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2020 (281)

Sammendrag

Key words: VKM, risk assessment, Norwegian Scientific Committee for Food and Environment, Norwegian Environment Agency, mycorrhiza. Mycorrhiza is a beneficial association between plant roots and fungi. This mutualistic symbiosis is essential for plant growth in most natural terrestrial ecosystems and in agriculture. Commercial mycorrhizal products containing fungi and bacteria may promote plant growth, especially on sites without a natural microbial community. Due to the risk of unintended negative effects, introduction of new species or genetically different isolates of native species should always be considered carefully. This report assesses the risk of establishment and spread of six fungal species and six bacterial species included in different commercial mycorrhizal products, as well as the species’ potential impact on Norwegian biodiversity. Most of the evaluated fungi and bacteria are probably present in Norway, even though presence at present data only exist for two of the six fungal species. Establishment of the assessed fungi on the plants and sites where they are applied is considered moderately likely, with medium uncertainty, while establishment of the bacterial species is considered to range from very unlikely to very likely depending on the bacterial group, with low uncertainty. The probability of spread to the wider environment ranges from unlikely (four fungal species), to moderately likely (two fungal species), to very likely (five of the six bacterial species). However, for all species it is considered unlikely that establishment and spread would have negative effects on other native species, habitats and ecosystems in Norway.

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The product Limonica, with the predatory mite Amblydromalus limonicus as the active organism, is sought to be used as a biological control agent in Norway. Limonica is intended for use against western flower thrips (Frankliniella occidentallis), other thrips (e.g. Thrips tabaci), spider mites and whiteflies (e.g. Trialeurodes, Aleyrodes and Bemisia spp.) in protected horticultural crops such as cucumber, sweet pepper, strawberry and ornamentals. The product is not recommended for greenhouse-grown tomatoes. VKM’s conclusions are as follows Distribution, especially if the organism is found naturally in Norway Amblydromalus limonicus has a very wide natural distribution, being reported from New Zealand, Australia South America, Central America, and North America as well as Hawaii. It has also recently established populations in crop productions and non-crop vegetation in Catalonia, North Eastern Spain. Amblydromalus limonicus have not been observed in Norway. The species seems not to have the capability to enter diapause under unfavourable conditions and it is the view of VKM that it likely lacks the ability to survive and establish in areas with cold winters and chilly summers, as found in most parts of Norway under current climatic conditions. The potential of the organism for establishment and spread under Norwegian conditions specified for use in greenhouses and open field The thermal preference of A. limonicus restricts its establishment, and the species has not been observed outdoors in Norway. As the species is incapable of entering diapause it is the opinion of VKM that it is unlikely that A. limonicus will be able to establish in outdoor areas in Norway. However, the lack of detailed information on temperature tolerance of the species constitutes an uncertainty factor. The risk of spread from greenhouses is low because no wind or vector are likely to carry the mites from the greenhouse to suitable outdoor habitats. However, mites that have escaped from a greenhouses to may spread in the nature. All conclusions are uncertain due to lack of relevant information regarding the species’ climate tolerance. Its origin and current distribution suggest that it cannot survive cold winters. Any ambiguities regarding taxonomy that hamper risk assessment There are no taxonomic challenges related to the assessment of A. limonicus. Assessment of the product and the organism with regard to possible health risks VKM Report 2020: 13 8 VKM is unaware of reports where harm to humans has been observed, whether by A. limonicus itself. Mites may, however, produce allergic reactions in sensitive individuals handling plant material with high numbers of individuals. There is reason to believe that this holds true also for A. limonicus. Key words: VKM, risk assessment, Norwegian Scientific Committee for Food and Environment, Norwegian Food Safety Authority, biological control, predatory mite

Sammendrag

Atheta-System with the rove beetle Atheta coriaria (Kraatz 1856) as the active organism is sought to be used as a biocontrol agent for augmentation biological control in Norway. Atheta-System is intended for use against soil dwelling stages of fungus gnats (e.g. Bradysia paupera), shore flies (Scatella stagnalis), and thrips (e.g. Frankliniella occidentallis) in greenhouses, plastic tunnels, and other closed or controlled climate cultivations of horticultural crops, incl. soft-fruit crops, vegetables, ornamentals, and kitchen herbs. VKM’s conclusions are as follows Distribution, especially if the organism is found naturally in Norway Atheta coriaria is established (naturalized) in Norway since 1919 and has been reported numerous times from Agder in the South to Trøndelag in mid-Norway. The potential of the organism for establishment and spread under Norwegian conditions specified for use in greenhouses and open field The thermal thresholds of A. coriaria are not well-studied, but its current distribution in Southern and mid-Scandinavia shows that it tolerates relatively low winter temperatures, and that the Norwegian summer climate allows for successful reproduction. A. coriaria overwinters in the soil, which provides a relatively sheltered environment. Adults disperse rapidly by flying. All life stages can be vectored by humans – mainly by movement of soil and compost material. Thus, further spread northwards in Norway is predicted irrespective of additional introductions. It is unknown if it can enter diapause under greenhouse conditions. Any ambiguities regarding the taxonomy which hamper risk assessment There are no major taxonomic challenges related to the assessment of A. coriaria. Assessment of the product and the organism with regard to possible health risk VKM is unaware of reports of harm inflicted to humans by A. coriaria itself. Atheta-System comes with the cosmopolitan cheese mite (Tyrophagus putrescentiae), serving as food for A. coriaria. As with most mites, T. putrescentiae may induce allergic reactions in sensitive persons handling the product. Key words: VKM, risk assessment, Norwegian Scientific Committee for Food and Environment, Norwegian Food Safety Authority, biological control, rove beetle

Sammendrag

Land use and climate change can impact water quality in agricultural catchments. The objectives were to assess long-term monitoring data to quantify changes to the thermal growing season length, investigate farmer adaptations to this and examine these and other factors in relation to total nitrogen and nitrate water concentrations. Data (1991–2017) from seven small Norwegian agricultural catchments were analysed using Mann–Kendall Trend Tests, Pearson correlation and a linear mixed model. The growing season length increased significantly in four of seven catchments. In catchments with cereal production, the increased growing season length corresponded to a reduction in nitrogen concentrations, but there was no such relationship in grassland catchments. In one cereal catchment, a significant correlation was found between the start of sowing and start of the thermal growing season. Understanding the role of the growing season and other factors can provide additional insight into processes and land use choices taking place in agricultural catchments.

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Late-spring frosts (LSFs) affect the performance of plants and animals across the world’s temperate and boreal zones, but despite their ecological and economic impact on agriculture and forestry, the geographic distribution and evolutionary impact of these frost events are poorly understood. Here, we analyze LSFs between 1959 and 2017 and the resistance strategies of Northern Hemisphere woody species to infer trees’ adaptations for minimizing frost damage to their leaves and to forecast forest vulnerability under the ongoing changes in frost frequencies. Trait values on leaf-out and leaf-freezing resistance come from up to 1,500 temperate and boreal woody species cultivated in common gardens. We find that areas in which LSFs are common, such as eastern North America, harbor tree species with cautious (late-leafing) leaf-out strategies. Areas in which LSFs used to be unlikely, such as broad-leaved forests and shrublands in Europe and Asia, instead harbor opportunistic tree species (quickly reacting to warming air temperatures). LSFs in the latter regions are currently increasing, and given species’ innate resistance strategies, we estimate that ∼35% of the European and ∼26% of the Asian temperate forest area, but only ∼10% of the North American, will experience increasing late-frost damage in the future. Our findings reveal region-specific changes in the spring-frost risk that can inform decision-making in land management, forestry, agriculture, and insurance policy.

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Integration of technology is commonplace in forestry equipment supporting higher levels of automation and efficiency. For technology adoption to be successful it must demonstrate improvement in productivity, cost–effectiveness or in human factors and ergonomics. Cable yarding lends itself to automation with repetitive machine movement along a fixed corridor, as established by the skyline. This study aimed at investigating the difference in productivity between the two possible settings (manual and automated) of a Valentini V850 yarder equipped with automatic path programming, with a Bergwald 3-t carriage and radio controlled chokers. The study took place in the northern Italian Alpine eastern region over a period of 8 days on two separate corridors, resulting in 280 measured cycles split between manual and automated. Results in terms of absolute numbers were very close for the two system options, but significant differences were found. For example, inhaul time was longer, but outhaul time shorter for the automated system. Productivity ranged from 8.2 to 13.3 m3 PMH-1, and cost from approximately 20 to 30 € m-3. The automated system did achieve a significantly higher productivity, but differences declined with extraction distance. When that was combined with the slightly higher cost for the automated system, the automated system was more cost-effective on extraction distances less than 200 m, and the manual system on longer distances.

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Paleo-environmental data show that the distribution of African rain forests was affected by Quaternary climate changes. In particular, the Dahomey Gap (DG) – a 200 km wide savanna corridor currently separating the West African and Central African rain forest blocks and containing relict rain forest fragments – was forested during the mid-Holocene and possibly during previous interglacial periods, whereas it was dominated by open vegetation (savanna) during glacial periods. Genetic signatures of past population fragmentation and demographic changes have been found in some African forest plant species using nuclear markers, but such events appear not to have been synchronous or shared across species. To better understand the colonization history of the DG by rain forest trees through seed dispersal, the plastid genomes of two widespread African forest legume trees, Anthonotha macrophylla and Distemonanthus benthamianus, were sequenced in 47 individuals for each species, providing unprecedented phylogenetic resolution of their maternal lineages (857 and 115 SNPs, respectively). Both species exhibit distinct lineages separating three regions: 1. Upper Guinea (UG, i.e. the West African forest block), 2. the area ranging from the DG to the Cameroon volcanic line (CVL), and 3. Lower Guinea (LG, the western part of the Central African forest block) where three lineages co-occur. In both species, the DG populations (including southern Nigeria west of Cross River) exhibit much lower genetic diversity than UG and LG populations, and their plastid lineages originate from the CVL, confirming the role of the CVL as an ancient forest refuge. Despite the similar phylogeographic structures displayed by A. macrophylla and D. benthamianus, molecular dating indicates very contrasting ages of lineage divergence (UG diverged from LG since c. 7 Ma and 0.7 Ma, respectively) and DG colonization (probably following the Mid Pleistocene Transition and the Last Glacial Maximum, respectively). The stability of forest refuge areas and repeated similar forest shrinking/expanding events during successive glacial periods might explain why similar phylogeographic patterns can be generated over contrasting timescales.

Sammendrag

Nation-wide Sentinel-2 mosaics were used with National Forest Inventory (NFI) plot data for modelling and subsequent mapping of spruce-, pine-, and deciduous-dominated forest in Norway at a 16 m × 16 m resolution. The accuracies of the best model ranged between 74% for spruce and 87% for deciduous forest. An overall accuracy of 90% was found on stand level using independent data from more than 42 000 stands. Errors mostly resulting from a forest mask reduced the model accuracies by ∼10%. The produced map was subsequently used to generate model-assisted (MA) and poststratified (PS) estimates of species-specific forest area. At the national level, efficiencies of the estimates increased by 20% to 50% for MA and up to 90% for PS. Greater minimum numbers of observations constrained the use of PS. For MA estimates of municipalities, efficiencies improved by up to a factor of 8 but were sometimes also less than 1. PS estimates were always equally as or more precise than direct and MA estimates but were applicable in fewer municipalities. The tree species prediction map is part of the Norwegian forest resource map and is used, among others, to improve maps of other variables of interest such as timber volume and biomass.

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In the last two decades, attention on forests and ownership rights has increased in different domains of international policy, particularly in relation to achieving the global sustainable development goals. This paper looks at the changes in forest-specific legislation applicable to regular productive forests, across 28 European countries. We compare the legal framework applicable in the mid-1990s with that applicable in 2015, using the Property Rights Index in Forestry (PRIF) to measure changes across time and space. The paper shows that forest owners in most western European countries already had high decision-making power in the mid-1990s, following deregulation trends from the 1980s; and for the next two decades, distribution of rights remained largely stable. For these countries, the content and direction of changes indicate that the main pressure on forest-focused legislation comes from environmental discourses (e.g. biodiversity and climate change policies). In contrast, former socialist countries in the mid-1990s gave lower decision-making powers to forest owners than in any of the Western Europe countries; over the next 20 years these show remarkable changes in management, exclusion and withdrawal rights. As a result of these changes, there is no longer a clear line between western and former socialist countries with respect to the national governance systems used to address private forest ownership. Nevertheless, with the exception of Baltic countries which have moved towards the western forest governance system, most of the former socialist countries still maintain a state-centred approach in private forest management. Overall, most of the changes we identified in the last two decades across Europe were recorded in the categories of management rights and exclusion rights. These changes reflect the general trend in European forest policies to expand and reinforce the landowners’ individual rights, while preserving minimal rights for other categories of forest users; and to promote the use of financial instruments when targeting policy goals related to the environmental discourse.

Sammendrag

Optimizing phosphorus (P) application to agricultural soils is fundamental to crop production and water quality protection. We sought to relate soil P tests and P sorption characteristics to both crop yield response to P application and environmentally critical soil P status. Barley (Hordeum vulgare L.) was grown in pot experiments with 45 soils of different P status. Half the pots were fertilized at 20 kg P ha−1, and half received no P. Soils were extracted with ammonium lactate, sodium bicarbonate (Olsen P), dilute salt (0.0025 M CaCl2), and diffusive gradient in thin films. Soil adsorption coefficients were determined using the Freundlich isotherm equation, and the degree of P saturation was determined from both oxalate and ammonium lactate extracted Fe, Al, and P. All soil P analyses showed a nonlinear and significant relationship with yield response to P application, and all analyses manifested a threshold value above which no P response was observed. For the commonly used ammonium lactate test, inclusion of Al and Fe improved prediction of plant‐available soil P. The threshold for yield response coincided with the environmentally critical values determined from the degree of P saturation. Results support the conclusion that soil P levels for which no P application is needed also have elevated risk of P loss to runoff.

Sammendrag

I kapittelet redegjør vi for hvordan veterinær grensekontroll er regulert gjennom EØS-avtalen, og hvilke konsekvenser dette har for den norske sjømateksporten. I kapittelet analyseres de videre konsekvensene av måter å regulere veterinær grensekontroll på gjennom alternative tilknytningsformer til EU: 1) Ingen avtale med EU, der EUs tredjelandsbestemmelser gjelder; 2) frihandelsavtale med EU (jf. Færøyene, Chile, Canada); og 3) sektoravtaler med EU innenfor en bred handelspolitisk ramme (jf. Sveits).

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Forest structural properties largely govern surface fluxes of moisture, energy, and momentum that strongly affect regional climate and hydrology. Forest structural properties are greatly shaped by forest management activities, especially in the Fennoscandia (Norway, Sweden, and Finland). Insight into transient developments in forest structure in response to management intervention is therefore essential to understanding the role of forest management in mitigating regional climate change. The aim of this study is to present a simple grid-based framework – the Fennoscandic Forest State Simulator (F2S2) -- for predicting time-dependent forest structural trajectories in a manner compatible with land models employed in offline or asynchronously coupled climate and hydrological research. F2S2 enables the prescription of future regional forest structure as a function of: i) exogenously defined scenarios of forest harvest intensity; ii) forest management intensity; iii) climate forcing. We demonstrate its application when applied as a stand-alone tool for forecasting three alternative future forest states in Norway that differ with respect to background climate forcing, forest harvest intensity (linked to two Shared Socio-economic Pathways (SSPs)), and forest management intensity. F2S2 captures impacts of climate forcing and forest management on general trends in forest structural development over time, and while climate is the main driver of longer-term forest structural dynamics, the role of harvests and other management-driven effects cannot be overlooked. To our knowledge this is the first paper presenting a method to map forest structure in space and time in a way that is compatible with land surface or hydrological models employing sub-grid tiling.

Sammendrag

Regjeringens bioøkonomistrategi, Kjente ressurser – uante muligheter, fra 2016, fremhever at den fremtidige bioøkonomien må være bærekraftig. Når en større del av våre behov skal dekkes med utgangspunkt i fornybare biologiske res¬surser, vil vi måtte høste mer av disse ressursene – selv om det også er et mål å utnytte ressursene bedre. Disse ressursene skal imidlertid høstes på det samme landarealet som utgjør leveområder for sjeldne arter og verdifulle naturtyper. Og disse har vi også forpliktelser overfor, gjennom FNs bærekraftsmål og konvensjonen om biologisk mangfold. Her ligger det en mulig konflikt mel¬lom ulike interesser. Hvordan kan vi øke og effektivisere uttaket av fornybare biologiske ressurser på en måte som ikke kommer i konflikt med målet om å sikre naturmangfoldet og målet om en miljømessig bærekraftig bioøkonomi? I denne sammenhengen er det nødvendig å være oppmerksom på at de land¬baserte fornybare biologiske ressursene til en viss grad konkurrerer om det samme arealet. Og det kan være slik at å produsere mer av én ressurs reduserer muligheten for å produsere en annen. Det finnes heller ikke noen omforent fasit for hva som er en miljømessig bærekraftig løsning. Dette er komplekse sammenhenger, og svaret kan vi ikke få gjennom noe enkelt regnestykke. Men ved hjelp av geografiske analyser kan vi belyse noen av de mulige utfordrin¬gene. I dette kapitlet legger vi frem analyser vi har gjort av forholdet mellom areal og potensielt økt uttak av skog. Vi har også analysert hvordan et slikt uttak kan komme til å påvirke rødlistede arter. Avslutningsvis ser vi nærmere på arealkonflikter som kan oppstå dersom skogarealet økes. Målet med analy¬sene er å bidra til en mest mulig kunnskapsbasert forvaltning av de landbaserte fornybare biologiske ressursene, samtidig som vi kommer nærmere målet om å sikre en bioøkonomi som også er miljømessig bærekraftig.

