the water is salty. For example, at 20 °C and one atmosphere of pressure, the amount of oxygen that can be dissolved in the water decreases by about 1 mg/l for each 10 °C increase in water temperature above 20 °C. Many cold water fish live in clean cold waters become stressed when oxygen concentrations fall below 8 mg/l while warm water fish generally need at least 5 ppm of dissolved oxygen. Fish can endure periods of reduced oxygen. Depleted oxygen levels are the most common cause of fish kills, associated with these photosynthetic rhythms there is a matching pH rhythm as bicarbonate ion is metabolised by plant cells.
This can lead to pH stress even when oxygen levels are high and these are naturally occurring in many bodies of water, and fish that are stressed for other reasons, such as spawning or suboptimal water quality, are more susceptible. For example, since 2004 fish kills have been observed in the Shenandoah River basin in the spring, so far, investigators suspect certain bacteria, along with environmental and contaminant factors that may cause immune suppression. In fish farming, where populations are optimized for the resources, parasites or disease can spread quickly
The American avocet is a large wader in the avocet and stilt family, Recurvirostridae. The American avocet forages in water or on mud flats, often sweeping its bill from side to side in water as it seeks its crustacean. The American avocet measures 40–51 cm in length, has a wingsand of 68–76 cm and weighs 275–420 g It has long, gray legs, giving it its colloquial name, the plumage is black and white on the back with white on the underbelly. The neck and head are cinnamon colored in the summer and gray in the winter, the long, thin bill is upturned at the end. The breeding habitat is marshes, prairie ponds, and shallow lakes in the mid-west as far north as southern Alberta and Manitoba and this species is migratory, and mostly winters on the southern Atlantic and Pacific coasts of Mexico and the United States. American avocets form breeding colonies numbering dozens of pairs, when breeding is over the birds gather in large flocks, sometimes including hundreds of birds. Nesting occurs near water, usually on small islands or boggy shorelines where access by predators is difficult, the female lays four eggs in a saucer-shaped nest, and both sexes take turns incubating them.
Upon hatching, the chicks feed themselves, they are never fed by their parents, the American avocet is protected under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918. ISBN 0-618-43294-9 American avocet - Recurvirostra americana - USGS Patuxent Bird Identification InfoCenter American avocet species account – Cornell Lab of Ornithology American avocet media, American avocet photo gallery at VIREO Interactive range map of Recurvirostra americana at IUCN Red List maps
The black-necked stilt is a locally abundant shorebird of American wetlands and coastlines. It is often treated as a subspecies of the common or black-winged stilt, the AOU has always considered it a species in its own right, and the scientific name Himantopus mexicanus is often seen. Matters are more complicated though, sometimes all five distinct lineages of the Common Stilt are treated as different species, thus, in their scheme the black-necked stilt is properly named Himantopus mexicanus mexicanus. Adults have long legs and a long thin black bill. They are white below and have wings and backs. The tail is white with some grey banding, a continuous area of black extends from the back along the hindneck to the head. There, it forms a cap covering the head from the top to just below eye-level, with the exception of the areas surrounding the bill. Males have a gloss to the back and wings, particularly in the breeding season. This is less pronounced or absent in females, which have a tinge to these areas instead.
Downy young are light brown with lengthwise rows of black speckles on the upperparts – essentially where adults are black – and dull white elsewhere. Where their ranges meet in central Brazil, the black-necked and white-backed stilts intergrade, such individuals often have some white or grey on top of the head and a white or grey collar separating the black of the hindneck from that of the upper back. The black-necked stilt is distinguished from non-breeding vagrants of the Old World black-winged stilt by the white spot above the eye, vagrants of the northern American form in turn is hard to tell apart from the resident Hawaiian stilt, in which only the eye-spot is markedly smaller. But though many stilt populations are long-distance migrants and during their movements can be hundreds of miles offshore. It is found in seasonally flooded wetlands, at the Salton Sea, the black-necked stilt is resident year-round. This bird is abundant in the San Joaquin Valley, where it commonly winters. It is common to abundant in appropriate habitat in southern California from April to September.
