Pacific Science Volume 51, Number 2, 1997

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Pacific Science is a quarterly publication devoted to the biological and physical sciences of the Pacific Region.

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    Note on New Bivalve Records for Easter Island
    (University of Hawaii Press, 1997-04) Trego, Kent D.
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    Abundance and Diets of Rats in Two Native Hawaiian Forests
    (University of Hawaii Press, 1997-04) Sugihara, Robert T.
    Snap traps were set and monitored in two native Hawaiian rain forests on Maui, Hawai'i, to determine the relative abundances, distributions, and diets of rodents. Black rats (R. rattus), Polynesian rats (R. exulans), and mice (Mus musculus) were abundant throughout the mesic to wet forest habitat in both areas from 1600 to 2000 m elevation during both summer and winter trapping periods. Invertebrates, particularly insect larvae, were the most frequently found and abundant food item in the stomachs of both rat species. Consumption of these prey by rats was higher in winter than in summer. Black rats ate more fruits, seeds, and other vegetation than did Polynesian rats. More information about the life history, ecology, and behavior of rats in native Hawaiian forests is needed to document their impact on endemic ecosystems and to develop effective control techniques.
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    Striped Skinks in Oceania: The Status of Emoia caeruleocauda in Fiji
    (University of Hawaii Press, 1997-04) Zug, George R. ; Ineich, Ivan
    A rediscovered population of Emoia caeruleocauda from the Fiji Islands is compared with populations from Papua New Guinea, the Caroline Islands, and Vanuatu. Morphometrically, females from all populations are somewhat smaller than males, although males are significantly larger only in head length and width, and hindlimb length. Females and males do not appear dimorphic in scalation. Interpopulation comparison shows the populations to differ from one another in morphometry and scalation. In morphometry females and in scalation males and females of Fiji and Vanuatu and those of the Carolines and Papua are more similar to one another than each member of a pair is to members of the other pair. These patterns of variation suggest that the Fijian population of E. caeruleocauda is a native one and not introduced.
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    Additions to the Rust Fungi of Hawai'i
    (University of Hawaii Press, 1997-04) Gardner, Donald E.
    In a 1989 publication, the 74 species of rust fungi (order Uredinales) known to occur in Hawai'i were listed, based on newly collected material; herbarium specimens, principally those at the Bernice P. Bishop Museum (BISH); and information provided by F. L. Stevens in his 1925 publication on Hawaiian fungi. Stevens had noted an underrepresentation of this group in Hawai'i, which he attributed to the archipelago's isolation from continental landmasses. Since the time of the 1989 publication, 16 additional rusts have been recognized in Hawai'i. These include both recently introduced species, such as Coleosporium plumeriae Pat. on plumeria, and those recently discovered, such as Puccinia rugispora Gardner and P. rutainsulara Gardner on endemic Rutaceae. New host and location records and other important updating information on this well-defined group of fungi in Hawai'i are also included.
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    Coral Endolithic Algae: Life in a Protected Environment
    (University of Hawaii Press, 1997-04) Shashar, N. ; Banaszak, A.T. ; Lesser, M.P. ; Amrami, D.
    Endolithic algae inhabiting skeletons of living corals appear to be adapted to an extreme environment created by the coral. However, measurements on three coral species from the genus Porites revealed that these corals provide several modes of protection to the algae as well. High concentrations of ultraviolet (UV)-absorbing compounds, mycosporine-like amino acids (MAAs), were found in the tissues of all corals examined, but they were not detected in extracts of the endolithic algae. Coral tissues and skeleton filter 93.98-99.5% of the ambient UV radiation and thus shade the endolithic algae from this potentially damaging radiation. In addition endolithic algae are largely relieved from grazing pressure by herbivorous fish, because only 4% of fish bites on Porites corals resulted in exposed endolithic algae. Thus, the coral skeleton provides a refuge to the endolithic algae from some of the environmental pressures normally experienced by free-living algae on the reef.
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