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Climatic impacts are especially pronounced in the Arctic, which as a region is warming twice as fast as the rest of the globe. Here, we investigate how mean climatic conditions and rates of climatic change impact parasitoid insect communities in 16 localities across the Arctic. We focus on parasitoids in a widespread habitat, Dryas heathlands, and describe parasitoid community composition in terms of larval host use (i.e., parasitoid use of herbivorous Lepidoptera vs. pollinating Diptera) and functional groups differing in their closeness of host associations (koinobionts vs. idiobionts). Of the latter, we expect idiobionts—as being less fine‐tuned to host development—to be generally less tolerant to cold temperatures, since they are confined to attacking hosts pupating and overwintering in relatively exposed locations. To further test our findings, we assess whether similar climatic variables are associated with host abundances in a 22 year time series from Northeast Greenland. We find sites which have experienced a temperature rise in summer while retaining cold winters to be dominated by parasitoids of Lepidoptera, with the reverse being true for the parasitoids of Diptera. The rate of summer temperature rise is further associated with higher levels of herbivory, suggesting higher availability of lepidopteran hosts and changes in ecosystem functioning. We also detect a matching signal over time, as higher summer temperatures, coupled with cold early winter soils, are related to high herbivory by lepidopteran larvae, and to declines in the abundance of dipteran pollinators. Collectively, our results suggest that in parts of the warming Arctic, Dryas is being simultaneously exposed to increased herbivory and reduced pollination. Our findings point to potential drastic and rapid consequences of climate change on multitrophic‐level community structure and on ecosystem functioning and highlight the value of collaborative, systematic sampling effort.

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New mortality models were developed for the purpose of improving long-term growth and yield simulations in Finland, Norway, and Sweden and were based on permanent national forest inventory plots from Sweden and Norway. Mortality was modelled in two steps. The first model predicts the probability of survival, while the second model predicts the proportion of basal area in surviving trees for plots where mortality has occurred. In both models, the logistic function was used. The models incorporate the variation in prediction period length and in plot size. Validation of both models indicated unbiased mortality rates with respect to various stand characteristics such as stand density, average tree diameter, stand age, and the proportion of different tree species, Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.), Norway spruce (Picea abies (L.) Karst.), and broadleaves. When testing against an independent dataset of unmanaged spruce-dominated stands in Finland, the models provided unbiased prediction with respect to stand age.

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An understanding of the relationship between volume increment and stand density (basal area, stand density index, etc.) is of utmost importance for properly managing stand density to achieve specific management objectives. There are two main approaches to analyse growth–density relationships. The first relates volume increment to stand density through a basic relationship, which can vary with site productivity, age, and potentially incorporates treatment effects. The second is to relate the volume increment and density of thinned experimental plots relative to that of an unthinned experimental plot on the same site. Using a dataset of 229 thinned and unthinned experimental plots of Norway spruce, a growth model is developed describing the relationship between gross or net volume increment and basal area. The models indicate that gross volume increases with increasing basal area up to 50 m2 and thereafter becomes constant out to the maximum basal area. Alternatively, net volume increment was maximized at a basal area of 43 m2 and decreased with further increases in basal area. However, the models indicated a wide range where net volume increment was essentially constant, varying by less than 1 m3 ha−1 year−1. An analysis of different thinning scenarios indicated that the relative relationship between volume increment and stand density was dynamic and changed over the course of a rotation.

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The effective size of a population (Ne), which determines its level of neutral variability, is a key evolutionary parameter. Ne can substantially depart from census sizes of present-day breeding populations (NC) as a result of past demographic changes, variation in life-history traits and selection at linked sites. Using genome-wide data we estimated the long-term coalescent Ne for 17 pinniped species represented by 36 population samples (total n = 458 individuals). Ne estimates ranged from 8,936 to 91,178, were highly consistent within (sub)species and showed a strong positive correlation with NC (R2adj = 0.59; P = 0.0002). Ne/NC ratios were low (mean, 0.31; median, 0.13) and co-varied strongly with demographic history and, to a lesser degree, with species’ ecological and life-history variables such as breeding habitat. Residual variation in Ne/NC, after controlling for past demographic fluctuations, contained information about recent population size changes during the Anthropocene. Specifically, species of conservation concern typically had positive residuals indicative of a smaller contemporary NC than would be expected from their long-term Ne. This study highlights the value of comparative population genomic analyses for gauging the evolutionary processes governing genetic variation in natural populations, and provides a framework for identifying populations deserving closer conservation attention.

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In a number of pathosystems involving the powdery mildews (Erysiphales), plant stress is associated with decreased disease susceptibility and is detrimental to pathogen growth and reproduction. However, in strawberry, anecdotal observations associate severe powdery mildew (Podosphaera aphanis) with water stress. In a 2017 survey of 42 strawberry growers in Norway and California, 40 growers agreed with a statement that water-stressed strawberry plants were more susceptible to powdery mildew compared with nonstressed plants. In repeated in vitro and in vivo experiments, we found that water stress was consistently and significantly unfavorable to conidial germination, infection, and increases in disease severity. Deleterious effects on the pathogen were observed from both preinoculation and postinoculation water stress in the host. Soil moisture content in the range from 0 to 50% was correlated (R2 = 0.897) with germinability of conidia harvested from extant colonies that developed on plants growing at different levels of water stress. These studies confirm that P. aphanis fits the norm for biotrophic powdery mildews and hosts under stress. Mild water stress, compared with a state of optimal hydration, is likely to decrease rather than increase susceptibility of strawberry to P. aphanis. We believe it is possible that foliar symptoms of leaf curling due to diffuse and inconspicuous infection of the lower leaf surfaces by P. aphanis could easily be mistakenly attributed to water stress, which we observed as having a nearly identical leaf curling symptom in strawberry.

Sammendrag

BACKGROUND: Bud dormancy is a quantitative condition that is gradually acquired and lost. Better and more convenient methods for assessment of the time of dormancy entrance of woody plants are highly needed. OBJECTIVE: To demonstrate a simple and convenient method for determination of dormancy in woody plants. METHODS: We employed a seasonal series of soft tipping of vigorously growing annual shoots and used the loss of ability of subtending lateral buds to break and grow as a measure of entrance into dormancy. RESULTS: There was a gradual decline in the ability of the buds to burst and grow during the month of July and early August, culminating with a complete loss of this ability. This coincided with the known time of growth cessation and dormancy induction in shoots of intact plants and occurred in the berry shrubs raspberry and black currant and the forest tree silver birch. CONCLUSIONS: The decline and loss of ability of the buds to grow during late summer is a direct expression of the entrance of buds into the state of endodormancy, rendering the tipping method a simple and convenient method for precise determination of the time of entrance into dormancy in woody plants.

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1. Altered species composition caused by environmental and climatic change can affect the transfer of plant residues among communities. Whereas transferred residues are typically considered a resource in recipient systems, residues of allelopathic species may instead cause interference. 2. Evergreen dwarf shrubs, specifically the allelopathic species Empetrum nigrum are increasing in abundance in response to a warming climate. Empetrum has small, evergreen leaves that can be transferred to other communities when withered and lost from the plant. 3. We hypothesize that Empetrum can have allelopathic effects in the recipient communities of the withered leaves. We call this allochthonous allelopathy as opposed to autochthonous allelopathy, which is well documented in communities where the plant grows. 4. We measured influx of allochthonous Empetrum leaves onto snow-covered snowbeds, where they are easily identified within the debris. Next, we compared the bioactivity of allochthonous withered leaves with that of green Empetrum leaves. Finally, we conducted an experiment testing the germination and seedling growth of 10 tundra species in snowbed soil supplemented with no (control) and three densities of allochthonous Empetrum leaves. 5. We found Empetrum leaves to be common on the snow cover of snowbeds. We found Empetrum leaves collected on snowbeds to be as bioactive as green leaves. Finally, we found forb species to have reduced germination and all 10 species to have delayed seedling development when growing in snowbed soil supplemented with withered Empetrum leaves. Seedlings under the control treatment were 2.3 times longer and had 3.2 times more leaves in comparison to seedlings grown under the strongest allochthonous leaf treatment. 6. Results from our study imply that Empetrum is allelopathic in recipient systems of its allochthonous leaves. The abundant nature of Empetrum in the tundra suggests that allochthonous allelopathy is a common phenomenon, causing biotic stress in snowbeds and potentially other parts of the tundra. Exemplifying the ability of a plant to interfere in neighbouring communities, our study demonstrates a plant trait that may provide insight to other study systems.

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BACKGROUND:The predicted and ongoing climate warming can have far-reaching effects on plant growth and life cycle. Therefore, there is need for simple and convenient methods for analysis and monitoring of consequences of the ongoing warming. OBJECTIVE:To demonstrate the usefulness of so-called climate-photothermographs for studying the consequences of the ongoing warming for production of berry crops. METHODS:Local photothermal climates can be expressed by so-called climate-photothermographs, which show the relationship between temperature and daylength for each month of the year in a rectangular coordinate diagram. When superimposing critical response curves for plant development processes on top of such a diagram, the limitations of the given climate for fulfilment of the processes can be readily assessed. RESULTS:Consequences of 2°C warming for critical development processes such as transition to flowering and breaking of winter dormancy in the berry crops raspberry, black currant and strawberry were clearly exposed by the technique. The locations Geisenheim, Germany and Ås, Norway were used as examples. Inadequate winter chill was identified as the most limiting factor for these crops. CONCLUSIONS:We conclude that the technique is an efficient and convenient tool for monitoring the consequences of climate warming for berry crops.

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Reference conditions of water bodies are defined as the natural or minimal anthropogenically disturbed state. We compared the methods for determining total phosphorus and total nitrogen concentrations in rivers in Finland, Norway and Sweden as well as the established reference conditions and evaluated the possibility for transfer and harmonisation of methods. We found that both methods and values differed, especially for lowland rivers with a high proportion of agriculture in the catchment. Since Denmark has not yet set reference conditions for rivers, two of the Nordic methods were tested for Danish conditions. We conclude that some of the established methods are promising but that further development is required. We moreover argue that harmonisation of reference conditions is needed to obtain common benchmarks for assessing the impacts of current and future land use changes on water quality.

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Effective evidence-based nature conservation and habitat management relies on developing and refining our methodological toolbox for detecting critical ecological changes at an early stage. This requires not only optimizing the use and integration of evidence from available data, but also optimizing methods for dealing with imperfect knowledge and data deficiencies. For policy and management relevance, ecological data are often synthesized into indicators, which are assessed against reference levels and limit values. Here we explore challenges and opportunities in defining ecological condition in relation to a reference condition reflecting intact ecosystems, as well as setting limit values for good ecological condition, linked to critical ecological thresholds in dose–response relationships between pressures and condition variables. These two concepts have been widely studied and implemented in aquatic sciences, but rarely in terrestrial systems. In this paper, we address practical considerations, theoretical challenges and possible solutions using different approaches to determine reference and limit values for good ecological condition in terrestrial ecosystems, based on empirical experiences from a case study in central Norway. We present five approaches for setting indicator reference values for intact ecosystems: absolute biophysical boundaries, reference areas, reference communities, ecosystem dynamics based models, and habitat availability based models. We further present four approaches for identifying indicator limit values for good ecological condition: empirically estimated values, statistical distributions, assumed linear relationships, and expert judgement-based limits. This exercise highlights the versatile and robust nature of ecological condition assessments based on reference and limit values for different management purposes, for situations where knowledge of the underlying relationships is lacking, and for situations limited by data availability. Ecological condition Index Management Reference condition Terrestrial

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This article focus is on the perceived impact that aquaculture industry has on coastal communities in Northern Norway. Here, aquaculture is key industry with natural, social and economic impacts. In natural resource management in general, identifying and monitoring the perceived social impacts can be a useful tool for local planning. In order to ensure the blue growth goals of the Norwegian government and avoid conflict and mistrust in the future, it is important to understand how both the general public and stakeholders perceive the aquaculture industry, how it affects them and its use of space in the coastal zone. Hence, we ask a) how do coastal communities perceive the aquaculture industry and b) is there a legitimacy gap between the blue growth strategies of the Norwegian Government and the public? In order to answer these questions, we lean on theories related to legitimacy and stakeholder's participation. Original data were collected from structured (N = 150) and semi-structured interviews (N = 10) in two coastal communities in Northern Norway (Alstahaug and Brønnøy). Our findings suggest that a legitimacy gap does exist between blue growth goals and fishers in the communities studied, while the general citizen holds a positive attitude towards aquaculture. Insights from this study are useful for local, regional and national decision makers with responsibility for natural resource policies and development efforts.

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Agricultural, forestry‐impacted and natural catchments are all vectors of nutrient loading in the Nordic countries. Here, we present concentrations and fluxes of total nitrogen (totN) and phosphorus (totP) from 69 Nordic headwater catchments (Denmark: 12, Finland:18, Norway:17, Sweden:22) between 2000 and 2018. Catchments span the range of Nordic climatic and environmental conditions and include natural sites and sites impacted by agricultural and forest management. Concentrations and fluxes of totN and totP were highest in agricultural catchments, intermediate in forestry‐impacted and lowest in natural catchments, and were positively related %agricultural land cover and summer temperature. Summer temperature may be a proxy for terrestrial productivity, while %agricultural land cover might be a proxy for catchment nutrient inputs. A regional trend analysis showed significant declines in N concentrations and export across agricultural (−15 μg totN L−1 year−1) and natural (−0.4 μg NO3‐N L−1 year−1) catchments, but individual sites displayed few long‐term trends in concentrations (totN: 22%, totP: 25%) or export (totN: 6%, totP: 9%). Forestry‐impacted sites had a significant decline in totP (−0.1 μg P L−1 year−1). A small but significant increase in totP fluxes (+0.4 kg P km−2 year−1) from agricultural catchments was found, and countries showed contrasting patterns. Trends in annual concentrations and fluxes of totP and totN could not be explained in a straightforward way by changes in runoff or climate. Explanations for the totN decline include national mitigation measures in agriculture international policy to reduced air pollution and, possibly, large‐scale increases in forest growth. Mitigation to reduce phosphorus appears to be more challenging than for nitrogen. If the green shift entails intensification of agricultural and forest production, new challenges for protection of water quality will emerge possible exacerbated by climate change. Further analysis of headwater totN and totP export should include seasonal trends, aquatic nutrient species and a focus on catchment nutrient inputs.

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This study aims to identify some of the critically important factors in the sustainability of microbreweries in peripheral northern areas, focusing on the entrepreneurs’ understanding of sustainability. Theoretically, this study adopts the perspective of service-dominant logic on value. Methodologically, it uses an action-research approach and conducts in-depth interviews with four entrepreneurs. The findings suggest that the entrepreneurs reflect on several relevant issues in line with sustainability thinking. The perception of sustainability, especially environmental sustainability, is one subject that the entrepreneurs perceive and sometimes in conflict with the economic sustainability of their businesses. Constraints recognized include the lack of strategic planning and explicit discussions about sustainability with potential stakeholders. A critically important factor for the sustainability of microbreweries is the need for entrepreneurs to engage in wider discussions about the conceptual and practical aspects of sustainability, especially with government and community bodies.

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The emergence of antibiotic-resistant pathogens has caused a serious worldwide problem in infection treatment in recent years. One of the pathogens is methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), which is a major cause of skin and soft tissue infections. Alternative strategies and novel sources of antimicrobials to solve antibiotic resistance problems are urgently needed. In this study, we explored the potential of two broad-spectrum bacteriocins, garvicin KS and micrococcin P1, in skin infection treatments. The two bacteriocins acted synergistically with each other and with penicillin G in killing MRSA in vitro. The MICs of the antimicrobials in the three-component mixture were 40 ng/ml for micrococcin P1 and 2 μg/ml for garvicin KS and penicillin G, which were 62, 16, and at least 1,250 times lower than their MICs when assessed individually. To assess its therapeutic potential further, we challenged the three-component formulation in a murine skin infection model with the multidrug-resistant luciferase-tagged MRSA Xen31, a strain derived from the clinical isolate S. aureus ATCC 33591. Using the tagged-luciferase activity as a reporter for the presence of Xen31 in wounds, we demonstrated that the three-component formulation was efficient in eradicating the pathogen from treated wounds. Furthermore, compared to Fucidin cream, which is an antibiotic commonly used in skin infection treatments, our formulation was also superior in terms of preventing resistance development.

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A survey of helminths associated with terrestrial slugs focusing on the invasive Arion vulgaris and the native A. ater was conducted on populations from France, Germany, Netherlands, Norway and Poland. In total, 648 terrestrial slugs were collected from 18 sample sites, and identified by means of morphological examination, dissection of genitalia and molecular analysis using mitochondrial DNA. In addition to A. vulgaris and A. ater, also A. vulgaris/A. rufus hybrids and A. ater/A. rufus hybrids were collected. Helminth species were identified based on morphological features and sequencing of the 18S and ITS rDNA regions. The parasites included four nematode species: Alloionema appendiculatum, Angiostoma sp., Phasmarhabditis hermaphrodita, Entomelas sp., two trematode species: Brachylaima mesostoma, Eurytrema sp., and one cestode (tapeworm) species: Skrjabinia sp. Alloionema appendiculatum was the most common helminth in the investigated slug populations. Furthermore, we found higher prevalence of trematodes in the invasive A. vulgaris compared with the native A. ater, while differences in the prevalence for nematodes were not as clear.