It breeds along lake shores in northeastern California and southeastern Oregon as well as along the Colorado River. In North America outside California, the black-necked stilt rarely breeds inland, in Arizona, black-necked stilts may be seen along artificially created lakes and drainage basins in the Phoenix metropolitan area, in remnant riparian habitat
The ground squirrels are members of the squirrel family of rodents which generally live on or in the ground, rather than trees. Together, they make up the tribe of squirrels and the large and mainly ground squirrel subfamily Xerinae. Well-known members of this largely Holarctic group are the marmots, including the American groundhog, the chipmunks, the susliks, and the prairie dogs. They are highly variable in size and habitus, but most are able to rise up on their hind legs. They tend to be far more gregarious than other squirrels, most Marmotini are rather short-tailed and large squirrels, and the alpine marmot is the largest living member of the Sciuridae, at 53–73 cm in length and weighing 5–8 kg. The chipmunks of the genus Tamias frequently spend time in trees, closer to typical squirrels in other aspects, they are occasionally considered a tribe of their own. The ground squirrel is especially renowned for its tendency to rise up on its hind legs and it does this whenever it senses nearby danger, or when it must see over tall grasses.
The squirrel curls its paws flat against its chest and sends a call to warn other family members about the presence of predators. Palaeosciurus from Europe is the oldest known ground squirrel species, the oldest fossils are from the Early Oligocene, more than 30 million years ago, but the genus probably persisted at least until the mid-Miocene, some 15 mya. It is not clear where the Marmotini originated, the subtribes probably diverged in the early to mid-Oligocene, as primitive marmots and chipmunks are known from the Late Oligocene of North America. A ground squirrel lives in areas like pastures, golf courses, cemeteries. Ground squirrels are omnivorous, and will not only eat a diet rich in fungi, nuts and seeds, but insects, eggs. Squirrel Tree squirrel Richardsons ground squirrel Helgen, Kristofer M. Cole, F. Russell, generic Revision in the Holarctic Ground Squirrel Genus Spermophilus. Archived from the original on 2011-10-22, nuclear DNA phylogeny of the squirrels and the evolution of arboreality from c-myc and RAG1.
Doi,10. 1016/S1055-790300204-5 PDF fulltext Thorington, R. W. & Hoffmann, in, Mammal Species of the World—A Taxonomic and Geographic Reference, 754–818
Pesticides are substances that are meant to control pests or weeds. The most common of these are herbicides which account for approximately 80% of all pesticide use, most pesticides are intended to serve as plant protection products, which in general, protect plants from weeds, fungi, or insects. In general, a pesticide is a chemical or biological agent that deters, kills, or otherwise discourages pests. Target pests can include insects, plant pathogens, mollusks, mammals, nematodes, although pesticides have benefits, some have drawbacks, such as potential toxicity to humans and other species. According to the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants,9 of the 12 most dangerous, the term includes substances intended for use as a plant growth regulator, desiccant, or agent for thinning fruit or preventing the premature fall of fruit. Also used as substances applied to either before or after harvest to protect the commodity from deterioration during storage. Pesticides can be classified by target organism, chemical structure, biopesticides include microbial pesticides and biochemical pesticides.
Plant-derived pesticides, or botanicals, have been developing quickly and these include the pyrethroids, nicotinoids, and a fourth group that includes strychnine and scilliroside. Many pesticides can be grouped into chemical families, prominent insecticide families include organochlorines and carbamates. Organochlorine hydrocarbons could be separated into dichlorodiphenylethanes, cyclodiene compounds, and they operate by disrupting the sodium/potassium balance of the nerve fiber, forcing the nerve to transmit continuously. Their toxicities vary greatly, but they have phased out because of their persistence. Organophosphate and carbamates largely replaced organochlorines, both operate through inhibiting the enzyme acetylcholinesterase, allowing acetylcholine to transfer nerve impulses indefinitely and causing a variety of symptoms such as weakness or paralysis. Organophosphates are quite toxic to vertebrates, and have in some cases replaced by less toxic carbamates. Thiocarbamate and dithiocarbamates are subclasses of carbamates, prominent families of herbicides include phenoxy and benzoic acid herbicides, triazines and Chloroacetanilides.
Phenoxy compounds tend to selectively kill broad-leaf weeds rather than grasses, the phenoxy and benzoic acid herbicides function similar to plant growth hormones, and grow cells without normal cell division, crushing the plants nutrient transport system. Many commonly used pesticides are not included in these families, including glyphosate, Pesticides can be classified based upon their biological mechanism function or application method. Most pesticides work by poisoning pests, a systemic pesticide moves inside a plant following absorption by the plant. With insecticides and most fungicides, this movement is usually upward and outward, increased efficiency may be a result
Tilapia is the common name for nearly a hundred species of cichlid fish from the tilapiine cichlid tribe. Tilapia are mainly freshwater fish inhabiting shallow streams, ponds and lakes, they have been of major importance in artisan fishing in Africa and the Middle East, and they are of increasing importance in aquaculture and aquaponics. Tilapia is the fourth most consumed fish in the United States dating back to 2002, the popularity of tilapia came about due to its cheap price, easy preparation, and its mild taste. Tilapia was a symbol of rebirth in Egyptian art, and was in addition associated with Hathor and it was said to accompany and protect the sun god on his daily journey across the sky. Tilapia were one of the three types of fish caught in Biblical times from the Sea of Galilee. At that time they were called Amnoon, in Arabic the fish is called Musht, which means a comb, as resembled by its backfin or commonly now as St. Peters fish. The name St. Peters fish comes from the story in the Gospel of Matthew about the apostle Peter catching a fish that carried a coin in its mouth and these species have been the target of small-scale artisanal fisheries in the area for thousands of years.
