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 Department: Department of Biology
 Degree Level: Master's
 Collection: UNT Theses and Dissertations
Effects of Macrophyte Functional Diversity on Taxonomic and Functional Diversity and Stability of Tropical Floodplain Fish Assemblages

Effects of Macrophyte Functional Diversity on Taxonomic and Functional Diversity and Stability of Tropical Floodplain Fish Assemblages

Date: August 2015
Creator: Treviño, Jessica Marie
Description: Multiple dimensions of biodiversity within and across producer and consumer guilds in the food web affect an ecosystem’s functionality and stability. Tropical and subtropical aquatic ecosystems, which are extremely diverse, have received much less attention than terrestrial ecosystems in regards to the effects of biodiversity on ecosystem functioning. We conducted a field experiment that tested for effects of macrophyte functional diversity on diversity and stability of associated fish assemblages in floodplain lakes of the Upper Paraná River floodplain, Brazil. Three levels of macrophyte functional diversity were maintained through time in five floodplain lakes and response variables included various components of fish taxonomic and functional diversity and stability. Components of functional diversity of fish assemblages were quantified using a suite of ecomorphological traits that relate to foraging and habitat use. Response variables primarily distinguished macrophyte treatments from the control. Macrophyte treatments had, on average, double the number of species and total abundance than the control treatment, but only limited effects on stability. The high diversity treatment was essentially nested within the low diversity for assemblage structure and had similar or even slightly lower levels of species richness and abundance in most cases. Gymnotiformes and young-of-year were diverse and relatively abundant in ...
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Genetic Analysis of Medicago Truncatula Plants with a Defective Mtire Gene

Genetic Analysis of Medicago Truncatula Plants with a Defective Mtire Gene

Date: August 2015
Creator: Alexis, Naudin
Description: Leguminous plants are able to fix nitrogen by establishing a symbiotic relationship with soil dwelling bacteria, called rhizobia. The model plant Medicago truncatula forms a partnership with Sinorhizobium meliloti whereby the plant gains bioavailable nitrogen and in exchange the bacteria gains carbohydrates. This process occurs within nodules, which are structures produced on the roots of the plants within which nitrogen is fixed. M. truncatula incomplete root elongation (MtIRE) was localized to the infection zone, which is zone II of indeterminate nodules. It was shown to encode a signaling kinase so it was anticipated to play a role in nodulation. Mutants of MtIRE in the R108 background, mutagenized with the Tnt1 retrotransposon, were obtained from reverse screen, and were assessed to determine if a disrupted MtIRE gene was the cause of nitrogen fixation defective nodules. Mutant line NF1320, having a mutant phenotype, showed typical Mendelian segregation of 3:1 when backcrossed to R108. Experimental results show that MtIRE gene is not the cause of the mutant phenotype, but was linked to the causative locus. MtIRE co-segregated with the mutant phenotype 83%. Southern blot and the first version of the M. truncatula genome (version 3.5) reported a single MtIRE gene and this was ...
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Forward Genetic Characterization of Medicago Truncatula Tnt1 Insertion Mutants Defective in Nodule Development and Symbiotic Nitrogen Fixation

Forward Genetic Characterization of Medicago Truncatula Tnt1 Insertion Mutants Defective in Nodule Development and Symbiotic Nitrogen Fixation

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Date: May 2015
Creator: Kadel, Khem L.
Description: Legumes are unique plants because they form special structures “nodules”, via symbiotic relationships with rhizobial bacteria present in the soil. Once rhizobia mature inside nodules, they fix atmospheric nitrogen providing a source of bioavailable nitrogen to the plant. To discover novel genetic components involved in the legume-rhizobia symbiosis by using forward genetic screening, we have isolated Medicago truncatula Tnt1 insertion mutants in the R108 ecotype, which are defective in nodule development and symbiotic nitrogen fixation in response to Sinorhizobium meliloti. Out of three mutants NF11044, NF11217 and NF8324, one of the mutants showed brown nodules and Fix- phenotype that is defective in symbiotic nitrogen fixation. The other two mutants showed white nodules and Fix- phenotype, also indicator of defects in symbiotic nitrogen fixation. To identify the underlying mutation causing the phenotype, we have developed molecular genetic markers by obtaining genomic sequences flanking the Tnt1 insertions by TAIL-PCR and Illumina sequencing. To carry out co-segregation analysis, back-crossed BC1F2 segregating populations were obtained. These are being phenotyped, genotyped and analyzed for co-segregation of the phenotype with the Tnt1 genetic markers. Back-crossing also has the effect of reducing the Tnt1 insertions, which are not linked to the nodulation defective phenotypes. Out of the ...
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Phototoxic Effects of Titanium Dioxide Nanoparticles on Daphnia Magna