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More than 30 years ago, the Nordic Gene Bank established a long-term experiment on seeds stored under permafrost conditions in an abandoned mine corridor in Svalbard, as a tool to monitor storage life under these conditions. The study included seeds from 16 Nordic agricultural and horticultural crops, each represented by two or three cultivars (altogether 38 accessions). All seeds were ultra-dried to 3–5% moisture before being sealed in glass tubes. Germination tests were performed in accordance with the International Seed Testing Association (ISTA) protocols. At the initiation of the experiment, the samples showed good germination with the median value at 92%. The overall picture remained stable over the first twenty to twenty-five years. However, the variation became larger over time and at 30 years, the median value had dropped to 80%. At the lower end, with a high drop in germination, we found rye, wheat, and English ryegrass. At the upper end, we found Kentucky bluegrass and cucumber. The lowest germination was found in samples with the highest initial seed moisture levels. Pre-storage conditions are likely to be of major importance for longevity.

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Aim: The Guineo‐Congolian region in Africa constitutes the second largest area of tropical rainforest (TRF) in the world. It covered an estimated 15–22 million km2 during the late Miocene (55–11 Ma) and it has experienced since a declining trend, currently reaching 3.4 million km2, associated with increasing aridification and the replacement of TRF by savanna habitats. Here, we examine whether rainforest area contraction led to a decrease in net diversification rates linked to increasing extinction, or if it is associated with increasing opportunities for allopatric or ecological speciation during periods of forest fragmentation. Location: Tropical Africa, Guineo‐Congolian region. Taxon: Anthonotha, Englerodendron, Berlinia clade (Leguminosae). Methods: We used a target enrichment approach combined with a complete data set representing all genera within the Berlinia clade. We combined phylogenomic, dating estimates, habitat reconstruction and diversification rate analyses to infer the effect of change in rainforest area coverage at two taxonomic levels: among genera, and within Anthonotha and Englerodendron. Results: We recovered fully resolved and well‐supported relationships among all genera and among species within the two genera. Most genera (87.5%) diverged before the Pleistocene, but Anthonotha and Englerodendron diversified recently, during the most recent cycles of forest contraction and expansion of the Pleistocene. Main conclusions: Our results suggest that the Berlinia clade displays an overall trend of accumulation of species over evolutionary time, suggesting the reduction in TRF area has not decreased net diversification rates. Most habitat shifts to savanna occurred in the Miocene, with no major habitat shifts during the most recent phases of forest expansion–contraction in the Pleistocene. Shifts in habitat from lowland forest to savanna did not trigger diversification rates, but habitat fragmentation might have increased diversification rates through allopatric speciation.

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Emission intensities from beef production vary both among production systems (countries) and farms within a country depending upon use of natural resources and management practices. A whole-farm model developed for Norwegian suckler cow herds, HolosNorBeef, was used to estimate GHG emissions from 27 commercial beef farms in Norway with Angus, Hereford, and Charolais cattle. HolosNorBeef considers direct emissions of methane (CH4), nitrous oxide (N2O) and carbon dioxide (CO2) from on-farm livestock production and indirect N2O and CO2 emissions associated with inputs used on the farm. The corresponding soil carbon (C) emissions are estimated using the Introductory Carbon Balance Model (ICBM). The farms were distributed across Norway with varying climate and natural resource bases. The estimated emission intensities ranged from 22.5 to 45.2 kg CO2 equivalents (eq) (kg carcass)−1. Enteric CH4 was the largest source, accounting for 44% of the total GHG emissions on average, dependent on dry matter intake (DMI). Soil C was the largest source of variation between individual farms and accounted for 6% of the emissions on average. Variation in GHG intensity among farms was reduced and farms within region East, Mid and North re-ranked in terms of emission intensities when soil C was excluded. Ignoring soil C, estimated emission intensities ranged from 21.5 to 34.1 kg CO2 eq (kg carcass)−1. High C loss from farms with high initial soil organic carbon (SOC) content warrants further examination of the C balance of permanent grasslands as a potential mitigation option for beef production systems.

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Organic amendments can improve grassland productivity. Timothy and tall fescue were sown on a sandy loam and a coarse sand at Særheim, Norway, in September 2016 and on a loamy sand at Skierniewice, Poland, in April 2017, and cut and fertilised according to normal practices for the two regions from 2017 to 2019. At both sites, 0.75 kg DM m-2 of either digested or undigested manure (the latter with or without 2.9 kg biochar m-2) were incorporated prior to sowing. On the coarse sand at Særheim, total seasonal tall fescue yield in 2018 was 46–60% higher in the organic amendment treatments, and total seasonal timothy yield in the digestate treatment was 97% higher, than in the control treatment for the same species with only mineral fertiliser. On the sandy loam at Særheim and the loamy sand at Skierniewice, none of the amendments resulted in significant yield increments. These results indicate a clear effect on soil type on grassland biomass response to organic amendments.

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* In forests, ectomycorrhizal mycelium is pivotal for driving soil carbon and nutrient cycles, but how ectomycorrhizal mycelial dynamics vary in ecosystems with drought periods is unknown. We quantified the production and turnover of mycorrhizal mycelium in Mediterranean Pinus pinaster, Pinus sylvestris and Quercus ilex forests and related the estimates to standardised precipitation index (SPI), to study how mycelial dynamics relates to tree species and drought‐moisture conditions. * Production and turnover of mycelium was estimated between July and February, by quantifying the fungal biomass (ergosterol) in ingrowth mesh bags and using statistical modelling. SPI for time scales of 1–3 months was calculated from precipitation records and precipitation data over the study period. * Forests dominated by Pinus trees displayed higher biomass but were seasonally more variable, as opposed to Q. ilex forests where the mycelial biomass remained lower and stable over the season. Production and turnover, respectively, varied between 1.4–5.9 kg ha−1 d−1 and 7.2–9.9 times yr−1 over the different forest types and were positively correlated with 2‐month and 3‐month SPI over the study period. * Our results demonstrated that mycorrhizal mycelial biomass varied with season and tree species and we speculate that production and turnover are related to physiology and plant host performance during drought.

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Semelparous annual plants flower a single time during their 1‐yr life cycle, investing much of their energy into rapid reproduction. By contrast, iteroparous perennial plants flower multiple times over several years, and partition their resources between reproduction and persistence. To which extent evolutionary transitions between life‐cycle strategies are internally constrained at the developmental, genetic and phylogenetic level is unknown. Here we study the evolution of life‐cycle strategies in the grass subfamily Pooideae and test if transitions between them are facilitated by evolutionary precursors. We integrate ecological, life‐cycle strategy and growth data in a phylogenetic framework. We investigate if growth traits are candidates for a precursor. Species in certain Pooideae clades are predisposed to evolve annuality from perenniality, potentially due to the shared inheritance of specific evolutionary precursors. Seasonal dry climates, which have been linked to annuality, were only able to select for transitions to annuality when the precursor was present. Allocation of more resources to above‐ground rather than below‐ground growth is a candidate for the precursor. Our findings support the hypothesis that only certain lineages can respond quickly to changing external conditions by switching their life‐cycle strategy, likely due to the presence of evolutionary precursors.

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1. Ecological network theory hypothesizes that the structuring of species interactions can convey stability to the system. Investigating how these structures react to species loss is fundamental for understanding network disassembly or their robustness. However, this topic has mainly been studied in‐silico so far. 2. Here, in an experimental manipulation, we sequentially removed four generalist plants from real plant–pollinator networks. We explored the effects on, and drivers of, species and interaction disappearance, network structure and interaction rewiring. First, we compared both the local extinctions of species and interactions and the observed network indices with those expected from three co‐extinction models. Second, we investigated the trends in network indices and rewiring rate after plant removal and the pollinator tendency at establishing novel links in relation to their proportional visitation to the removed plants. Furthermore, we explored the underlying drivers of network assembly with probability matrices based on ecological traits. 3. Our results indicate that the cumulative local extinctions of species and interactions increased faster with generalist plant loss than what was expected by co‐extinction models, which predicted the survival or disappearance of many species incorrectly, and the observed network indices were lowly correlated to those predicted by co‐extinction models. Furthermore, the real networks reacted in complex ways to plant removal. First, network nestedness decreased and modularity increased. Second, although species abundance was a main assembly rule, opportunistic random interactions and structural unpredictability emerged as plants were removed. Both these reactions could indicate network instability and fragility. Other results showed network reorganization, as rewiring rate was high and asymmetries between network levels emerged as plants increased their centrality. Moreover, the generalist pollinators that had frequently visited both the plants targeted of removal and the non‐target plants tended to establish novel links more than who either had only visited the removal plants or avoided to do so. 4. With the experimental manipulation of real networks, our study shows that despite their reorganizational ability, plant–pollinator networks changed towards a more fragile state when generalist plants are lost.

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To improve risk assessment, control and treatment strategies of contaminated sites, we require accurate methods for monitoring solute transport and infiltration in the unsaturated zone. Highly spatio‐temporal heterogeneous infiltration during snowmelt increases the risk of contaminating the groundwater in areas where de‐icing chemicals are required for winter maintenance of roads and runways. The objective of this study is to quantify how the different processes occurring during snowmelt infiltration of contaminated meltwater affect bulk electrical resistivity. Field experiments conducted at Moreppen experimental lysimeter trench are combined with heterogeneous unsaturated soil modelling. The experimental site is located next to Oslo airport, Gardermoen, Norway, where large amounts of de‐icing chemicals are used to remove snow and ice every winter. Bromide, an inactive tracer, and the de‐icing chemical propylene glycol were applied to the snow cover prior to the onset of snowmelt, and their percolation through the unsaturated zone was monitored with water sampling from 37 suction cups. At the same time, cross‐borehole time‐lapse electrical resistivity measurements were recorded along with measurements of soil water tension and temperature. Images of two‐dimensional (2D) bulk resistivity profiles were determined and were temperature corrected, to compensate for the change in soil temperature throughout the melting period. By using fitted parameters of petrophysical relations for the Moreppen soil, the tensiometer data gave insight into the contribution of water saturation on the changes in bulk resistivity, while water samples provided the contribution to the bulk resistivity from salt concentrations. The experimental data were compared with numerical simulation of the same experimental conditions in a heterogeneous unsaturated soil and used to quantify the uncertainty caused by the non‐consistent resolutions of the different methods, and to increase our understanding of the resistivity signal measured with time‐lapse electrical resistivity tomography. The work clearly illustrates the importance of ground truthing in multiple locations to obtain an accurate description of the contaminant transport.

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As the periodic emission of light pulses by light emitting diodes (LEDs) is known to stimulate growth or induce high value biocompounds in microalgae, this flashing light regime was tested on growth and biochemical composition of the microalgae Nannochloropsis gaditana, Koliella antarctica and Tetraselmis chui. At low flashing light frequencies (e.g., 5 and 50 Hz, Duty cycle = 0.05), a strain-dependent growth inhibition and an accumulation of protein, polyunsaturated fatty acids, chlorophyll or carotenoids (lutein, β-carotene, violaxanthin and neoxanthin) was observed. In addition, a 4-day application of low-frequency flashing light to concentrated cultures increased productivities of eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and specific carotenoids up to three-fold compared to continuous or high frequency flashing light (500 Hz, Duty cycle = 0.05). Therefore, applying low-frequency flashing light as finishing step in industrial production can increase protein, polyunsaturated fatty acids or pigment contents in biomass, leading to high-value algal products.

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Many Norwegian consumers eat more red meat than is recommended by the Government. Of the protein currently consumed, 75% is of animal origin. Natural conditions in Norway favour the production of meat, dairy and seafood but high-protein plants can also be grown in the country. This study analysed the environmental impact of growing turnip rapeseed (Brassica rapa) and rapeseed (Brassica napus) and the processing of rapeseed into dietary oil and press cake. The results were then compared with some common animal protein food sources. Impacts were calculated for 24 impact indicators. The climate impact of dried seeds was 1.19 kg CO2-eq/kg, for rape oil—3.0 kg CO2-eq/kg and for rapeseed press cake—0.72 kg CO2-eq/kg. The environmental impact of rapeseed production is higher than in most other countries, predominantly due to lower yields. Press cake from rapeseed could be a valuable source of protein in foods. In Norway, the environmental impacts of this material (climate impact—2.5 kg CO2-eq/kg protein) are at the same level as other plant protein sources, but far lower than some of the most common animal protein sources (climate impact—16–35 kg CO2-eq/kg protein). When comparing the impacts while taking nutrient content into account, these differences remained the same. Improvements in the environmental performance of oilseed and its products can be achieved both by improving yields through better agronomic practices and increasing the proportion of winter rapeseed.

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The European Boreal Forest Vegetation Database (EBFVD, GIVD ID: EU-00-027) is a repository for vegetation-plot data from the forests of the boreal and hemiboreal zones of Europe. In this report, we describe its structure, current content and future perspectives opened up by the database. In February 2019, the database contained 13 037 vegetation-plot records from Belarus, Estonia, Finland, Latvia, Norway, Russia and Sweden that are not yet stored in the databases of the European Vegetation Archive (EVA). Consequently, this database significantly improves the availability of forest plant community data from Northern Europe. The database is managed by the Vegetation Science Group, Department of Botany and Zoology, Masaryk University, Brno (Czech Republic), in the TURBOVEG 2 program. It is registered in the Global Index of Vegetation Plot Databases (GIVD) and included in EVA. The whole database, or a subset of it, can be requested via EVA, or directly from the database custodian.

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This paper analyses two strategies to reduce the use of pesticides in grain production. We study Norwegian farmers’ willingness to voluntarily forego income by reducing pesticide use as well as their responses to a doubling of the pesticide price (through increased pesticide taxes). We use mixed methods including an experiment, a survey and focus group discussions. The experiment shows that most farmers are willing to sacrifice some income to reduce environmental risks by using less pesticide. According to the survey, they are, at the same time, relatively insensitive to a 100% price increase on herbicides and fungicides. While the response to the price increase probably would have been stronger if differentiated between chemicals, our research indicates potential benefits from supporting voluntary action. Value orientations and agronomic conditions influence the stated responses in both circumstances. Respondents emphasizing environmental values are more willing to voluntarily reduce pesticide use and show a greater response to the economic incentive than farmers emphasizing economic outcome and issues such as clean fields. A hypothesized willingness to reduce pesticide use voluntarily to strengthen the reputation of the sector was, however, rejected. Farmers appear to have few alternatives to pesticides, but increased knowledge about the alternatives that do exist, seems able to promote some change. Our findings suggest that the extension service should put greater emphasis on these options, even if they may have negative effects on income.

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Blueberries are distinguished by their purple-blue fruit color, which develops during ripening and is derived from a characteristic composition of flavonoid-derived anthocyanin pigments. The production of anthocyanins is confined to fruit skin, leaving the colorless fruit flesh devoid of these compounds. By linking accumulation patterns of phenolic metabolites with gene transcription in Northern Highbush (Vaccinium corymbosum) and Rabbiteye (Vaccinium virgatum) blueberry, we investigated factors limiting anthocyanin production in berry flesh. We find that flavonoid production was generally lower in fruit flesh compared with skin and concentrations further declined during maturation. A common set of structural genes was identified across both species, indicating that tissue-specific flavonoid biosynthesis was dependent on co-expression of multiple pathway genes and limited by the phenylpropanoid pathway in combination with CHS, F3H, and ANS as potential pathway bottlenecks. While metabolite concentrations were comparable between the blueberry genotypes when fully ripe, the anthocyanin composition was distinct and depended on the degree of hydroxylation/methoxylation of the anthocyanidin moiety in combination with genotype-specific glycosylation patterns. Co-correlation analysis of phenolic metabolites with pathway structural genes revealed characteristic isoforms of O-methyltransferases and UDP-glucose:flavonoid-3-O-glycosyltransferase that were likely to modulate anthocyanin composition. Finally, we identified candidate transcriptional regulators that were co-expressed with structural genes, including the activators MYBA, MYBPA1, and bHLH2 together with the repressor MYBC2, which suggested an interdependent role in anthocyanin regulation.

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Sweet potato (Ipomoea batatas L. Lam) has become one of the staple crops in Africa in the last 20 years. In Ethiopia, sweet potato is the second most widely grown root crop and is the first regarding the production per hectare. Thus, there is a great demand of planting material throughout the country. Currently, planting material is usually obtained from own previous season harvest, local markets or from the neighboring fields since no certified clean planting material production scheme has been established in Ethiopia yet. Unfortunately, this practice has contributed to the spread of viral diseases throughout the country. Elimination of viruses from infected plants is a tedious job, which requires efficient methods to eliminate the virus and also to verify that the plants are indeed virus-free. In the case of sweet potato, it was observed that heat treatment, combined with meristem tip culture is an efficient method for virus elimination. Previous findings indicate that reverse transcription (RT) PCR is more efficient than ELISA to verify the efficiency of virus elimination. In this study, the use of next generation sequencing (NGS) was explored as a verification method and compared with RT-PCR. The results show that NGS seems to be more efficient than RT-PCR, although also prone to inconclusive results.