The common name tilapia is based on the name of the cichlid genus Tilapia, which is itself a latinisation of thiape, scottish zoologist Andrew Smith named the genus in 1840. Tilapia typically have laterally compressed, deep bodies, like other cichlids, their lower pharyngeal bones are fused into a single tooth-bearing structure. This means they are efficient feeders that can capture and process a variety of food items. Their mouths are protrusible, usually bordered with wide and often swollen lips, typically tilapia have a long dorsal fin, and a lateral line which often breaks towards the end of the dorsal fin, and starts again two or three rows of scales below. Some Nile tilapia can grow as long as two feet, other than their temperature sensitivity, tilapia exist in or can adapt to a very wide range of conditions. One extreme example is the Salton Sea, where tilapia introduced when the water was brackish now live in saltwater so salty that it kills marine fish, Tilapia are known to be a mouth breeding species.
Mouth breeding means they carry the eggs and young fish in their mouths for several days after the yolk sac is absorbed. Tilapia as a name has been applied to various cichlids from three distinct genera, Oreochromis and Tilapia. The members of the two genera used to belong to the genus Tilapia but have since been split off into their own genera. However, particular species within are still commonly called tilapia regardless of the change in their actual taxonomic nomenclature, the species remaining in Tilapia in particular still seem to be a paraphyletic assemblage. Tilapia has been used as controls for certain aquatic plant problems
The muskrat is found in wetlands over a wide range of climates and habitats. It has important effects on the ecology of wetlands, and is a resource of food, the muskrat is the largest species in the subfamily Arvicolinae, which includes 142 other species of rodents, mostly voles and lemmings. Muskrats are referred to as rats in a sense because they are medium-sized rodents with an adaptable lifestyle. They are not, members of the genus Rattus, the muskrats name probably comes from a word of Algonquian origin, muscascus, or from the Abenaki native word mòskwas, as seen in the archaic English name for the animal, musquash. Similarly, its specific name zibethicus means ‘musky’, being the adjective of zibethus ‘civet musk, the genus name comes from the Huron word for the animal and entered New Latin as Ondatra via French. An adult muskrat is about 40–70 cm long, half of that is the tail, Muskrats are much smaller than beavers, with which they often share their habitat. Muskrats are covered with short, thick fur which is medium to dark brown or black in color, with the belly a bit lighter, as the age increases, the fur has two layers, which helps protect them from the cold water.
They have long tails covered with rather than hair, and to aid them in swimming, are slightly flattened vertically. When they walk on land, their tails drag on the ground, Muskrats spend much of their time in the water and are well suited for their semiaquatic life. They can swim under water for 12 to 17 minutes and their bodies, like those of seals and whales, are less sensitive to the buildup of carbon dioxide than those of most other mammals. They can close off their ears to keep the water out and their hind feet are semiwebbed, although in swimming, their tails are their main means of propulsion. Muskrats are found over most of Canada and the United States and they were introduced to Europe in the beginning of the 20th century and have become an invasive species in northwestern Europe. They mostly inhabit wetlands, areas in or near saline and freshwater wetlands, rivers and they are not found in Florida, where the round-tailed muskrat, or Florida water rat, fills their niche. Their populations naturally cycle, in areas where they become abundant and they are thought to play a major role in determining the vegetation of prairie wetlands in particular.
They selectively remove preferred plant species, thereby changing the abundance of plant species in many kinds of wetlands, species commonly eaten include cattail and yellow water lily. Alligators are thought to be an important natural predator, and the absence of muskrats from Florida may in part be the result of alligator predation and they are able to live alongside streams which contain the sulfurous water that drains away from coal mines. Fish and frogs perish in such streams, yet muskrats may thrive, Muskrats benefit from human persecution of some of their predators. The muskrat is classed as a new organism under New Zealands Hazardous Substances and New Organisms Act 1996