Biodiversity and ecosystems

With successful reproduction and recruitment fundamental to the continued persistence of fish populations under future climate conditions, understanding the physiological mechanisms – including taxonomic and population variation – wherein high temperatures lead to reduced reproductive performance is crucial to identify and remediate any reproductive impairment caused by warming aquatic habitats. Future endocrine studies have an important role to play to that end, as understanding the hormone mechanisms that underlie reproductive inhibition at high temperature, as well as extending our understanding of those mechanisms to consider the potential ability for fish to acclimate either through prior developmental thermal experience or via transgenerational and epigenetic mechanisms (e.g., Veilleux et al., 2018), will be crucial for predicting how wild fish populations will be affected by climate warming. The results presented here and elsewhere for other species (e.g., Alix et al., 2020; Servili et al., 2020) have a crucial role to play by serving as a foundation to guide future research into how extreme warm temperatures predicted under future climate scenarios will impact fish reproduction.
Sperm production and function are vulnerable to heat, and heatwave conditions are forecast to increase as our climate warms, so we examined these effects on female reproduction and mating behaviour in the flour beetle, Tribolium castaneum, a promiscuous ectotherm model in which fertility is damaged by environmental warming. We tested whether polyandrous matings, or polyandrous sperm stores, protect females against reduced male fertility caused by heatwave conditions, and whether females flexibly adjust their remating behaviour to enable fertility rescue. We found that polyandry protected females against reduced male fertility: monogamous matings with males exposed to heatwave conditions halved female offspring production, but opportunities to mate with five of these males allowed normal female reproductive output.

Current Opinion in Green and Sustainable Chemistry, Volume 29, June 2021

Review on using the natural qualities of plants to restore degraded sites and water systems.
To mark World Environment Day 2021, RELX’s Global Head of Corporate Responsibility, Dr Márcia Balisciano, talks to Dr Dan Fiscus and Dr Brian Fath about this year's theme: Ecosystem Restoration. 
World Environment Day is the most renowned day for environmental action. Since 1974, it has been celebrated every year on June 5th, engaging governments, businesses, celebrities and citizens to focus their efforts on a pressing environmental issue. To mark World Environment Day 2021, Elsevier presents a curated list of free access journal articles and book chapters in support of this year's theme - Ecosystem Restoration.
OSPAR is a regional agreement by which 15 governments and the EU co-operate to protect the marine environment of the North-East Atlantic. The approach has a bearing on SDG 14.

Current Opinion in Environmental Science and Health, Volume 20, April 2021

One Health approach addresses good health and well-being at different levels of environment and human health . In this example One Health integrates antibiotic resistance among humans, animals, and the environment. Understanding this valuable and insightful process will help to restore biodiversity and ecosystems heading to a healthy planet.
The COVID-19 pandemic has stalled and rolled back progress on Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Ecosystem services (ESs), defined as the contributions of ecosystems to human well-being, underpin the achievement of SDGs. To promote SDG achievement in post-pandemic era, we teased out the links between ESs and SDGs while examining the impact of COVID-19. We found that ESs benefited all SDGs, yet man-made pressures led to degradation of ecosystems and their services. There is broad consensus that the virus lurks in degraded ecosystems and generates spillover due to human interference.
Proximity and size of the nearest market (‘market gravity’) have been shown to have strong negative effects on coral reef fish communities that can be mitigated by the establishment of closed areas. However, moray eels are functionally unique predators that are generally not subject to targeted fishing and should therefore not directly be affected by these factors. We used baited remote underwater video systems to investigate associations between morays and anthropogenic, habitat, and ecological factors in the Caribbean region.
Mangrove-dominated estuaries host a diverse microbial assemblage that facilitates nutrient and carbon conversions and could play a vital role in maintaining ecosystem health. In this study, we used 16S rRNA gene analysis, metabolic inference, nutrient concentrations, and δ C and δ N isotopes to evaluate the impact of land use change on near-shore biogeochemical cycles and microbial community structures within mangrove-dominated estuaries.