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Red-listed species are often used as target species in selection of sites for conservation. However, limitations to their use have been pointed out, and here we address the problem of expected high spatio-temporal dynamics of red-listed species. We used species data (vascular plants, bryophytes, macrolichens and polypore fungi) from two inventories 17 years apart to estimate temporal turnover of red-listed and non-red-listed species in two forest areas (147 and 195 ha) and of plots (0.25 ha) within each area. Furthermore, we investigated how turnover of species afected the rank order of plots regarding richness of red-listed species, using two diferent national Red List issues (1998 and 2015). In both study areas, temporal turnover was substantial, despite minor changes in the overall number of species. At plot level, temporal turnover in red-listed species was higher than in non-red-listed species, but similar to non-red-listed species of the same frequency of occurrence. Adding the efect of changing identities of species red-listed according to the two Red List issues, further increased the estimated spatio-temporal dynamics. Recorded spatio-temporal turnover also resulted in substantial changes in the rank order of plots regarding richness of red-listed species. Using rare red-listed species for site selection may therefore be accompanied by a higher loss of conservation efectiveness over time than for more common species, and particularly at fner scales. Red-listed species · Site selection · Spatio-temporal dynamics · Temporal turnover

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Sweet potato (Ipomoea batatas (L.) Lam.) is an important root crop for poor farmers in developing countries. Since the late 1980s, viral diseases have increasingly become a threat to sweet potato production in Ethiopia. This review paper presents the role of sweet potato production for ensuring food security, the level of sweet potato virus research, including the types of viral species identified and their current level of incidences in Ethiopia. Sweet potato feathery mottle virus (SPFMV), Sweet potato chlorotic stunt virus (SPCSV), Sweet potato virus 2 (SPV2), Sweet potato virus G (SPVG), and Cucumber mosaic virus (CMV) were reported in Ethiopia, where the first two are the most common and exist at high incidences. In addition, this paper discusses the virus vectors, virus transmission methods to new farms, factors exacerbating the rate of viral incidence and the methods used to reduce the incidences. Moreover, it highlights methods of sweet potato viruses’ detection and cleaning of infected materials in use and the challenges encountered towards the efficient utilization of the methods. Finally, we suggest major intervention techniques that will integrate all key players in managing the impact of the virus on sweet potato production to improve productivity and ensuring food security in Ethiopia. The findings obtained from this review could be an input for the current research on sweet potato improvement (both planting materials and routines) in Ethiopia.

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Background Sphingolipids are structural components and signaling molecules in eukaryotic membranes, and many organisms produce compounds that inhibit sphingolipid metabolism. Some of the inhibitors are structurally similar to the sphingolipid biosynthetic intermediate sphinganine and are referred to as sphinganine-analog metabolites (SAMs). The mycotoxins fumonisins, which are frequent contaminants in maize, are one family of SAMs. Due to food and feed safety concerns, fumonisin biosynthesis has been investigated extensively, including characterization of the fumonisin biosynthetic gene cluster in the agriculturally important fungi Aspergillus and Fusarium. Production of several other SAMs has also been reported in fungi, but there is almost no information on their biosynthesis. There is also little information on how widely SAM production occurs in fungi or on the extent of structural variation of fungal SAMs. Results Using fumonisin biosynthesis as a model, we predicted that SAM biosynthetic gene clusters in fungi should include a polyketide synthase (PKS), an aminotransferase and a dehydrogenase gene. Surveys of genome sequences identified five putative clusters with this three-gene combination in 92 of 186 Fusarium species examined. Collectively, the putative SAM clusters were distributed widely but discontinuously among the species. We propose that the SAM5 cluster confers production of a previously reported Fusarium SAM, 2-amino-14,16-dimethyloctadecan-3-ol (AOD), based on the occurrence of AOD production only in species with the cluster and on deletion analysis of the SAM5 cluster PKS gene. We also identified SAM clusters in 24 species of other fungal genera, and propose that one of the clusters confers production of sphingofungin, a previously reported Aspergillus SAM. Conclusion Our results provide a genomics approach to identify novel SAM biosynthetic gene clusters in fungi, which should in turn contribute to identification of novel SAMs with applications in medicine and other fields. Information about novel SAMs could also provide insights into the role of SAMs in the ecology of fungi. Such insights have potential to contribute to strategies to reduce fumonisin contamination in crops and to control crop diseases caused by SAM-producing fungi.

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Powdery mildew (Podosphaera aphanis) is a destructive and widespread disease of strawberry (Fragaria × ananassa), especially when susceptible cultivars are grown in high plastic tunnels or glasshouses. Many powdery mildews thrive in humid environments but free water films on plant surfaces can inhibit conidial germination of some species. We hypothesized that P. aphanis might be directly suppressed by rain through the action of water films and meteoric water. In repeated experiments, the hydrophobic conidia of P. aphanis collected on the surface of water droplets, resulting in their removal when the droplets rolled over the leaf surfaces and fell to the ground. Meteoric water and water films also damaged conidiophores. Brief midday water mists applied in pulses lasting 1 min each four times per day were as effective as multiple fungicide treatments in suppressing powdery mildew. Rapid drying of the pulsed mists resulted in effective suppression of powdery mildew without consequent increases of fungal pathogens that might benefit from water films. The timing and duration of water sprinkling has been refined to the point where it can provide a commercially relevant degree of suppression of powdery mildew on strawberry in a high-tunnel production system.

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The necrotrophic fungal pathogen Parastagonospora nodorum causes Septoria nodorum blotch (SNB), which is one of the dominating leaf blotch diseases of wheat in Norway. A total of 165 P. nodorum isolates were collected from three wheat growing regions in Norway from 2015 to 2017. These isolates, as well as nine isolates from other countries, were analyzed for genetic variation using 20 simple sequence repeat (SSR) markers. Genetic analysis of the isolate collection indicated that the P. nodorum pathogen population infecting Norwegian spring and winter wheat underwent regular sexual reproduction and exhibited a high level of genetic diversity, with no genetic subdivisions between sampled locations, years or host cultivars. A high frequency of the presence of necrotrophic effector (NE) gene SnToxA was found in Norwegian P. nodorum isolates compared to other parts of Europe, and we hypothesize that the SnToxA gene is the major virulence factor among the three known P. nodorum NE genes (SnToxA, SnTox1, and SnTox3) in the Norwegian pathogen population. While the importance of SNB has declined in much of Europe, Norway has remained as a P. nodorum hotspot, likely due at least in part to local adaptation of the pathogen population to ToxA sensitive Norwegian spring wheat cultivars.

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Wheat disease management in Europe is mainly based on the use of fungicides and the cultivation of resistant cultivars. Improving disease management implies the formal comparison of disease management methods in terms of both crop health and yield levels (attainable yield, actual yield), thus enabling an assessment of yield losses and yield gains. Such an assessment is not available for wheat in Europe. The objective of the analysis reported here is to provide an overview of wheat health and yield performance in field experiments in Europe. Data from field experiments in six European countries (Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Norway, and Sweden) conducted between 2013 and 2017 were analysed to that aim. Relationships between multiple disease levels, yield, level of cultivar resistance, level of fungicide protection, and weather patterns were assessed. The analyses included 73 field experiments, corresponding to a total of 447 [fungicide protection level x cultivar] combinations. Analyses across the six countries led to ranking the importance of foliar wheat diseases as follows, in decreasing order: leaf blotch (septoria tritici blotch, septoria nodorum blotch, and tan spot), leaf rust, yellow rust, and powdery mildew. Fusarium head blight was observed in France and Italy, and stem rust was sporadically observed in Italy. Disease patterns, crop inputs (fertiliser, fungicides), and yields widely varied within and across countries. Disease levels were affected by the level of fungicide use, by cultivar resistance, as well as by weather patterns. While this analysis enables a better documentation of the status of wheat health in Europe, it also highlights the critical need for policies in Europe enabling a more judicious use of pesticides. First, common standards for field experiments are needed (experimental designs and protocols; disease assessment procedures and scales; references, including reference-susceptible cultivars); second, assessments in farmers’ fields – and not in research stations – are necessary; and third, there is a need to use available process-based crop models to estimate attainable yields, and so, yield losses.

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Phosphorus is an essential plant nutrient, but primary resources are limited and overfertilization may cause eutrophication of freshwater. Our objectives were to examine temperature effects on (a) optimal P rate for turfgrass establishment, and (b) increasing rates of foliar vs. granular P for early spring growth of established greens. Two trials, both on USGA root zones and replicated in April−May over 2 yr, were conducted in daylight phytotrons at 7, 12 and 17 °C. Experiment 1 compared 5 P rates from 0 to 0.48 g P m−2 wk−1 for creeping bentgrass establishment on a sand containing 13 mg P kg−1 (Mehlich‐3). Results showed no temperature effect on the optimal P rate. Bentgrass coverage and clipping yield increased up to 0.12 and 0.24 g P m−2 wk−1, corresponding to 6 and 12% of the N input, respectively. The concentration of P in clippings was higher at 7 than at 17 °C indicating that temperature was more limiting to shoot growth than to P uptake. A higher root/top ratio showed that plants invested more in roots under P deficiency. Experiment 2 was conducted using intact cores from a 4‐yr‐old creeping bentgrass (Agrostis stolonifera L.) green with a Mehlich‐3 P level of 34 mg P kg−1. Results showed increased clipping yields up to 0.18 g P m−2 wk−1 and higher P uptake with granular than with foliar application, but there was no effect on turfgrass color and no interaction with temperature. Low temperatures did not justify higher P applications.

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Transnational cooperation is a common strategy for addressing research and development (R&D) issues resulting from similar challenges that cut across administrative borders. Value chains for food and drinks are complex, and transdisciplinary work is recognised as a method for solving complex issues. The Northern Cereals project ran from 2015 to 2018, and its goal was to increase cereal production and the value of grain products in four regions in the Northern Periphery programme area. The project included both R&D, but the main emphasis was on development, and was carried out by transdisciplinary cooperation between R&D partners and small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). By reviewing the project’s methods, outcomes and composition, we discuss if a framework of transnational and transdisciplinary cooperation can help to develop the value chain from local barley to beer. We found that transnational cooperation was achieved successfully, that stakeholder involvement was crucial, but that academic disciplines such as marketing and innovation could have been included. In addition, we recognised that much work remains to further increase cereal production and the use of local grain in the Northern Periphery region, but believe that this project has laid a good foundation for further progress.

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Efficiency in agricultural food production has long been in focus and this has affected the spatial structure of agricultural land use. One outcome has been extensive criticism based on a wide range of negative consequences, such as for biodiversity, accessibility, cultural heritage, and aesthetics. In line with the European Landscape Convention (ELC), management of people’s everyday landscapes is important. In Norway, agricultural landscapes are the ‘everyday landscape’ for a large proportion of the population. The aim of the article is to contribute to the understanding of landscape changes perceived as positive or negative by the inhabitants. The authors focused on grain-crop dominated landscapes and the impact of smaller non-crop elements on people’s landscape preferences. They administered a photo-based questionnaire using manipulated photos to assess preferences for different agricultural landscapes. Additionally, people’s perceived objectives for the agricultural sector and agriculture’s primary functions were assessed. The results documented positive perceptions of added landscape elements and that people were both aware of and agreed on the multifunctional role of agriculture. The authors conclude that if the public’s preferences are to be taken into consideration, such as during policymaking, it is important to maintain various landscape elements in the large-scale grain field landscapes of Norway.

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The objective of this paper is to examine the economic performance of crop-producing farms accounting for unobserved heterogeneity,environmental variables, and regions. The empirical analysis was based on a translog cost function and unbalanced farm-level panel data for 1991–2013 from the 455 crop-producing farms with 3,885 observations (1,004observations from the central region and 2,881 observations from the eastern region). We found that the mean minimum costs were about 93% and 92% of the actual costs for crop farms in the central and eastern regions, respectively.The marginal effects of crop rotation, land tenure, off-farm activity, direct government support, and experience were positively associated with crop farm economic performance. The marginal contribution of these variables on economic performance increased in the years 2000–2013 compared with the years 1991–1999 in both regions.

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Strawberries are rich in polyphenols which impart health benefits when metabolized by the gut microbiome, including anti-inflammatory, neuroprotective, and antiproliferative effects. In addition, polyphenolic anthocyanins contribute to the attractive color of strawberry fruits. However, the genetic basis of polyphenol biosynthesis has not been extensively studied in strawberry. In this investigation, ripe fruits from three cultivated strawberry populations were characterized for polyphenol content using HPLC-DAD-MSn and genotyped using the iStraw35k array. GWAS and QTL analyses identified genetic loci controlling polyphenol biosynthesis. QTL were identified on four chromosomes for pelargonidin-3-O-malonylglucoside, pelargonidin-3-O-acetylglucoside, cinnamoyl glucose, and ellagic acid deoxyhexoside biosynthesis. Presence/absence of ellagic acid deoxyhexoside and pelargonidin-3-O-malonylglucoside was found to be under the control of major gene loci on LG1X2 and LG6b, respectively, on the F. × ananassa linkage maps. Interrogation of gene predictions in the F. vesca reference genome sequence identified a single candidate gene for ellagic acid deoxyhexoside biosynthesis, while seven malonyltransferase genes were identified as candidates for pelargonidin-3-O-malonylglucoside biosynthesis. Homologous malonyltransferase genes were identified in the F. × ananassa ‘Camarosa’ genome sequence but the candidate for ellagic acid deoxyhexoside biosynthesis was absent from the ‘Camarosa’ sequence. This study demonstrated that polyphenol biosynthesis in strawberry is, in some cases,under simple genetic control, supporting previous observations of the presence or absence of these compounds in strawberry fruits. It has also shed light on the mechanisms controlling polyphenol biosynthesis and enhanced the knowledge of these biosynthesis pathways in strawberry. The above findings will facilitate breeding for strawberries enriched in compounds with beneficial health effects.

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Several important vegetable crops grown outdoors in temperate climates in Europe can be damaged by the root-feeding larvae of Diptera (Delia radicum, Delia floralis, Chamaepsila rosae, Delia platura, Delia florilega, Delia antiqua). Knowledge of pest insect phenology is a key component of any Integrated Pest Management (IPM) strategy, and this review considers the methods used to monitor and forecast the occurrence of root-feeding flies as a basis for decision-making by growers and the ways that such information can be applied. It has highlighted some current management approaches where such information is very useful for decision support, for example, the management of C. rosae with insecticidal sprays and the management of all of these pests using crop covers. There are other approaches, particularly those that need to be applied at sowing or transplanting, where knowledge of pest phenology and abundance is less necessary. Going forward, it is likely that the number of insecticidal control options available to European vegetable growers will diminish and they will need to move from a strategy which often involves using a single ‘silver bullet’ to a combination of approaches/tools with partial effects (applied within an IPM framework). For the less-effective, combined methods, accurate information about pest phenology and abundance and reliable decision support are likely to be extremely important.

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A major cost component in livestock production is feed, which suggests improved feed efficiency as a promising strategy to improve both competitiveness and environmental sustainability. This study has investigated the technical and economic efficiency of using two alternatives to the standard feeds in livestock production in Norway. Data was generated from two controlled feeding experiments involving dairy cows and finishing pigs. In the dairy cow experiment, grass silage optimal in protein content was compared to silage lower in protein content in rations to moderately yielding cows. In the pig experiment, imported soybean meal was compared to rapeseed meal in diets to finishing pigs. From Data Envelopment Analysis, we did not find significant within group as well as between group differences in technical efficiency of animals under different feeding strategies. Under the assumptions of the study, however, a feeding regime based on low protein silage was found to be cheaper (–9% to –10%) for moderately yielding dairy cows, suggesting that Norwegian milk production could be based on the low protein silage fed ad libitum. On the other hand, despite reducing feed costs, a feeding regime based on rapeseed meal was less profitable, although statistically insignificant, than soybean meal for finishing pig production. Therefore, the nutritional value must improve and/or the price of rapeseed meal drop before it becomes an economically acceptable replacement to soybean meal.

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Bark beetles belonging to the genus Dryocoetes (Coleoptera, Curculionidae, Scolytinae) are known vectors of fungi, such as the pathogenic species Grosmannia dryocoetidis involved in alpine fir (Abies lasiocarpa) mortality. Associations between hardwood-infesting Dryocoetes species and fungi in Europe have received very little research attention. Ectosymbiotic fungi residing in Ceratocystiopsis and Leptographium (Ophiostomatales, Sordariomycetes, Ascomycota) were commonly detected in previous surveys of the Dryocoetes alni-associated mycobiome in Poland. The aim of this study was to accurately identify these isolates and to provide descriptions of the new species. The identification was conducted based on morphology and DNA sequence data for six loci (ITS1-5.8S, ITS2-28S, ACT, CAL, TUB2, and TEF1-α). This revealed two new species, described here as Ceratocystiopsis synnemata sp. nov. and Leptographium alneum sp. nov. The host trees for the new species included Alnus incana and Populus tremula. Ceratocystiopsis synnemata can be distinguished from its closely related species, C. pallidobrunnea, based on conidia morphology and conidiophores that aggregate in loosely arranged synnemata. Leptographium alneum is closely related to Grosmannia crassivaginata and differs from this species in having a larger ascomatal neck, and the presence of larger club-shaped cells.