Phototoxic Effects of Titanium Dioxide Nanoparticles on Daphnia Magna

Date: December 2013
Creator: Mansfield, Charles M.
Description: Titanium dioxide nanoparticles (TiO2-NP) are one of the most abundantly utilized nanomaterials in the world. Studies have demonstrated the mechanism of acute toxicity in TiO2-NP to be the production of reactive oxygen species (ROS) leading to oxidative stress and mortality in exposed organisms. It has also been demonstrated that the anatase crystalline conformation is capable of catalyzing the cleavage of water molecules to further increase the concentration of ROS in the presence of ultraviolet radiation. This photoenhanced toxicity significantly lowers the toxicity threshold of TiO2-NP to environmentally relevant concentrations (ppb). The goal of this study was to determine whether dietary uptake and accumulation of TiO2-NP in the aquatic filter feeder Daphnia magna resulted in photoenhanced toxicity. D. magna and S. caprincornatum were exposed to aqueous solutions of 20ppm and 200ppm TiO2-NP for 24hrs and then transferred to clean moderately hard water. Samples were taken at various time points, dried, and TiO2 quantified using ICP-MS. Toxicity assays were run on D. magna using three TiO2-NP (20ppm, 200ppm) exposure protocols and two ultraviolet radiation treatments. The first exposure group was exposed to aqueous solutions of TiO2-NP for the duration of the test. The second exposure group was exposed to TiO2-NP for an ...
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Changes in Gene Expression Levels of the Ecf Sigma Factor Bov1605 Under Ph Shift and Oxidative Stress in the Sheep Pathogen Brucella Ovis

Changes in Gene Expression Levels of the Ecf Sigma Factor Bov1605 Under Ph Shift and Oxidative Stress in the Sheep Pathogen Brucella Ovis

Date: December 2012
Creator: Kiehler, Brittany Elaine
Description: Brucella ovis is a sexually transmitted, facultatively anaerobic, intracellular bacterial pathogen of sheep (Ovis aries) and red deer (Cervus elaphus). Brucella spp. infect primarily by penetrating the mucosa and are phagocytized by host macrophages, where survival and replication occurs. At least in some species, it has been shown that entry into stationary phase is necessary for successful infection. Brucella, like other alphaproteobacteria, lack the canonical stationary phase sigma factor ?s. Research on diverse members of this large phylogenetic group indicate the widespread presence of a conserved four-gene set including an alternative ECF sigma factor, an anti-sigma factor, a response regulator (RR), and a histidine kinase (HK). The first description of the system was made in Methylobacterium extorquens where the RR, named PhyR, was found to regulate the sigma factor activity by sequestering the anti-sigma factor in a process termed "sigma factor mimicry." These systems have been associated with various types of extracellular stress responses in a number of environmental bacteria. I hypothesized that homologous genetic sequences (Bov_1604-1607), which are similarly found among all Brucella species, may regulate survival functions during pathogenesis. To further explore the involvement of this system to conditions analogous to those occurring during infection, pure cultures of ...
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Detection of Mercury Among Avian Trophic Levels at Caddo Lake and Lake Lewisville, TX

Detection of Mercury Among Avian Trophic Levels at Caddo Lake and Lake Lewisville, TX

Date: May 2012
Creator: Schulwitz, Sarah Elizabeth
Description: Mercury (Hg) is a globally distributed toxicant that has been shown to have negative effects on birds. in the United States, avian taxa have been shown to possess high Hg concentrations in the northeast, Great Lakes and Everglades ecosystems; however, few studies have measured avian Hg concentrations in other geographic regions. Previous studies have documented high Hg concentrations in multiple organisms in east Texas, but birds were not included in these studies. the main objective of the present study was to quantify Hg concentrations in birds in differing trophic levels at Caddo Lake and Lake Lewisville, TX. Results suggest that Hg concentrations may be high enough to negatively impact some bird taxa, particularly those at high trophic levels, residing at both Caddo Lake and Lake Lewisville.
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Examining the Shade/flood Tolerance Tradeoff Hypothesis in Bottomland Herbs Through Field Study and Experimentation

