2021 Spring

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Now showing 1 - 5 of 21
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    Seasonal Prevalence and Host Specificity of Lawrencarus sp. Mites in Anuran Hosts
    (Florida Southern College, 2021-05) Smith, Emma
    Ereynetid mites of the subfamily Lawrencarinae are small, free-living, endoparasitic mites found in the nasal passages of anuran hosts. While the physical and physiological attributes of the Lawrencarena subfamily have been described, there is little else known about this group of mites. This current study experimentally explores the anuran hosts, specificity of these parasitic mites and establishes the seasonal prevalence, abundance and host specificity of Lawrencarus cf. hylae mites in anurans over a year-long collection period near Lakeland Highland Scrub in Lakeland, Florida. A total of 378 endoparasitic mites were collected from the nasal cavity of Rana sphenocephala (Southern Leopard Frog). Seasonal prevalence, mean abundance, and mean intensity were not significantly different between male and female hosts, and there was no correlation found between host snout-vent length and parasite intensity for male and female hosts. The prevalence of infections in R. sphenocephala reached a peak of 90% in the fall, but never dropped below 60% during any season; mean abundance peaked in the spring, and the fewest mites were collected in the winter. The abundance of natural infection in R. sphenocephala in comparison to other anuran species studied could be an indication of host species preference. In experimental infections, the prevalence of infection of each anuran host was above 40%, and choice experimental infections indicated a preference of R. sphenocephala with a prevalence of infection of 100%. Overall, this study provides an investigation into the host specificity and preference of Lawrencarus cf. hylae mites, which presents insights into an understudied endoparasitic species.
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    Invasive Parasites: A survey of endoparasites in Salvator merianae populations in Florida
    (Florida Southern College, 2021-05) Fonseca, Marisa; Langford, Gabriel J.
    The Argentine Black and White Tegu (Salvator meriane) is a large lizard native to South America that has been introduced to central and south Florida. With successful breeding populations in at least two locations, and the ability to acclimate to many temperate climates of the other southeastern states, it is becoming increasingly more important to monitor all biological aspects of this invasive lizard, including their parasites. No detailed published records exist on the endoparasites from these invasive populations. Thirty-one Argentine Black and White Tegus from central and southern Florida were necropsied to perform an extensive parasite examination of these invasive populations. The necropsies revealed that the tegus brought three species of exotic nematode to Florida from South America (Physaloptera tupinambae, Diaphanocephalus galeatus, Cruzia lauroi) and were also infected with Raillietiella orientalis, a pentastome introduced to Florida via invasive Burmese Pythons (Python bivittatus). The invasive pentastome is known to infect native snakes and cause harm to their respiratory tracts. It is unknown how the exotic parasites from the tegus will impact native Florida reptiles, however, the ability for R. orientalis to infect the Argentine Black and White Tegu could lead to the rapid spread of this invasive parasite throughout the southeastern United States.
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    Movement and Physiology of Invasion Front Cane Toads (Rhinella marina) in Central Florida
    (Florida Southern College, 2021-04) Mazariegos, Kayleigh; Langford, Gabriel J.
    In Australia and Florida, cane toads (Rhinella marina) are an invasive species that have wreaked havoc on local ecosystems. Native to South and Central America, these toads secrete a toxin harmful to both fauna and humans, strongly impacting Florida wildlife. Previous studies in Australia have established that actively invading toads change morphologically to have longer limbs, greater speed, and greater endurance compared to those that remain established in a single population. However, our research in central Florida suggests that the opposite may be occurring at this invasion site. Our experimental studies on toads suggest that those at Florida invasion fronts have shorter limbs, lower muscle mass, and less endurance. In addition, surveys evaluating the movement of the invasion itself were taken over 6 years to follow the path of travel and establish mean migration across the state. Contrary to the rapid expansion in all directions seen in Australia, our invasion appears to follow human development such as roadways eastward from Tampa, Florida at a slow and steady pace. Additional research is required to establish a mechanism creating the discrepancies between the two populations of invasion and established toads in both Florida and Australia. Establishing the differences between the two groups can give key insight into the management strategy of this invasive species and help preserve the health of Florida's ecosystem.
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    Promising Young Women: Contemporary Case Studies in the Rape Revenge Fantasy Subgenre of Feature Films
    (Florida Southern College, 2021-05-07) Talbert, Sophie; Allen, William
    According to the Rape, Abuse, and Incest National Network, one out of every six American women has been the victim of an attempted or a completed rape during her lifetime (Scope of the Problem: Statistics | RAINN, n.d.). However, the American justice system is relatively inactive in their response to this issue, as the vast majority of sexual offenders will not go to jail or prison. In fact, out of every 1000 sexual assaults, 995 perpetrators will not face any consequences (The Criminal Justice System: Statistics RAINN, n.d.). The epidemic of sexual assault has been an issue for centuries, and continues to affect too a significant amount of men and women today. Due to its unfortunate prominence in society, several films include depictions of sexual assault or utilize the event as a key plot device in their stories.
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    Testing the Validity of the InjurySway App and Vibration’s Effect on Shoulder Control
    (Florida Southern College, 2021-05) Winton, Amber; Lynch, James M.; Marshall, Erica M.
    Upper extremity stability is critical for injury prevention. Vibration may improve proprioception, reducing injury risk. Mobile applications are accessible reliable tools to measure recovery in athletes. One research purpose investigated whether the InjurySway iPhone app is a valid measure of upper extremity proprioception. The other was whether an acute bout of shoulder exercise performed with an inexpensive vibration toy improves shoulder position sense. Each session, the subject held the phone on the palm, arm forward for 20 seconds both arms. Each subject then completed a Full Can exercise set with the randomly assigned Bumble Ball state (vibration/no vibration) and repeated the app stability measure. Subjects completed a session with the Closed Kinetic Chain Upper Extremity Stability Test (CKCUEST). Subjects assumed a pushup position and alternated touching two pieces of tape, 36 inches apart for 15 seconds. Thirty subjects (age 18-22) completed three trials. There was no correlation between path lengths of the conditions and CKCUEST touches. There was a significant decrease in sway over time for both conditions, but no significant difference between the two. Therefore, the Full Can exercise bout decreased sway, but vibration did not contribute to a significant difference. The InjurySway app is not a valid proprioception measure.