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Rapeseed oils are a valuable component of the diet. Mostly, there are refined oils deprived of valuable nutrients in the market, hence in recent times cold-pressed and unrefined oils have been available and popular among consumers. However, the low yield of this oil makes this product expensive. The aim of the study was to analyse the effectiveness of phosphorus reduction in crude oils, cold- and hot-pressed in the low-temperature bleaching process. Eight market-available bleaching earths was compared. The effectiveness of 90% was found with 2% (m/m) of Kerolite with hydrated magnesium silicate. An increase in the share of earths to 4% (m/m) resulted in the effectiveness of phosphorus reduction >90% in seven out of eight analysed cases. Bentonite activated with acid with the lowest MgO content was characterised by low efficiency <64%. The research shows that the effectiveness of phosphorus reduction was significantly affected by the composition of earths applied in the bleaching process at ambient temperature. The results of research confirm the high effectiveness of the process as it is not necessary to heat up the oil before the bleaching process. This method is recommended for existing and new industrial plant for two-stage rapeseed oil pressing.

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Phytonematodes are globally important functional components of the belowground ecology in both natural and agricultural soils; they are a diverse group of which some species are economically important pests, and environmentally benign control strategies are being sought to control them. Using eco-evolutionary theory, we test the hypothesis that root-exudates of host plants will increase the ability of a hyperparasitic bacteria, Pasteuria penetrans and other closely related bacteria, to infect their homologous pest nematodes, whereas non-host root exudates will not. Plant root-exudates from good hosts, poor hosts and non-hosts were characterized by gas chromatographymass spectrometry (GC/MS) and we explore their interaction on the attachment of the hyperparasitic bacterial endospores to homologous and heterologous pest nematode cuticles. Although GC/MS did not identify any individual compounds as responsible for changes in cuticle susceptibility to endospore adhesion, standardized spore binding assays showed that Pasteuria endospore adhesion decreased with nematode age, and that infective juveniles pre-treated with homologous host root-exudates reduced the aging process and increased attachment of endospores to the nematode cuticle, whereas non-host root-exudates did not. We develop a working model in which plant root exudates manipulate the nematode cuticle aging process, and thereby, through increased bacterial endospore attachment, increase bacterial infection of pest nematodes. This we suggest would lead to a reduction of plant-parasitic nematode burden on the roots and increases plant fitness. Therefore, by the judicious manipulation of environmental factors produced by the plant root and by careful crop rotation this knowledge can help in the development of environmentally benign control strategies.

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In the Pacific Northwest, forest roads have the potential to cause significant environmental degradation, especially to water resources due to increased sediment production. The goal of this research is to improve the understanding of road degradation during hauling by improving our understanding of the aggregate degradation process. We correlate the wear rates to standard material property tests that may allow for improved prediction of the impacts from forest roads based on the selection of aggregate surfacing. Finally, we determine the changes in stress distribution between the subgrade and aggregate interface. High-, medium-, and low-quality aggregates were used from three quarries in western Oregon for this project. These aggregates are indicative of the range of materials used on forest roads in the region. Two material property tests, namely the Los Angeles (LA) abrasion and micro-Deval tests, were used to determine their ability to predict aggregate performance during hauling by relating values for aggregate wear to these aggregate properties. Eighteen nonwoven geotextile bags were created, measuring 60 cm (two-feet long) and 20 cm (eight inches) in diameter, with a pore size equivalent to a 0.149 mm (# 100) sieve. They were filled with a known quantity and particle size distribution of aggregate and embedded into a newly constructed forest road. Stress gages were installed in the road surface between the aggregate and subgrade levels to record the changes in stress at the subgrade level. Samples were subjected to three levels of traffic (500, 950, and 1500 passes) using a loaded dump-truck that had a steering axle and one tandem drive axle, weighing 25,038 kg or 55,200 lb. The results showed that less breakage occurred with the medium- and high-quality aggregates than the low-quality aggregate. There was a correlation between the material property test (either the micro-Deval or the LA abrasion test) and the fine index, indicating the predictability of these tests in terms of aggregate performance. Finally, the higher quality aggregate was able to better distribute the stresses from the wheel better than the lower quality aggregate and was able to reduce the stress reaching the subgrade. Although the results are limited to the three types of rock used in this study, they indicate the ability of the high-quality aggregate to lessen the environmental impacts from forest roads.

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The extraction of Rhodiola rosea rhizomes using natural deep eutectic solvent (NADES) consisting of lactic acid, glucose, fructose, and water was investigated. A two-level Plackett–Burman design with five variables, followed by the steepest ascent method, was undertaken to determine the optimal extraction conditions. Among the five parameters tested, particle size, extraction modulus, and water content were found to have the highest impact on the extrability of phenyletanes and phenylpropanoids. The concentration of active compounds was analyzed by HPLC. The predicted results showed that the extraction yield of the total phenyletanes and phenylpropanoids (25.62 mg/g) could be obtained under the following conditions: extraction time of 154 min, extraction temperature of 22 °C, extraction modulus of 40, molar water content of 5:1:11 (L-lactic acid:fructose:water, mol/mol), and a particle size of rhizomes of 0.5–1 mm. These predicted values were further verified by validation experiments in predicted conditions. The experimental yields of salidroside, tyrosol, rosavin, rosin, cinnamyl alcohol and total markers (sum of phenyletanes and phenylpropanoids in mg/g) were 11.90 ± 0.02, 0.36 ± 0.02, 12.23 ± 0.21, 1.41 ± 0.01, 0.20 ± 0.01, and 26.10 ± 0.27 mg/g, respectively, which corresponded well with the predicted values from the models.

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The Norwegian coastal goat is a national and endangered breed. Coastal goat populations are mainly divided with a large mainland and two small island populations. The objective of this study is to describe genetic diversity in the feral Skorpa island population and its relationship to the mainland coastal goat population (Selje) using the Norwegian milk goat population as a reference. Analyses were based on 96 samples genotyped by the CaprineSNP50 Beadchip from three populations; 7 Skorpa (SK), 37 Selje (SE) and 52 Norwegian milk goats (MG). The SK population had significantly less genetic variation and higher levels of inbreeding than the two other populations. It was more distant from the two mainland populations than they were from each other. The marginal contribution of the SK population to genetic diversity was small. Means of introducing genetic diversity into the SK population should be considered if the population is prioritized for conservation.

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The aim of this study was to evaluate genetic diversity within and between lines at the Norwegian live poultry gene bank as well as assessing the conservation value in an international context. Eight lines including the national breed, Jærhøns, were genotyped with the 600K Affymetrix® Axiom® Chicken Genotyping Array. The white egg layers were generally more inbred than the brown layers. Comparative analyses were carried out with 72 international populations of different origins. The lines that were last bred for commercial production in Norway, Norbrid, are clearly separated from the rest of the international set and more closely related to the current commercial lines. The brown egg layer Norbrid 7 has the highest relative contribution to genetic diversity. The Norwegian genebank lines are of conservation value in a national and international perspective, as they all add genetic diversity to the global set.

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Prunus padus L. (bird cherry) belongs to the Racemosa group in subgenus Padus in the genus Prunus L. It is a hardy invasive species, which makes it valuable for securing slopes, and for eco-design. It is a good solitary park tree with early flowering of white flowers in racemes, which have a pleasant smell. However, it may be attacked by cherry-oat aphid, and the small ermine moth, which may weave giant webs over the whole tree, which demonstrates the important role of P. padus in the food web of forest ecosystems. The species is in balance with these pests, other herbivores and diseases throughout Europe and Asia. Another threat is the competition against the invasive P. serotina, but it seems that P. padus is not strongly threatened, though they compete for the same habitats. Moreover, human interference of forest community ecology is probably the greatest threat. The tree is not only winter hardy; it can also survive hot summers and tolerate a wide variety of soil types. It may form dense thickets due to the regeneration of branches bent to the ground and basal shoots, and may be invasive. These characteristics are important in determining the ecological niche of P. padus, which involves the position of the species within an ecosystem, comprising both its habitat requirements and the functional role. It is also important that P. padus has effective dispersal of pollen and seeds. This, together with the previously noted characteristics and the fact that the tree can cope well with climate change, define it as a not threatened species. However, the ssp. borealis is threatened and national level monitoring is required. Prunus padus has been exploited by farmers and rural population, but is less used today. However, it is still used for making syrup, jam and liquor. Moreover, the wood is valuable for wood carving and making cabinets. All tissues are valuable as sources of powerful natural antioxidants. However, the interest in the P. padus fruit and other tissues is overshadowed by the interest in other wild species of edible and human health-related berries. Moreover, the tree is used in horticulture as an ornamental in gardens and parks, values that deserve a new focus.

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We review a recently discovered white spruce (Picea glauca) chemical defense against spruce budworm (Choristoneura fumiferana) involving hydroxyacetophenones. These defense metabolites detected in the foliage accumulate variably as the aglycons, piceol and pungenol, or the corresponding glucosides, picein and pungenin. We summarize current knowledge of the genetic, genomic, molecular, and biochemical underpinnings of this defense and its effects on C. fumiferana. We present an update with new results on the ontogenic variation and the phenological window of this defense, including analysis of transcript responses in P. glauca to C. fumiferana herbivory. We also discuss this chemical defense from an evolutionary and a breeding context.

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Studying summer farming and farm dairies in Sweden and Norway—the shared empirical basis of this essay—using methods that require a close proximity between the researcher and the researched working closely together can be a challenge. This is especially obvious when the studied community is subjected to frequent studies conducted by scholars and authorities. It became even more complicated as the researchers had different roles in the three projects discussed in this text. In Project One, researchers developed knowledge together with summer farmers, in Project Two the research group interacted with the summer farmers while implementing the UN Convention on Biological Diversity on behalf of the Swedish government and in Project Three researchers addressed summer farmers as respondents. It is our experience that research in which interaction with respondents is close often becomes a target of criticism from other scholars who claim that this type of research is incapable of producing valid and impartial knowledge due to suspected bias. In this article we discuss five types of ethical challenges met in the three projects, two of which are based on a community-based participatory research approach (CBPR) and one on a case study approach (CS). Starting off, from previous literature, we compare ethical dilemmas in both CBPR and CS with the help of the following concepts: creation of partnerships, participation and perceptions of truth, sources of conflicts and mistrust and the consequences of such research for quality, reliability and research integrity. Our research questions are: What are the ethical, practical, methodological, and scientific challenges and implications of research conducted in close proximity to informants? What can the research community learn from such experiences? [...]

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Dollar spot was officially documented in Scandinavia in 2013 and the spread and damage from this disease has increased during last years. In summer 2017, on the golf greens with red fescue (Vallda GC, Sweden) and with the mixture of red fescue, colonial bentgrass and annual bluegrass (Roskilde GC, Denmark) rolling 2 times per week reduced dollar spot 61% and 37% and rolling 4 times per week reduced dollar spot 95% and 54%, respectively. Thus, rolling 3-4 times per week can be recommended on golf greens with dollar spot pressure. In the experiment 2018 dollar spot was reduced 24% with increase in nitrogen from 150 to 240 kg ha-1 yr-1 on creeping bentgrass/annual bluegrass golf green (Kävlinge GK, Sweden). However, the increased N-rate lead to a higher degree Microdochium patch from 14% to 30%.

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Wood in service is sequestering carbon, but it is principally prone to deterioration where different fungi metabolize wood, and carbon dioxide is released back to the atmosphere. A key prerequisite for fungal degradation of wood is the presence of moisture. Conversely, keeping wood dry is the most effective way to protect wood from wood degradation and for long-term binding of carbon. Wood is porous and hygroscopic; it can take up water in liquid and gaseous form, and water is released from wood through evaporation following a given water vapour pressure gradient. During the last decades, the perception of wood-water relationships changed significantly and so did the view on moisture-affected properties of wood. Among the latter is its susceptibility to fungal decay. This paper reviews findings related to wood-water relationships and their role for fungal wood decomposition. These are complex interrelationships not yet fully understood, and current knowledge gaps are therefore identified. Studies with chemically and thermally modified wood are included as examples of fungal wood substrates with altered moisture properties. Quantification and localization of capillary and cell wall water – especially in the over-hygroscopic range – is considered crucial for determining minimum moisture thresholds (MMThr) of wood-decay fungi. The limitations of the various methods and experimental set-ups to investigate wood-water relationships and their role for fungal decay are manifold. Hence, combining techniques from wood science, mycology, biotechnology and advanced analytics is expected to provide new insights and eventually a breakthrough in understanding the intricate balance between fungal decay and wood-water relations.

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MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are non-protein coding RNAs of ~20–24 nucleotides in length that play an important role in many biological and metabolic processes, including the regulation of gene expression, plant growth and developmental processes, as well as responses to stress and pathogens. The aim of this study was to identify and characterize novel and conserved microRNAs expressed in methyl jasmonate-treated Scots pine needles. In addition, potential precursor sequences and target genes of the identified miRNAs were determined by alignment to the Pinus unigene set. Potential precursor sequences were identified using the miRAtool, conserved miRNA precursors were also tested for the ability to form the required stem-loop structure, and the minimal folding free energy indexes were calculated. By comparison with miRBase, 4975 annotated sequences were identified and assigned to 173 miRNA groups, belonging to a total of 60 conserved miRNA families. A total of 1029 potential novel miRNAs, grouped into 34 families were found, and 46 predicted precursor sequences were identified. A total of 136 potential target genes targeted by 28 families were identified. The majority of previously reported highly conserved plant miRNAs were identified in this study, as well as some conserved miRNAs previously reported to be monocot specific. No conserved dicot-specific miRNAs were identified. A number of potential gymnosperm or conifer specific miRNAs were found, shared among a range of conifer species.

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The categorical and qualitative nature of currently available soil structural data along with the lack of a geographically broad dataset have impeded progress in understanding the development of soil structure. In this study, we assembled a soil, climate, and ecological dataset for the USA, and used it to analyze relationships between soil structure (ped type, shape, size, and grade) and exogenous and endogenous variables influencing the development of soil structure. We analyzed a subset of the National Cooperative Soil Survey (NCSS) Soil Characterization database after merging this information with climatological and ecological data. The merged and cleaned dataset contains >4400 observations from approximately 1600 pedons. We found that climate, as an exogenous factor was the most important predictor of ped shape and size. Cold and/or dry climates promoted the development of larger anisotropic peds with rougher surfaces whereas warmer and more humid climates promoted the development of finer equidimensional peds with smoother surfaces. Based on these findings, we argue that climate promotes the development of soil structure along either fragmentation or aggregation pathways. The former pathway is characterized by largely mechanical processes in cold and dry environments, whereas aggregation is promoted by predominately biological and chemical mechanisms found in warmer and wet environments. This connection between climate and the development of soil structure represents a potentially important effect of climate on a morphological property strongly linked to soil hydrology that warrants further investigation with continental-scale soil data.

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Wheat dwarf virus (WDV), a mastrevirus transmitted by the leafhopper Psammotettix alienus, causes a severe disease in cereal crops. Typical symptoms of wheat plants infected by WDV are yellowing and severe dwarfing. In this present study, RNA-Seq was used to perform gene expression analysis in wheat plants in response to WDV infection. Comparative transcriptome analysis indicated that a total of 1042 differentially expressed genes (DEGs) were identified in the comparison between mock and WDV-inoculated wheat plants. Genomes ontology (GO) annotation revealed a number of DEGs associated with different biological processes, such as phytohormone metabolism, photosynthesis, DNA metabolic process, response to biotic stimulus and defense response. Among these, DEGs involved in phytohormone and photosynthesis metabolism and response pathways were further enriched and analyzed, which indicated that hormone biosynthesis, signaling and chloroplast photosynthesis-related genes might play an important role in symptom development after WDV infection. These results illustrate the dynamic nature of the wheat-WDV interaction at the transcriptome level and confirm that symptom development is a complex process, providing a solid foundation to elucidate the pathogenesis of WDV.

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This chapter emphasizes the need for active stakeholder engagement right through from strategy development to planning and implementation, to realize the benefits of sustainable bioeconomy development. In general, this varies between regions and countries. In the EU, it is considered important to engage stakeholders at all stages, whereas in developing countries engaging stakeholders so far has not been given much importance when launching new strategies. Stakeholders, including the private sector, research institutions, farmers organizations, the government and non-governmental organizations, all have important roles to play. The chapter focuses on the why, how and what type of stakeholders should be engaged, and the relevant benefits and challenges. It discusses experiences from the EU and other regions where stakeholder engagement (both formal and informal) and participative governance have led to or are necessary for successful and sustainable bioeconomy development.

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This chapter analyses the main challenges and opportunities to promote sustainable biogas technology adoption by smallholders through integrated food and energy systems (IFES), using a case study from Malonga village in the Limpopo Province of South Africa. Biogas has become attractive in recent years because of its multiple benefits and the contributions it can make to the UN SDGs. However, in Africa, its adoption remains low, due to several constraints, including: (1) water scarcity and lack of access to feedstocks; (2) high initial/upfront cost of installation and lack of investment; (3) lack of skilled labour for installation, operation and maintenance; (4) limited training facilities; (5) inadequate policy support and extension services; and (6) slow behavioural and social acceptance. Based on the information collected, integrated framework conditions that can encourage the adoption of smallholder biogas technology through IFES, were suggested. IFES will only succeed in delivering benefits, if the necessary framework conditions, such as adequate feedstock and water, training, policy support, stakeholder collaboration, credit and insurance and support services are provided. The implementation of the necessary framework conditions for biogas technology should be underpinned by conducting an integrated research study on using IFES type 2 in the context of smallholder farmers in Africa.