Examining the Shade/flood Tolerance Tradeoff Hypothesis in Bottomland Herbs Through Field Study and Experimentation

Date: May 2012
Creator: Sloop, Jordan
Description: While there is growing evidence that shade/flood tolerance tradeoffs may be important in distributions of bottomland hardwood trees and indications that they should apply to herbs, no studies have definitively explored this possibility. Four years of field data following historic flooding were supplemented with a greenhouse experiment designed to identify interactions congruent with tradeoffs. Fifteen bottomland species were grown in two levels of water availability and three levels of shade over 10 weeks. Results indicate responses of Fimbristylis vahlii and Ammannia robusta are consistent with tradeoffs. Modification of classical allometric responses to shade by substrate saturation indicates a potential mechanism for the tradeoff in A. robusta. Responses indicating potential for increased susceptibility to physical flooding disturbance are also discussed.
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Integrating Concepts in Modern Molecular Biology into a High School Biology Curriculum

Integrating Concepts in Modern Molecular Biology into a High School Biology Curriculum

Access: Use of this item is restricted to the UNT Community.
Date: August 2003
Creator: Parker, Timothy P.
Description: More so than any other science in the past several decades, Biology has seen an explosion of new information and monumental discoveries that have had a profound impact on much more than the science itself. Much of this has occurred at the molecular level. Many of these modern concepts, ideas, and technologies, as well as their historical context, can be easily understood and appreciated at the high school level. Moreover, it is argued here that the integration of this is critical for making biology relevant as a modern science. A contemporary high school biology curriculum should adequately reflect this newly acquired knowledge and how it has already has already begun to revolutionize medicine, agriculture, and the study of biology itself. This curriculum provides teachers with a detailed framework for integrating molecular biology into a high school biology curriculum. It is not intended to represent the curriculum for an entire academic year, but should be considered a significant component. In addition to examining key concepts and discoveries, it examines modern molecular techniques, their applications, and their relevance to science and beyond. It also provides several recommended labs and helpful protocols.
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Laboratory and field studies of cadmium effects on  Hyalella azteca in effluent dominated systems.

Laboratory and field studies of cadmium effects on Hyalella azteca in effluent dominated systems.

Date: August 2003
Creator: Stanley, Jacob K.
Description: Laboratory single-species toxicity tests are used to assess the effects of contaminants on aquatic biota. Questions remain as to how accurately these controlled toxicity tests predict sitespecific bioavailability and effects of metals. Concurrent 42-day Hyalella azteca exposures were performed with cadmium and final treated municipal effluent in the laboratory and at the University of North Texas Stream Research Facility. Further laboratory testing in reconstituted hard water was also conducted. Endpoints evaluated include survival, growth, reproduction, and Cd body burden. My results demonstrate that laboratory toxicity tests may overestimate toxicity responses to cadmium when compared to effluent dominated stream exposures. Discrepancies between endpoints in the three tests likely resulted from increased food sources and decreased cadmium bioavailability in stream mesocosms
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A Physiological Age-Grading System for Female Hydrellia pakistanae  Deonier (Diptera: Ephydridae)

A Physiological Age-Grading System for Female Hydrellia pakistanae Deonier (Diptera: Ephydridae)

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Date: December 2002
Creator: Lenz, Jennifer Marie
Description: Conflicting opinions about the effectiveness of H. pakistanae as a biological control agent for hydrilla prompt researchers to find a method for assessing the fly's success. Developing a physiological age-grading system for the fly using ovarian morphology to detect changes in reproductive activity is useful for evaluating reproductive status of the fly in field populations. Changes in the appearance of follicular relics in ovaries with oviposition provide a reliable method to estimate fecundity. Characteristics of follicular relics were used to develop a system with eight physiological age classes, three nulliparous and five parous. Changes that occur in the fat body were used to assist in classification of nulliparous females or those with low egg counts.
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Managing Cattail (Typha latifolia) Growth in Wetland Systems

Managing Cattail (Typha latifolia) Growth in Wetland Systems

Date: August 2002
Creator: Sharp, Jessica Little
Description: Nutrient availability, water depth, competition, and soil management effects on cattail (Typha latifolia) growth in wetland systems were examined. Soluble reactive phosphorous (SRP), nitrate-nitrogen (NO3-N), and ammonia-nitrogen (NH3-N) removals were tested at a constructed wetland receiving municipal wastewater effluent. Over all, no significant differences in nutrients occurred between diverse planted and cattail areas. T. latifolia seeds, under the canopy of Eleochoris macrostachya, had low seed germination. Established stands of emergent vegetation can prevent cattail colonization and spread. Germination of T. latifolia at various water depths was tested, and depth impacts on cattail seedling growth and survival were ascertained using various moist soil management techniques in three ponds. Water levels at 0cm and >40cm can adversely impact cattail establishment.
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The Use of Genetic Polymorphisms and Discriminant Analysis in Evaluating Genetic Polymorphisms as a Predictor of Population

The Use of Genetic Polymorphisms and Discriminant Analysis in Evaluating Genetic Polymorphisms as a Predictor of Population

Date: May 2002
Creator: Howell, Bruce F.
Description: Discriminant analysis is a procedure for identifying the relationships between qualitative criterion variables and quantitative predictor variables. Data bases of genetic polymorphisms are currently available that group such polymorphisms by ethnic origin or nationality. Such information could be useful to entities that base financial determinations upon predictions of disease or to medical researchers who wish to target prevention and treatment to population groups. While the use of genetic information to make such determinations is unlawful in states and confidentiality and privacy concerns abound, methods for human “redlining” may occur. Thus, it is necessary to investigate the efficacy of the relationship of certain genetic information to ethnicity to determine if a statistical analysis can provide information concerning such relationship. The use of the statistical technique of discriminant analysis provides a tool for examining such relationship.
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Characterization of  Moraxella bovis Aspartate Transcarbamoylase

Characterization of Moraxella bovis Aspartate Transcarbamoylase

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Date: December 2001
Creator: Hooshdaran, Sahar
Description: Aspartate transcarbamoylase (ATCase) catalyzes the first committed step in the pyrimidine biosynthetic pathway. Bacterial ATCases have been divided into three classes, class A, B, and C, based on their molecular weight, holoenzyme architecture, and enzyme kinetics. Moraxella bovis is a fastidious organism, the etiologic agent of infectious bovine keratoconjunctivitis (IBK). The M. bovis ATCase was purified and characterized for the first time. It is a class A enzyme with a molecular mass of 480 to 520 kDa. It has a pH optimum of 9.5 and is stable at high temperatures. The ATCase holoenzyme is inhibited by CTP > ATP > UTP. The Km for aspartate is 1.8 mM and the Vmax 1.04 µmol per min, where the Km for carbamoylphosphate is 1.05 mM and the Vmax 1.74 µmol per min.
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Characterization of the Aspartate Transcarbamoylase that is Found in the pyrBC’ Complex of Bordetella Pertussis

Characterization of the Aspartate Transcarbamoylase that is Found in the pyrBC’ Complex of Bordetella Pertussis

Date: December 2001
Creator: Dill, Michael T
Description: An aspartate transcarbamoylase (ATCase) gene from Bordetella pertussis was amplified by PCR and ligated into pT-ADV for expression in Escherichia coli. This particular ATCase (pyrB) was an inactive gene found adjacent to an inactive dihydroorotase (DHOase) gene (pyrC'). This experiment was undertaken to determine whether this pyrB gene was capable of expression alone or if it was capable of expression only when cotransformed with a functional pyrC'. When transformed into E. coli TB2 pyrB-, the gene did not produce any ATCase activity. The gene was then co-transformed into E. coli TB2 pyrB- along with a plasmid containing the pyrC' gene from Pseudomonas aeruginosa and assayed for ATCase activity. Negative results were again recorded.
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General Biology Lecture and Laboratory Curriculum Outline in a Two or Four-Year College

General Biology Lecture and Laboratory Curriculum Outline in a Two or Four-Year College