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This chapter focuses on ocean-land interactions and the potential for bioeconomy that offers unique opportunities to feed the increasing human population. Oceans can provide a circular bioeconomy by using increased CO2, and dissolved nutrients (P, N, Fe and other elements) in the water, leached from land-based activities. Estimates show that CO2 capture by seaweed cultivation alone can range from 1,500 to 3,000 tons per square kilometre. Ocean photosynthetic production provides more food and energy for human consumption without external inputs. This will contribute to sustainable development by providing food security and will aid the recovery of degraded ecosystems, thus directly contributing to the SDG 2 (reducing hunger) and SDG 14 (protecting life below water). Nevertheless, increasing food production from the oceans has its associated risks if the proper conditions are not met. Hence, proper coastal land use management is important as it continuously affects the nutrient flows, which in turn can lead to more serious changes in carbonate chemistry and ocean acidification. Genuine and stable partnerships, therefore, are necessary to share responsibility for environmental stewardship and to manage marine and coastal ecosystems sustainably. The chapter suggests the need for financial incentives to encourage research and innovations, support farmers associations and establish common platforms to share data and knowledge on oceans for better environmental management.

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This chapter provides a comprehensive literature review of sustainable bioeconomy development, with a focus on the definition, concepts, potential and risks involved. Countries differ on how they view bioeconomy, with some putting emphasis on sustainability and ecosystem services, while others focus on economic growth as the main goal. The literature review shows that bioeconomy is a rather new concept, at times its goals are conflicting, and its objectives are opposing. Hence, the lack of a common bioeconomy agenda and understanding across the globe will be one of the main constraints to achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). However, bioeconomy brings the sustainable development discussions back onto the policy agenda, at both the national and international levels. There are sceptics who do not support this argument and claim that bioeconomy and SDGs do not go together and this is the agenda set by some industrialized countries and the corporate sector to suit their own interests. As the impacts of bioeconomy spread beyond country borders, a common agenda is necessary to keep the balance between the economic, environmental and social objectives. Experience of bioeconomy so far is limited and hence future development must be based on the strictly responsible, accountable and sustainable use of natural resources.

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The term Circular Regulations (CR) is introduced to describe a broad regulatory framework, designed with a circular understanding of the economy. Central in this discussion is the transition towards bioeconomy, a term that is not always used consistently, and sometimes treated in the same way as circular economy (CE), although these terms are not necessarily equivalent. In this article we endorse a systemic interpretation of CE, where a continuum of approaches, extending from reusing/recycling/upcycling to refuse/rethink/reduce, gradually replace existing linear “end-of-life” concepts. CE is a key prerequisite for the bioeconomy shift, a transition that further builds on CE, where circular design and processes are further augmented with increased resource utilization and intensive applications of innovative science and technology. The prevailing regulatory arrangements in CE, however, remain either fragmented or largely based on pre-existing policies, drafted to address issues of the linear economy, thus presenting several limitations when dealing with the underlying paradigm shift: complex market relationships that go beyond the standard neoclassical model. CR adopts an encompassing approach to regulatory design; it is not meant to be a rigid set of rules, but rather a regulatory framework where institutions, market rules, and business practice explicitly account for environmental and socially responsible activities, while securing an enabling environment for innovation. CR directly reflects on CE, where bioeconomy growth is informed by science, enabled by technology, driven by business, and supported by relevant policies and institutional frameworks. The article presents a conceptual setting towards CR and a practical example for its development.

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Standard succulent vegetation mixes developed mostly in temperate climates are being increasingly used on green roofs in different climate zones with uncertain outcome regarding vegetation survival and cover. We investigated vegetation on green roofs at nine temperate, cold, and/or wet locations in Norway and Sweden covering wide ranges of latitude, mean annual temperature, annual precipitation, frequencies of freeze-thaw cycles, and longest annual dry period. The vegetation on the roofs were surveyed in two consecutive years, and weather data were compiled from meteorological databases. At all sites we detected a significant decline in species compared to originally intended (planted/sown) species. Both the survival rate and cover of the intended vegetation were positively related to the mean annual temperature. Contrary to a hypothesis, we found that intended vegetation cover was negatively rather than positively related to mean annual precipitation. Conversely, the unintended (spontaneous) vegetation was favoured by high mean annual precipitation and low mean annual temperature, possibly by enabling it to colonize bare patches and outcompete the intended vegetation. When there is high mortality and variation in cover of the intended vegetation, predicting the strength of ecosystem services the vegetation provides on green roofs is difficult. The results highlight the needs for further investigation on species traits and the local factors driving extinction and colonizations in order to improve survivability and ensure a dense vegetation throughout the successional stages of a green roof.

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Powdery mildews can be controlled by brief exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation with devastating effect on their developmental stages including conidia germination. The treatment effect can be impaired by subsequent exposure to UV-A/blue light. UV-A/blue light-activated photolyase may be responsible for this and therefore we tested the function of three cryptochrome/photolyase family (CPF)-like genes (OINE01015670_T110144, OINE01000912_T103440, and OINE01005061_T102555) identified in the obligate biotrophic fungus Pseudoidium neolycopersici, the cause of tomato powdery mildew. A photolyase-deficient mutant of Escherichia coli transformed with coding sequence of OINE01000912_T103440 and exposed to brief (UV)-C treatment (peak emission at 254 nm) showed photoreactivation and cell survival when exposed to subsequent blue light, indicating complementation of photolyase activity. In contrast, the same photolyase-deficient E. coli transformed with the coding sequences of other two CPF-like genes did not survive this treatment, even though their expression were confirmed at protein level. This confirmed that OINE01000912_T103440 is a gene encoding photolyase, here named PnPHR1, with functionality similar to the native photolyase in E. coli, and classified as a class I cyclobutane pyrimidine dimer (CPD) photolyase. Modeling of the 634-amino acid sequence of PnPHR1 suggested that it is capable of binding flavin adenine dinucleotide (FAD) and methenyltetrahydrofolate (MTHF). However, spectroscopic data of the protein produced in an E. coli expression system could only reveal the presence of a reduced form of FAD, i.e., FADH– as an intrinsic chromophore. Within the tested wavelength range of 365–525 nm, the survival of photolyase-deficient mutant E. coli transformed with PnPHR1 showed a broad action spectrum from 365 to 454 nm. This was very similar to the previously characterized action spectrum for survival of P. neolycopersici conidia that had been treated with UV-C. Quantitative RT-PCR revealed that the expression of PnPHR1 in P. neolycopersici conidia was induced by UV-C, and peak expression occurred 4 h after brief UV-C treatment. The expression of PnPHR1 was repressed when incubated in red light after the UV-C treatment, but not when incubated in UV-A/blue light. The results may explain why the disease-reducing effect of short wavelength UV is impaired by exposure to UV-A and blue light.

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Yield stability is important for food security and a sustainable crop production, especially under changing climatic conditions. It is well known that the variability of yields is linked to changes in meteorological conditions. However, little is known about the long-term effects of agronomic management strategies, such as the supply of important nutrients. We analysed the stability of four major European crops grown between 1955 and 2008 at a long-term fertilization experiment located in Germany. Six fertilizer treatments ranged from no fertilization over the omission of individual macronutrients to complete mineral fertilization with all major macronutrients (nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium and calcium). Yield stability was estimated for each crop x treatment combination using the relative yield deviation in each year from the corresponding (nonlinear) trend value (relative yield anomalies). Stability was lowest for potato, followed by sugar beet and winter wheat and highest for winter rye. Stability was highest when soils had received all nutrients with the standard deviation of relative yield anomalies being two to three times lower than for unfertilized plots. The omission of nitrogen and potassium was associated with a decrease in yield stability and a decrease in the number of simultaneous positive and negative yield anomalies among treatments. Especially in root crops nutrient supply strongly influenced both annual yield anomalies and changes in anomalies over time. During the second half of the observation period yield stability decreased for sugar beet and increased for winter wheat. Potato yields were more stable during the second period, but only under complete nutrient supply. The critical role of potassium supply for yield stability suggests potential links to changes in the water balance during the last decades. Results demonstrate the need to explicitly consider the response of crops to long-term nutrient supply for understanding and predicting changes in yield stability.

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Agricultural practices to improve yields in small‐scale farms in Africa usually focus on improving growing conditions for the crops by applying fertilizers, irrigation, and/or pesticides. This may, however, have limited effect on yield if the availability of effective pollinators is too low. In this study, we established an experiment to test whether soil fertility, soil moisture, and/or pollination was limiting watermelon (Citrullus lanatus) yields in Northern Tanzania. We subjected the experimental field to common farming practices while we treated selected plants with extrafertilizer applications, increased irrigation and/or extra pollination in a three‐way factorial experiment. One week before harvest, we assessed yield from each plant, quantified as the number of mature fruits and their weights. We also assessed fruit shape since this may affect the market price. For the first fruit ripening on each plant, we also assessed sugar content (brix) and flesh color as measures of fruit quality for human consumption. Extra pollination significantly increased the probability of a plant producing a second fruit of a size the farmer could sell at the market, and also the fruit sugar content, whereas additional fertilizer applications or increased irrigation did not improve yields. In addition, we did not find significant effects of increased fertilizer or watering on fruit sugar, weight, or color. We concluded that, insufficient pollination is limiting watermelon yields in our experiment and we suggest that this may be a common situation in sub‐Saharan Africa. It is therefore critically important that small‐scale farmers understand the role of pollinators and understand their importance for agricultural production. Agricultural policies to improve yields in developing countries should therefore also include measures to improve pollination services by giving education and advisory services to farmers on how to develop pollinator‐friendly habitats in agricultural landscapes.

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In the EU 2020 biodiversity strategy, maintaining and enhancing forest biodiversity is essential. Forest managers and technicians should include biodiversity monitoring as support for sustainible forest management and conservation issues, through the adoption of forest biodiversity indices. The present study investigates the potential of a new type of Structure from Motion (SfM) photogrammetry derived variables for modelling forest structure indicies, which do not require the availability of a digital terrain model (DTM) such as those obtainable from Airborne Laser Scanning (ALS) surveys. The DTM-independent variables were calculated using raw 3D UAV photogrammetric data for modeling eight forest structure indices which are commonly used for forest biodiversity monitoring, namely: basal area (G); quadratic mean diameter (DBHmean); the standard deviation of Diameter at Breast Height (DBHσ); DBH Gini coefficient (Gini); the standard deviation of tree heights (Hσ); dominant tree height (Hdom); Lorey’s height (Hl); and growing stock volume (V). The study included two mixed temperate forestsareas withadifferenttype ofmanagement, with onearea, left unmanagedfor thepast 50years while the other being actively managed. A total of 30 fieldsample plots were measured in the unmanaged forest, and 50 field plots were measured in the actively managed forest. The accuracy of UAV DTM-independent predictions was compared with a benchmark approach based on traditional explanatory variables calculated from ALS data. Finally, DTM-independent variables were used to produce wall-to-wall maps of the forest structure indices in the two test areas and to estimate the mean value and its uncertainty according to a model-assisted regression estimators. DTM-independent variables led to similar predictive accuracy in terms of root mean square error compared to ALS in both study areas for the eight structure indices (DTM-independent average RMSE% = 20.5 and ALS average RMSE% = 19.8). Moreover, we found that the model-assisted estimation, with both DTM-independet and ALS, obtained lower standar errors (SE) compared to the one obtained by modelbased estimation using only field plots. Relative efficiency coefficient (RE) revealed that ALS-based estimates were, on average, more efficient (average RE ALS = 3.7) than DTM-independent, (average RE DTM-independent = 3.3). However, the RE for the DTM-independent models was consistently larger than the one from theALSmodelsfortheDBH-relatedvariables(i.e.G,DBHmean,andDBHσ)andforV.Thishighlightsthepotential of DTM-independent variables, which not only can be used virtually on any forests (i.e., no need of a DTM), but also can produce as precise estimates as those from ALS data for key forest structural variables and substantially improve the efficiency of forest inventories.

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Aim: Distribution modelling is a useful approach to obtain knowledge about the spatial distribution of biodiversity, required for, for example, red-list assessments. While distribution modelling methods have been applied mostly to single species, modelling of communities and ecosystems (EDM; ecosystem-level distribution modelling) produces results that are more directly relevant for management and decision-making. Although the choice of predictors is a pivotal part of the modelling process, few studies have compared the suitability of different sets of predictors for EDM. In this study, we compare the performance of 50 single environmental variables with that of 11 composite landscape gradients (CLGs) for prediction of ecosystem types. The CLGs represent gradients in landscape element composition derived from multivariate analyses, for example “inner-outer coast” and “land use intensity.” Location: Norway. Methods: We used data from field-based ecosystem-type mapping of nine ecosystem types, and environmental variables with a resolution of 100 × 100 m. We built nine models for each ecosystem type with variables from different predictor sets. Logistic regression with forward selection of variables was used for EDM. Models were evaluated with independently collected data. Results: Most ecosystem types could be predicted reliably, although model performance differed among ecosystem types. We identified significant differences in predictive power and model parsimony across models built from different predictor sets. Climatic variables alone performed poorly, indicating that the current climate alone is not sufficient to predict the current distribution of ecosystems. Used alone, the CLGs resulted in parsimonious models with relatively high predictive power. Used together with other variables, they consistently improved the models. Main conclusions: Our study highlights the importance of variable selection in EDM. We argue that the use of composite variables as proxies for complex environmental gradients has the potential to improve predictions from EDMs and thus to inform conservation planning as well as improve the precision and credibility of red lists and global change assessments.conservation planning, distribution modelling, ecosystem classification, ecosystem types, IUCN Red List of Ecosystems, landscape gradients, spatial prediction, species response curves

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Genetic selection in commercial sheep production has mainly focussed on production traits and to a large extent ignoring behavioural traits, such as response towards predators. The Icelandic leadersheep is a sheep breed selected and known for its special behavioural traits, such as leading the flock and bringing it home from pasture in case of danger. Those traits are also said to be beneficial in areas with a high predator pressure. In this study, it was investigated if there are behavioural differences in sheep flocks with and without a leadersheep present. Behaviour of sheep flocks was observed before, during and after a predator test, in small groups of Icelandic sheep with or without a leadersheep in the group. Eleven groups of Icelandic sheep with six ewes in each group were observed in a test arena while a human, a dog and a drone passed through the pasture. Six of the groups included a leadersheep and the remaining five did not. Groups including a leadersheep spent more time grazing after both the human and dog test, indicating a faster recovering to normal behaviour. They were also located close to the exit during the dog test compared to groups without a leadersheep, fitting well with the assertion that leadersheep bring the flock home in case of danger. During the drone test, groups with a leadersheep however spent more time moving around compared to the other groups. Since the sheep had experienced both humans and dogs before, but not drones, this may indicate that groups with leadersheep recovered quickly from the figurants they had experienced before, but tended to react more in the test which was a new situation. In conclusion, it appears likely that the earlier selection for leader traits in the leadersheep have indeed changed both their own behaviour and also that this has an effect on the behaviour of group members.

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One of the most important factors affecting photosynthesis and metabolism is light absorbance by leaves and penetration through the canopy. The aim of this study was to evaluate the influence of planting density and tree development stages on photosynthetic activity, photosynthetic pigments, and carbohydrates in apple (Malus domestica Borkh.) trees in a combined way. The apple tree, Auksis, was grafted on dwarfing rootstock P 22. Space between rows was 3 m, trees were planted in 2001 in four distances: 0.25 m, 0.50 m, 0.75 m, and 1.00 m. Measurements and leaf samples were taken in the end of May (leaves fully expanded BBCH 20–25), in the middle of July (beginning of apple maturity BBCH 73–75) and at the end of August (harvest time BBCH 87–88) according BBCH—growth stages. Photosynthetic rate was significantly the lowest in the spring and tended to rise until fruit ripening, when it increased up to 19.4% compared to spring. Significantly the highest chlorophyll b and carotene α and β contents were found at the BBCH 73–75. The lowest levels of fructose and sorbitol in leaves were found at BBCH 73–75. The amount of starch accumulated in the leaves increased three times in summer compared to spring. Reduced distance between trees to four times (from 1 m to 0.25 m) showed clear competitive stress, as the decrease of photosynthetic rate (up to 36.4–38.6%) and total starch (up to 37–53%) was observed. The photosynthetic behaviour of apple trees was significantly affected by the development stage during the particular season which is related with physiological changes of metabolites transport and their distribution during fruit ripening and leaf senescence.

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Understanding the detailed timing of crop phenology and their variability enhances grain yield and quality by providing precise scheduling of irrigation, fertilization, and crop protection mechanisms. Advances in information and communication technology (ICT) provide a unique opportunity to develop agriculture-related tools that enhance wall-to-wall upscaling of data outputs from point-location data to wide-area spatial scales. Because of the heterogeneity of the worldwide agro-ecological zones where crops are cultivated, it is unproductive to perform plant phenology research without providing means to upscale results to landscape-level while safeguarding field-scale relevance. This paper presents an advanced, reproducible, and open-source software for plant phenology prediction and mapping (PPMaP) that inputs data obtained from multi-location field experiments to derive models for any crop variety. This information can then be applied consecutively at a localized grid within a spatial framework to produce plant phenology predictions at the landscape level. This software runs on the ‘Windows’ platform and supports the development of process-oriented and temperature-driven plant phenology models by intuitively and interactively leading the user through a step-by-step progression to the production of spatial maps for any region of interest in sub-Saharan Africa. Maize (Zea mays L.) was used to demonstrate the robustness, versatility, and high computing efficiency of the resulting modeling outputs of the PPMaP. The framework was implemented in R, providing a flexible and easy-to-use GUI interface. Since this allows for appropriate scaling to the larger spatial domain, the software can effectively be used to determine the spatially explicit length of growing period (LGP) of any variety.