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Date: August 2000
Creator: Moreland, Amy L.
Description: In July of 1999, I wrote to 24 Texas junior and community colleges (and one four-year institution) describing my thesis agenda of a general biology lecture and laboratory syllabus for introductory biology students. I requested the titles and authors of the general biology textbooks and laboratory manuals they were currently using, the publishers of these texts, and the edition of said texts. I then contacted publishers of the various textbooks who, in turn, directed me to the Dallas-area representatives for further inquiries. I assimilated the various authors' general biology topics into a two-semester syllabus of lecture and one semester of laboratory. The document is not a text manuscript, but an all-inclusive listing of a general biology syllabus broken down by subject.
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Anatomy and Physiology Syllabus for Community Colleges

Anatomy and Physiology Syllabus for Community Colleges

Date: May 2000
Creator: Schulz, Leslie
Description: This syllabus includes both lecture notes and laboratory activities for a two-semester anatomy and physiology community college course. The syllabus is based on a 16-week semester that is comprised of a three-hour lecture section and a one-hour laboratory class each week. Both the lecture course and laboratory are necessary to fulfill the requirement for anatomy and physiology. Laboratory activities coincide with lectures to enhance understanding of each topic by providing visual and hands-on experiments for the concepts learned in the lecture. Laboratory quizzes will be given each week to help students maintain a working knowledge of the material learned in the laboratory. This course is appropriate for the typical anatomy and physiology student and should benefit both students who plan to major in biology and also those who are non-biology majors. Because subject matter in anatomy and physiology is quite difficult, the importance of attendance and good study skills is stressed.
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Integration of field-based analysis of plant community dynamics with quantitative analysis of landscape change in the Ray Roberts Lake area, 1987—1997

Integration of field-based analysis of plant community dynamics with quantitative analysis of landscape change in the Ray Roberts Lake area, 1987—1997

Date: May 2000
Creator: McDonough, Theresa J.
Description: This study focused on the effectiveness of integrating traditional plant community analyses with landscape ecological analyses based on remotely sensed data. A temporal analysis of plant community diversity was conducted for major plant communities of the Ray Roberts Lake area using transect monitoring data collected between 1987 and 1997. Landscape analyses were performed with FRAGSTATS*ARC using classified SPOT satellite imagery for 1987 and 1997. Although the methodology developed in this work was exploratory, it was found that characterizing the dynamics of major plant communities in the study area produced a more effective and insightful analysis of Ray Roberts Lake area landscape dynamics.
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Genetics Lecture and Laboratory Syllabus for a Junior-Level Course

Genetics Lecture and Laboratory Syllabus for a Junior-Level Course

Date: August 1999
Creator: Harper, Kasey
Description: The following is a complete syllabus for a college level genetics course. The syllabus contains lecture outlines and notes for each chapter, along with a list of transparencies needed. The quizzes and exams are prepared and placed at the beginning of the syllabus. The beginning of the course will consist of a lecture to introduce the students to the basics of genetics, followed by many applications of genetics. The process of cell division will be mastered by the students, as well as Mendelian genetics, quantitative genetics, chromosome mapping, and inheritance. The replication, synthesis, and organization of DNA are also discussed within the lectures. The final topics that will be covered using this syllabus are genetics of cancer and immunology and population genetics. These topics are essential for a detailed genetics course. The syllabus is written in great detail, and will require a full semester to be completed. The book used in association with this syllabus is Essentials of Genetics by William S. Klug and Michael R. Cummings.
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The Role of Rainfed Farm Ponds in Sustaining Agriculture and Soil Conservation in the Dry High Valley Region of Cochabamba, Bolivia: Design Considerations and Post Impoundment Analysis

The Role of Rainfed Farm Ponds in Sustaining Agriculture and Soil Conservation in the Dry High Valley Region of Cochabamba, Bolivia: Design Considerations and Post Impoundment Analysis