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To mitigate the risk of erosion and nutrient runoff, reduced tillage has become more prevalent in Norway. Within within recent decades, there have been some years with relatively high occurrence of Fusarium head blight and mycotoxins in Norwegian cereal grain. This is thought to have been caused by an increased inoculum potential (IP) of Fusarium spp. due to larger amount of crop residues remaining on the soil surface, in combination with weather conditions promoting fungal growth and infection of cereal plants. The objective of this work was to elucidate the influence of different tillage practices on the IP of Fusarium spp. and the subsequent Fusarium-infection and mycotoxin contamination of spring wheat grain at harvest. Tillage trials were conducted at two locations in southeast Norway (Solør and Toten) over three years, 2010-2012. Residues of wheat from the previous year were collected in spring. Fusarium avenaceum and Fusarium graminearum were the most common Fusarium species recorded on wheat straw residues. IP was calculated as the percentage of the residues infested with Fusarium spp. multiplied by the proportion of the soil surface covered with residues. The IP of Fusarium spp. was lower in ploughed plots compared to those tilled with harrowing only. Ploughing in spring resulted in a similarly low IP as autumn ploughing. In contrast, harrowing in autumn generally reduced IP more than did spring harrowing. The mycotoxin levels in the harvested wheat were generally low, except for deoxynivalenol at high levels in Solør 2011. Despite a lower IP of ploughed versus harrowed plots, this was not reflected in the content of Fusarium and mycotoxins in harvested grain. The Fusarium species that dominated in the residues examined in this study were the same as those detected in the harvested grain, supporting the finding that residues are an important source of inoculum.

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Wildlife managers conduct population inventories to monitor species, particularly those at-risk. Although costly and time consuming, grid-based DNA hair-snag sampling has been the standard protocol for grizzly bear inventories in North America, while opportunistic fecal DNA sampling is more commonly used in Europe. Our aim is to determine if low-cost, low-effort scat sampling along roads can replace the current standard. We compare two genetic non-invasive techniques using concurrent sampling within the same grid system and spatially explicit capture–recapture. We found that given our methodology and the present status of fecal genotyping for grizzly bears, scat sampling along roads cannot replace hair sampling to estimate population size in low-density areas. Hair sampling identified the majority of individual grizzly bears, with a higher success rate of individuals identified from grizzly bear samples (100%) compared to scat sampling (14%). Using scat DNA to supplement hair data did not change population estimates, but it did improve estimate precision. Scat samples had higher success identifying species (98%) compared with hair (80%). Scat sampling detected grizzly bears in grid cells where hair sampling showed non-detection, with almost twice the number of cells indicating grizzly bear presence. Based on our methods and projected expenses for future implementation, we estimated an approximate 30% cost reduction for sampling scat relative to hair. Our research explores the application of genetic non-invasive approaches to monitor bear populations. We recommend wildlife managers continue to use hair-snag sampling as the primary method for DNA inventories, while employing scat sampling as supplemental to increase estimate precision. Scat sampling may better indicate presence of bear species through greater numbers and spatial distribution of detections, if sampling is systematic across the entire area of interest. Our findings speak to the management of other species and regions, and contribute to ongoing advances of monitoring wildlife populations.

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Precision farming technologies were implemented into a commercial harrow to increase selectivity of weed harrowing in spring cereals. Digital cameras were mounted before and after the harrow measuring crop cover. Crop soil cover (CSC) was computed out of these two images. Eight field experiments were carried out in spring cereals. Mode of harrowing intensity was changed in four experiments by speed, number of passes and tine angle. Each mode was varied in five intensities. In four experiments, only intensity of harrowing was changed. Weed control efficacy (WCE) and CSC were measured immediately after harrowing. Crop recovery was assessed 14 days after harrowing. Modes of intensity were not significantly different. However, intensity had significant effects on WCE and CSC. Cereals recovered from 10% CSC, and selectivity was in the constant range at 10% CSC. Therefore, 10% CSC was the threshold for the decision algorithm. If the actual CSC was below 10% CSC, intensity was increased. If the actual CSC was higher than 10%, intensity was decreased. Image analysis, decision support system and automatic control of harrowing intensity by hydraulic adjustment of tine angle were installed on a controller mounted on the harrow. The new system was tested in an additional field study. Threshold values for CSC were set at 10%, 30% and 60%. Automatic tine angle adjustment precisely realised the three different CSC values with variations of 1.5% to 3%. This development contributes to selective weed control and supports farmers during harrowing.

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Key message We identifed allelic variation at two major loci, QSnb.nmbu-2A.1 and QSnb.nmbu-5A.1, showing consistent and additive efects on SNB feld resistance. Validation of QSnb.nmbu-2A.1 across genetic backgrounds further highlights its usefulness for marker-assisted selection. Abstract Septoria nodorum blotch (SNB) is a disease of wheat (Triticum aestivum and T. durum) caused by the necrotrophic fungal pathogen Parastagonospora nodorum. SNB resistance is a typical quantitative trait, controlled by multiple quantitative trait loci (QTL) of minor efect. To achieve increased plant resistance, selection for resistance alleles and/or selection against susceptibility alleles must be undertaken. Here, we performed genetic analysis of SNB resistance using an eight-founder German Multiparent Advanced Generation Inter-Cross (MAGIC) population, termed BMWpop. Field trials and greenhouse testing were conducted over three seasons in Norway, with genetic analysis identifying ten SNB resistance QTL. Of these, two QTL were identifed over two seasons: QSnb.nmbu-2A.1 on chromosome 2A and QSnb.nmbu-5A.1 on chromosome 5A. The chromosome 2A BMWpop QTL co-located with a robust SNB resistance QTL recently identifed in an independent eightfounder MAGIC population constructed using varieties released in the United Kingdom (UK). The validation of this SNB resistance QTL in two independent multi-founder mapping populations, regardless of the diferences in genetic background and agricultural environment, highlights the value of this locus in SNB resistance breeding. The second robust QTL identifed in the BMWpop, QSnb.nmbu-5A.1, was not identifed in the UK MAGIC population. Combining resistance alleles at both loci resulted in additive efects on SNB resistance. Therefore, using marker assisted selection to combine resistance alleles is a promising strategy for improving SNB resistance in wheat breeding. Indeed, the multi-locus haplotypes determined in this study provide markers for efcient tracking of these benefcial alleles in future wheat genetics and breeding activities.

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This study investigates the governance of bioenergy systems (BESs) and how it influences the bioenergy policy process and local sustainable development. The study compares the BES in Emilia Romagna and Hedmark. At first, bioenergy was expected to mitigate climate change and to tackle the crisis of the primary sectors and related industries. However, bioenergy policies were not equipped to address cross‐sectoral and multilevel issues. Therefore, they failed to secure the local, sustainable development. Critical weaknesses lie in BES governance. Actors' discourses, rules, and power issues form a complex structure that influences the bioenergy policy process and its outcomes. The study relies on systems thinking and system dynamics, and the pathways approach. It uses the system archetypes to investigate the bioenergy policy feedback dynamics and how to leverage local, sustainable development. Results show that power relations and social opposition are critical to a policy change that best secures local, sustainable development.

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The decay of organic material—litter decomposition—is a critical process for life on Earth and an essential part of the global carbon cycle. Yet, this basic process remains unknown to many citizens. The Tea Bag Index (TBI) measures decomposition in a standardized, measurable, achievable, climate-relevant, and time-relevant way by burying commercial tea bags in soil for three months and calculating proxies to characterize the decomposition process (expressed as decomposition rate (k) and stabilization factor (S)). We measured TBI at 8 cm soil depth with the help of school and farm citizen scientists in 2015 in Sweden and in 2016 in Austria. Questionnaires to the participating schools and farms enabled us to capture lessons learned from this participatory data collection. In total >5500 citizen scientists participated in the mass experiments, and approximately 50% of the tea bags sent out yielded successful results that fell well within previously reported ranges. The average decomposition rates (k) ranged from 0.008 to 0.012 g d−1 in Sweden and from 0.012 to 0.015 g d−1 in Austria. Stabilization factors (S) were up to four times higher in Sweden than Austria. Taking part in a global experiment was a great incentive for participants, and in future experiments the citizen scientists and TBI would benefit from having enhanced communication between the researchers and participants about the results gained.

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This paper contributes to the debate on sustainable water consumption by exploring the relation between consumers’ personality, understanding of risk/trust and social distinction in water drinking practices in Norway. Our main research question, how can we understand preferences for water consumption?, is approached by answering a set of hypotheses inspired by a combination of three theoretical approaches. Latent variables measuring personality and conspicuous attitudes are included in frequency models based on the statistical beta distribution together with other predictors. Statistical tests were performed to find the connection between expected frequency of water consumption, personality, risk/trust and conspicuous attitudes. The conclusion is that the consequence of the connections between consumers’ personality, understanding of risk and conspicuous consumption of water should be considered by Norwegian stakeholders when planning future strategies and methods for more sustainable water consumption.

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Background: The current food system has major consequences for the environment and for human health. Alignment of the food policy areas of mitigating climate change and public health will ensure coherent and effective policy interventions for sustaining human health and the environment. Thispaperexploresliteratureondemand-sidepoliciesthataimtoreduceconsumptionof animal-basedfoods,increaseplant-basedfoods,andreduceoverconsumption. Methods:Wesearched for publications, published between January 2000 and December 2019, considering the above policy domains. Articles were distinguished for type of policy instrument, for topic via keywords and examples were given. Results: The majority of demand-side policies focus on preventing overweight and obesity, using all types of policy instruments including more forceful market-based policies. Hardly any examples of public policies explicitly aiming to lower animal-based foods consumption were found. Policies combining health and sustainability objectives are few and mainly of the information type. Discussion: Moving towards environmentally sustainable and healthy diets is challenging as the implemented demand-side policies focus largely on human health, and not yet on environmental outcomes, or on win-wins. Policies targeting foods from the health perspective can contribute to lower environmental impacts, by indicating suitable animal-based food replacers, and aiming at avoiding overconsumption of energy dense-nutrient poor foods. Preferred policies include a variety of instruments, including strong measures. Conclusions: Working solutions are available to ensure coherent and effective demand side food policies aligning public health and environmental aims. Implementation of aligned and effective policy packages is urgent and needed.

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This paper studies the hypothesis that farm structure and the regional distribution of agricultural activity themselves have a significant impact on greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from agriculture. Applying a dynamic model for the Norwegian agricultural sector covering the entire farm population, the model results support the hypothesis. Even without mitigation options, GHG emissions decline by 1.4 per cent if agriculture becomes regionally concentrated and increase by 1.5 per cent if a policy that favors a small-scale farm structure is put in place. Adding a carbon tax to a policy that leads to regional concentration, may help to reconcile competing policy objectives. A switch from animal production to crop production, and an extensification of animal production keeps a large resource base across the country while cutting GHG emissions.

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The morphological and productive aspects of Norwegian sheep have developed over time and adapted to the diverse environment of the country. Before 1900, native Norwegian sheep were crossed with UK breeds to attain higher body weight and reproductive efficiency. Subsequent selection programs eventually led to the creation of the heavier (adults often >90 kg) Norwegian White Sheep (NWS), today constituting 70% of the recorded ewes. The modern Norwegian (White) Spæl (NS) sheep, mostly <75 kg and accounting for 10% of the recorded ewe population, originated from the native short-tailed breeds that are smaller and are believed to prefer grazing at higher altitudes than NWS. Other registered breeds of the short-tailed spæl type account for another 12% of the recorded sheep. Rugged Norwegian terrain with rich summer pastures makes the NS a complementary breed to the NWS. Increasing demand for year-round fresh meat requires changes at the farm level. Efficient use of local feed resources by extensive feeding of smaller size ewes is an opportunity for attaining economic gains and for year-round fresh meat production. The NS has a lighter bodyweight, requiring less housing space, is efficient in grazing rangeland and local pastures, and is better suited to outdoor winter grazing in coastal and fjord areas. In this paper, we compare the farm profitability (gross margin) of two Norwegian sheep breeds (NS and NWS) using a linear programming model designed for the coastal and fjord areas. The impact of ewe body weight, housing capacity, and meat produced per unit of concentrate are discussed.

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In the Nordic countries Finland, Norway and Sweden, the most common regeneration method is planting after clearcutting and, often, mechanical site preparation (MSP). The main focus of this study is to review quantitative effects that have been reported for the five main MSP methods in terms of survival and growth of manually planted coniferous seedlings of Norway spruce (Picea abies (L.) Karst.), Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) and lodgepole pine (Pinus contorta var. latifolia Engelm.) in clearcuts in these three countries. Meta analyses are used to compare the effects of MSP methods to control areas where there was no MSP and identify any relationships with temperature sum and number of years after planting. In addition, the area of disturbed soil surface and the emergence of naturally regenerated seedlings are evaluated. The MSP methods considered are patch scarification, disc trenching, mounding, soil inversion and ploughing. Studies performed at sites with predominately mineral soils (with an organic topsoil no thicker than 0.30 m), in boreal, nemo-boreal and nemoral vegetation zones in the three Fenno-Scandinavian countries are included in the review. Data from 26 experimental and five survey studies in total were compiled and evaluated. The results show that survival rates of planted conifers at sites where seedlings are not strongly affected by pine weevil (Hylobius abietis L.) are generally 80–90% after MSP, and 15–20 percent units higher than after planting in non-prepared sites. The experimental data indicated that soil inversion and potentially ploughing (few studies) give marginally greater rates than the other methods in this respect. The effects of MSP on survival seem to be independent of the temperature sum. Below 800 degree days, however, the reported survival rates are more variable. MSP generally results in trees 10–25% taller 10–15 years after planting compared to no MSP. The strength of the growth effect appears to be inversely related to the temperature sum. The compiled data may assist in the design, evaluation and comparison of possible regeneration chains, i.e. analyses of the efficiency and cost-effectiveness of multiple combinations of reforestation measures.

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Climate change is expected to accelerate the microbial degradation of the many extraordinary well-preserved organic archaeological deposits found in the Arctic. This could potentially lead to a major loss of wooden artefacts that are still buried within the region. Here, we carry out the first large-scale investigation of wood degradation within archaeological deposits in the Arctic. This is done based on wooden samples from 11 archaeological sites that are located along a climatic gradient in Western Greenland. Our results show that Ascomycota fungi are causing extensive soft rot decay at all sites regardless of climate and local environment, but the group is diverse and many of the species were only found once. Cadophora species known to cause soft rot in polar environments were the most abundant Ascomycota found and their occurrence in native wood samples underlines that they are present locally. Basidiomycota fungi were also present at all sites. In the majority of samples, however, these aggressive and potentially very damaging wood degraders have caused limited decay so far, probably due to unfavorable growth conditions. The presence of these wood degrading fungi suggests that archaeological wooden artefacts may become further endangered if climate change leads to more favorable growth conditions.

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Root-associated entomopathogenic fungi (R-AEF) indirectly infuence herbivorous insect performance. However, host plant-R-AEF interactions and R-AEF as biological control agents have been studied independently and without much attention to the potential synergy between these functional traits. In this study, we evaluated behavioral responses of cabbage root fies [Delia radicum L. (Diptera: Anthomyiidae)] to a host plant (white cabbage cabbage Brassica oleracea var. capitata f. alba cv. Castello L.) with and without the R-AEF Metarhizium brunneum (Petch). We performed experiments on leaf refectance, phytohormonal composition and host plant location behavior (behavioral processes that contribute to locating and selecting an adequate host plant in the environment). Compared to control host plants, R-AEF inoculation caused, on one hand, a decrease in refectance of host plant leaves in the near-infrared portion of the radiometric spectrum and, on the other, an increase in the production of jasmonic, (+)-7-iso-jasmonoyl-l-isoleucine and salicylic acid in certain parts of the host plant. Under both greenhouse and feld settings, landing and oviposition by cabbage root fy females were positively afected by R-AEF inoculation of host plants. The fungal-induced change in leaf refectance may have altered visual cues used by the cabbage root fies in their host plant selection. This is the frst study providing evidence for the hypothesis that R-AEF manipulate the suitability of their host plant to attract herbivorous insects.