Date: August 1999
Creator: Kuiper, John R.
Description: Lack of sufficient water for irrigation is a major problem in and around the valleys surrounding the town of Aiquile, Cochabamba Bolivia. In addition, much of the region is undergoing desertification compounded by drought, deforestation, bad traditional agricultural practices, over grazing and a "torrential" rainfall pattern leading to severe soil erosion and low agricultural production. Between 1992 and 1994, the author constructed a network of 24 small, mostly rainfed farm ponds to increase agricultural production and alleviate soil erosion and land-use problems by improving cover conditions. A 5-year post-impoundment analysis was carried out in 1998. The analysis examined current pond conditions, design criteria, irrigation water / crop production increases and the alleviation of land-use problems. Current pond conditions fell into four distinct categories with only 25 percent of the ponds being deemed as "functioning well." The project increased irrigation in the region and improved cover conditions in 66 percent of the pond sites.
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A Comparison of Predicted and Actual Trophic Status of Lake Ray Roberts, Texas Based on Chlorophyll A

A Comparison of Predicted and Actual Trophic Status of Lake Ray Roberts, Texas Based on Chlorophyll A

Date: May 1999
Creator: Lytle, Lili Lisa
Description: Two years before impoundment, the trophic status of Lake Ray Roberts was predicted by applying the total phosphorus input into the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) eutrophication model. Predicted mean summer epilimnetic (MSE) chlorophyll a of Elm Fork arm, Isle duBois arm and Main Body were in the eutrophic category of the OECD model. Observed MSE chlorophyll a two years after impoundment of Elm Fork arm, Isle duBois and Main Body had not reached their predicted means and were at the mesotrophic-eutrophic boundary of the OECD model. Six years after impoundment, observed MSE chlorophyll a for Main Body, was closer to its predicted mean and in the eutrophic category of the OECD model. Six years after impoundment, Elm Fork arm was the most productive area of Lake Ray Roberts. Observed means of chlorophyll a, total phosphates, suspended solids and turbidity were often highest in the Elm Fork arm. Wastewater effluent from Gainesville and Valley View, TX, had an impact on productivity in Elm Fork arm.
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Life History and Case-building Behavior of Molanna Tryphena Betten (Trichoptera: Molannidae) in Two East Texas Spring-fed Streams

Life History and Case-building Behavior of Molanna Tryphena Betten (Trichoptera: Molannidae) in Two East Texas Spring-fed Streams

Date: December 1998
Creator: Gupta, Tammi Spackman
Description: The life history and case-building behavior of Molanna tryphena from two spring-fed tributaries in East Texas were studied from January 1997 to May 1998.
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Development of an In Vitro Protoplast Culture System for Albizia Lebek (L.) Benth., an Economically Important Leguminous Tree

Development of an In Vitro Protoplast Culture System for Albizia Lebek (L.) Benth., an Economically Important Leguminous Tree

Date: August 1998
Creator: Sinha, Debleena
Description: An in vitro system of generating protoplasts from their callus cultures was established. The friable callus was more productive in terms of producing protoplasts than the green compact callus. The concentration of the various cell wall degrading enzymes had an effect on the viability of the protoplasts in the medium. The protoplast system developed from the experiments was stable and could be used for the transformation experiments of Albizia lebek and for other plant improvement practices.
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Estimated Extent and Fate of Chlorinated Solvent Contamination in the Soil of the Naval Air Station, Dallas, Texas

Estimated Extent and Fate of Chlorinated Solvent Contamination in the Soil of the Naval Air Station, Dallas, Texas

Date: August 1998
Creator: Trescott, Jill V. (Jill Virginia)
Description: This thesis estimates the spatial extent of chlorinated solvent contamination of the soil at the Naval Air Station, Dallas, then estimates the fate and transport of these contaminants, over time, using the Soil Transport and Fate database and the Vadose-Zone Interactive Processes (VIP) modeling software. Geostatistical analysis identifies two areas with serious chlorinated solvent contamination. Fate and transport modeling estimates that this contamination will degrade and disperse from the soil phase to below regulatory limits within one year, although there is a risk of groundwater contamination. Contaminants are estimated to persist in the water and air phases of the soil. Further sampling is recommended to confirm the results of this study.
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Callibaetis Floridanus (Ephemeroptera: Baetidae) Life History and Production in a West Texas Playa

Callibaetis Floridanus (Ephemeroptera: Baetidae) Life History and Production in a West Texas Playa

Date: May 1998
Creator: Anderson, Gregory (Gregory Mark)
Description: A life history study of Callibaetis floridanus was conducted over the wet cycle of a playa on the Southern High Plains of Texas from June through September 1995.
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