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A non-destructive measuring technique was applied to test major vine geometric traits on measurements collected by a contactless sensor. Three-dimensional optical sensors have evolved over the past decade, and these advancements may be useful in improving phenomics technologies for other crops, such as woody perennials. Red, green and blue-depth (RGB-D) cameras, namely Microsoft Kinect, have a significant influence on recent computer vision and robotics research. In this experiment an adaptable mobile platform was used for the acquisition of depth images for the non-destructive assessment of branch volume (pruning weight) and related to grape yield in vineyard crops. Vineyard yield prediction provides useful insights about the anticipated yield to the winegrower, guiding strategic decisions to accomplish optimal quantity and efficiency, and supporting the winegrower with decision-making. A Kinect v2 system on-board to an on-ground electric vehicle was capable of producing precise 3D point clouds of vine rows under six different management cropping systems. The generated models demonstrated strong consistency between 3D images and vine structures from the actual physical parameters when average values were calculated. Correlations of Kinect branch volume with pruning weight (dry biomass) resulted in high coefficients of determination (R2 = 0.80). In the study of vineyard yield correlations, the measured volume was found to have a good power law relationship (R2 = 0.87). However due to low capability of most depth cameras to properly build 3-D shapes of small details the results for each treatment when calculated separately were not consistent. Nonetheless, Kinect v2 has a tremendous potential as a 3D sensor in agricultural applications for proximal sensing operations, benefiting from its high frame rate, low price in comparison with other depth cameras, and high robustness

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In integrated pest management (IPM), the goal is to keep the impact of damaging agents below a threshold level with reduced pesticide use. The present review is focusing on IPM of fungal diseases and Phytophthora root rot in Norwegian Christmas tree plantations. Healthy transplants are of vital importance to give the production a good establishment. Sanitation of diseased material and weeds is also very important in IPM. Management strategies will vary with the disease-causing agent in question, therefore, correct identification is necessary. The major pathogens are within the kingdom’s Fungi (e.g. Neonectria neomacrospora) and Chromista (e.g. Phytophthora spp.). They depend on relatively high humidity or free moisture to spread and infect. Any factors diminishing the duration of wet conditions will, therefore, reduce the disease pressure. Efficient weed management in Christmas tree fields will increase air circulation and thereby ensure a quicker drying after precipitation. Furthermore, certain weed species are host plants for rust fungi on Christmas trees, and thus, removal of the alternate host is a highly relevant control strategy. In Norway, fungicide use in Christmas trees is limited and only recommended during the short period from bud break to fully elongated shoots, generally the most vulnerable period concerning fungal attacks.

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Hyperspectral imaging has many applications. However, the high device costs and low hyperspectral image resolution are major obstacles limiting its wider application in agriculture and other fields. Hyperspectral image reconstruction from a single RGB image fully addresses these two problems. The robust HSCNN-R model with mean relative absolute error loss function and evaluated by the Mean Relative Absolute Error metric was selected through permutation tests from models with combinations of loss functions and evaluation metrics, using tomato as a case study. Hyperspectral images were subsequently reconstructed from single tomato RGB images taken by a smartphone camera. The reconstructed images were used to predict tomato quality properties such as the ratio of soluble solid content to total titratable acidity and normalized anthocyanin index. Both predicted parameters showed very good agreement with corresponding “ground truth” values and high significance in an F test. This study showed the suitability of hyperspectral image reconstruction from single RGB images for fruit quality control purposes, underpinning the potential of the technology—recovering hyperspectral properties in high resolution—for real-world, real time monitoring applications in agriculture any beyond.

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1. Due to globalisation, trade and transport, the spread of alien species is increasing dramatically. Some alien species become ecologically harmful by threatening native biota. This can lead to irreversible changes in local biodiversity and ecosystem functioning, and, ultimately, to biotic homogenisation. 2. We risk-assessed all alien plants, animals, fungi and algae, within certain delimitations, that are known to reproduce in Norway. Mainland Norway and the Arctic archipelago of Svalbard plus Jan Mayen were treated as separate assessment areas. Assessments followed the Generic Ecological Impact Assessment of Alien Species (GEIAA) protocol, which uses a fully quantitative set of criteria. 3. A total of 1519 species were risk-assessed, of which 1183 were species reproducing in mainland Norway. Among these, 9% were assessed to have a severe impact, 7% high impact, 7% potentially high impact, and 49% low impact, whereas 29% had no known impact. In Svalbard, 16 alien species were reproducing, one of which with a severe impact. 4. The impact assessments also covered 319 so-called door-knockers, i.e. species that are likely to establish in Norway within 50 years, and 12 regionally alien species. Of the door-knockers, 8% and 10% were assessed to have a severe and high impact, respectively. 5. The impact category of most species was driven by negative interactions with native species, transformation of threatened ecosystems, or genetic contamination. The proportion of alien species with high or severe impact varied significantly across the different pathways of introduction, taxonomic groups, time of introduction, and the environments colonised, but not across continents of origin. 6. Given the large number of alien species reproducing in Norway and the preponderance of species with low impact, it is neither realistic nor necessary to eradicate all of them. Our results can guide management authorities in two ways. First, the use of quantitative assessment criteria facilitates the prioritisation of management resources across species. Second, the background information collected for each species, such as introduction pathways, area of occupancy and ecosystems affected, helps designing appropriate management measures.

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The impact of historical and present drivers on biodiversity, particularly species richness and abundance, in afforestation areas concerning non-native tree species is still poorly understood. A better understanding is important to ensure appropriate forest management in the face of climate change and increasing demand for wood products. Here, we have reviewed 75 biodiversity studies in Sitka spruce plantations in NW Europe, forest management recommendations for maintaining biodiversity, timber production and carbon sequestration in Sitka spruce forests in coastal Norway compared to NW Europe. Due to more focus on non-market landscape benefits and protection sites in coastal areas, transformation of spruce plantations is common. Premature cutting of stands and shelterbelts and clearing away saplings has become the dominant management practice in Norway. Based on the extent of use in Norway, and results from biodiversity studies in Sitka spruce plantations in NW Europe, the quality of evidence for the prevailing practice and recommendations in coastal Norway is highly questioned. To reduce conflicts, we propose a more knowledge-based management, a broader perspective underpinning the range of afforestation goals, also including the use of alternative silvicultural methods to increase structural variation in Sitka spruce stands.

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Aquaculture is a fast‐growing and rapidly expanding industry in the world. Probiotics are widely used in aquaculture and have provided benefits to aquatic animal health, and it is also a promising alternative to antibiotics for control of fish diseases. With the development of biotechnology, new expression systems and novel techniques for the surface display of heterologous proteins in surface of probiotics cells have been developed. This review provides an overview of the systems and strategies for displaying functional proteins on the surface of probiotics commonly used in aquaculture, which are Bacillus subtilis, Bacillus thuringiensis, lactic acid bacteria represented by Lactococcus lactis and yeast. Their applications in aquaculture especially for oral vaccine development afforded by this technology and prospects and challenges associated with this technology are also highlighted.

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From a theoretical perspective, it is well stated that the farm's decision on the use of inputs depends on the farmer's ability to make an efficient decision over time. The existing literature in performance analysis of the dairy farms based on static modeling and thus ignores the inter-temporal nature of production decisions. This paper aims to construct a dynamic stochastic production frontier incorporating the sluggish adjustment of inputs, to measure the performance of dairy farms in Norway. The empirical application focused on the farm-level analysis of the Norwegian dairy sector for 2000- 2018. The dynamic frontier estimated using the system Generalized Method of Moments estimator. The analysis shows that the static model in the previous studies underestimates the performance of the dairy farms.

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According to World Health Organization a diet high in vegetables may reduce the risk of coronary heart diseases, stroke, and certain types of cancer. In addition, vegetables have lower carbon footprints than most other foods. But what is the most important motivation to consume vegetables? Is it health or is it climate and the environment? The main objective in this paper is to find drivers behind vegetable consumption, with emphasis on health and environmental motivation. To analyze the connection between individual's attitudes towards the climate, environment and health and the frequency of vegetable consumption we used survey data from 2015. The individual attitudes are hidden but through questions regarding perceptions and behavior the attitudes may be retrieved. We constructed latent variables to represent measures of environment and health attitudes. These latent variables were included in an econometric model linking attitudes with frequency of vegetable consumption. We applied the model to test for differences in frequencies of vegetable consumption for individuals with little and high degree of environmental and health consciousness. The main results show that health is a stronger motivator for vegetable consumption than environmental consciousness.

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Silicon is found in all plants and the accumulation of silicon can improve plant tolerance to biotic stress. Strawberry powdery mildew (Podosphaera aphanis) and two-spotted spider mite (Tetranychus urticae) are both detrimental to strawberry production worldwide. Two field trials were done on a UK commercial strawberry farm in 2014 and 2015, to assess the effects of silicon nutrient applied via the fertigation system on P. aphanis and T. urticae. The silicon treatments decreased the severity of both P. aphanis and T. urticae in two consecutive years on different cultivars. The percentage leaf area infected with P. aphanis mycelium from silicon treated plants were 2.19 (in 2014) and 0.41 (in 2015) compared with 3.08 (in 2014) and 0.57 (in 2015) from the untreated plants. The etiology of the pathogen as measured by the Area Under the Disease Progress Curve from silicon (with and without fungicides) treatments was 152.7 compared with 217.5 from non-silicon (with and without fungicides) treatments for the overall period of 2014–2015. The average numbers of T. urticae recorded on strawberry leaves were 1.43 (in 2014) and 1.83 (in 2015) in plants treated with silicon compared with 8.82 (in 2014) and 6.69 (in 2015) in untreated plants. The silicon contents of the leaves from the silicon alone treatment were 26.8 μg mg-1 (in 2014) and 22.2 μg mg-1 (in 2015) compared with 19.7 μg mg-1 (in 2014) and 21.4 μg mg-1 (in 2015) from the untreated. The silicon nutrient root application contributed to improved plant resilience against P. aphanis and T. urticae. Silicon could play an important role in broad spectrum control of pests and diseases in commercial strawberry production.

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Wood is a porous, hygroscopic material with engineering properties that depend significantly on the amount of water (moisture) in the material. Water in wood can be present in both cell walls and the porous void-structure of the material, but it is only water in cell walls that affects the engineering properties. An important characteristic of wood is therefore the capacity for water of its solid cell walls, i.e. the maximum cell wall moisture content. However, this quantity is not straight-forward to determine experimentally, and the measured value may depend on the experimental technique used. In this study, we used a triangulation approach to determine the maximum cell wall moisture content by using three experimental techniques based on different measurement principles: low-field nuclear magnetic resonance (LFNMR) relaxometry, differential scanning calorimetry (DSC), and the solute exclusion technique (SET). The LFNMR data were furthermore analysed by two varieties of exponential decay analysis. These techniques were used to determine the maximum cell wall moisture contents of nine different wood species, covering a wide range of densities. The results from statistical analysis showed that LFNMR yielded lower cell wall moisture contents than DSC and SET, which were fairly similar. Both of the latter methods include factors that could either under-estimate or over-estimate the measured cell wall moisture content. Because of this and the fact that the DSC and SET methods are based on different measurement principles, it is likely that they provide realistic values of the cell wall moisture content in the water-saturated state.

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Knowledge about population genetic structure and dispersal capabilities is important for the development of targeted management strategies for agricultural pest species. The apple fruit moth, Argyresthia conjugella (Lepidoptera, Yponomeutidae), is a pre-dispersal seed predator. Larvae feed on rowanberries (Sorbus aucuparia), and when rowanberry seed production is low (i.e., inter-masting), the moth switches from laying eggs in rowanberries to apples (Malus domestica), resulting in devastating losses in apple crops. Using genetic methods, we investigated if this small moth expresses any local genetic structure, or alternatively if gene flow may be high within the Scandinavian Peninsula (~850.000 km2, 55o - 69o N). Genetic diversity was found to be high (n = 669, mean He = 0.71). For three out of ten tetranucleotide STRs, we detected heterozygote deficiency caused by null alleles, but tests showed little impact on the overall results. Genetic differentiation between the 28 sampling locations was very low (average FST = 0.016, P < 0.000). Surprisingly, we found that all individuals could be assigned to one of two non-geographic genetic clusters, and that a third, geographic cluster was found to be associated with 30% of the sampling locations, with weak but significant signals of isolation-by-distance. Conclusively, our findings suggest wind-aided dispersal and spatial synchrony of both sexes of the apple fruit moth over large areas and across very different climatic zones. We speculate that the species may recently have had two separate genetic origins caused by a genetic bottleneck after inter-masting, followed by rapid dispersal and homogenization of the gene pool across the landscape. We suggest further investigations of spatial genetic similarities and differences of the apple fruit moth at larger geographical scales, through life-stages, across inter-masting, and during attacks by the parasitoid wasp (Microgaster politus).

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Shallot (Allium cepa var. aggregatum), a small bulb onion, is widely grown in the world. We previously reported a droplet-vitrification for cryopreservation of in vitro-grown shoot tips of shallot genotype ‘10603’. The present study further evaluated rooting, vegetative growth, bulb production and contents of biochemical compounds, as well as genetic stability in cryo-derived plants. The results showed no significant differences in rooting, vegetative growth, bulb production and contents of soluble sugars and flavonols between the cryo- and in vitro-derived plants. Analyses of ISSR and AFLP markers did not detect any polymorphic bands in the cryo-derived plants. These results indicate rooting and vegetative growth ability, biochemical compounds and genetic stability were maintained in cryo-derived plants. The present study provides experimental evidences that support the use of cryopreservation method for long-term preservation of genetic resources of shallots and other Allium species.

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BACKGROUND Pollen beetles are key pests in oilseed rape (OSR) production. These beetles use visual and olfactory cues to locate their host plants at specific phenological stages, hence trap cropping may represent an alternative pest control strategy. In this study, a trap crop strategy for spring OSR was developed. To elaborate such a trap cropping system, a pest control measure that eradicates the attracted beetles in the trap crop before they migrate further into the main crop was included in the final trap cropping strategy. RESULTS Testing yellow‐flowering turnip rape and one yellow‐ and two cream‐coloured flowering OSR cultivars as potential crops in different trap cropping strategies, we found that pollen beetles clearly preferred turnip rape over the cream‐coloured and yellow OSR cultivars, and preferred the yellow OSR cultivar over the two cream‐coloured cultivars. This behaviour was related to the plant growth stage and associated volatile and colour signals of the tested cultivars. Using turnip rape as a trap crop and testing kairomone‐ or insecticide‐assisted trap cropping as the pest control strategy was as effective as compared with whole fields treated with a standard pesticide. CONCLUSION Combining a turnip rape cultivar as trap crop with kairomone traps placed in the trap crop as a killing agent may enable renunciation of pesticides in spring OSR production. © 2020 Society of Chemical Industry

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Afforestation of marginal cultivated land is an internationally approved climate mitigation strategy, however, with uncertain implications for soil organic carbon (SOC) storage. We examined the effect of forest planting by measuring SOC at two adjacent sites: one with a Norway spruce forest planted in 1968 and one actively grazed pasture. Both sites had similar land-use history before forest planting, and they were as similar as possible in all other edaphic factors. There were no significant differences in SOC stocks down to 30 cm mineral soil, 7.15 and 8.51 kg C m−2 in the forest plantation and pasture respectively. Only a minimal build-up of an O horizon, less than 2 cm, was observed in the plantation. The SOC stocks of the plantation and pasture were not significantly different from that of a nearby old forest, 7.17 kg C m−2. When comparing these three land-uses we found that there were significant differences in the upper 10 cm of the soil with regard to other soil properties. Nitrogen (N) stock and pH were significantly lower in the old forest compared to the plantation, which again was significantly lower than that of the pasture. The opposite was the case for the C/N ratio. We conclude that there were no significant differences in SOC stocks in the upper 30 cm 50 years after afforestation with Norway spruce, but that there is still a legacy from the former cultivation that may influence both productivity and organic matter dynamics.

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We used a survey to investigate some motives for drinking red, sparkling, and white wine among 3,433 Norwegian respondents. Respondents with interest in wine drank all types of wine more frequently than those with little interest. Interest in cultural activities, which often are associated with wine consumption, also increased the frequency of consumption of all types of wine. Respondents who scored high on conspicuous attitudes drank sparkling and white wine more frequently than respondents with low scores. However, conspicuous attitudes did not affect the frequency of red wine consumption. (JEL Classifications: D12, Q13).

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The invasive slug Arion vulgaris (Gastropoda: Arionidae) is an agricultural pest and serious nuisance in gardens of Central and Northern Europe. To investigate if the success of A.vulgaris in Norway can be attributed to a release from parasites, we compared the prevalence and parasite load of nematodes and trematodes in A. vulgaris to that of three native gastropod species, A. circumscriptus, A. fasciatus and Arianta arbustorum, in SE Norway. We found A. vulgaris to have the highest prevalence of both parasite groups (49% nematodes, 76% trematodes), which does not support the parasite release hypothesis, but rather points to A. vulgaris as a potentially important intermediate host of these parasites. For trematodes the number of individuals (parasite load) did not differ among host species; for nematodes it was higher in A. vulgaris than A. fasciatus. To further compare the parasite susceptibility of the surveyed gastropods, we exposed A. vulgaris, A. fasciatus, and A. arbustorum to a slug parasitic nematode, Phasmarhabditis hermaphrodita, in the laboratory. This nematode is commercially available and widely used to control A. vulgaris. The non-target species A. fasciatus was most affected, with 100% infection, 60% mortality and significant feeding inhibition. A. vulgaris was also 100% infected, but suffered only 20% mortality and little feeding inhibition. The load of P. hermaphrodita in infected specimens was not significantly different for the two Arion species (median: 22.5 and 45, respectively). Only 35% of A. arbustorum snails were infected, none died, and parasite load was very low (median: 2). However, they showed a near complete feeding inhibition at highest nematode dose, and avoided nematode-infested soil. Our results indicate that A. vulgaris may be less susceptible to P. hermaphrodita than the native A. fasciatus, and that non-target effects of applying this nematode in fields and gardens should be further investigated.

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In a climate model, surface energy and water fluxes of the vegetated ecosystem largely depend on important structural attributes like leaf area index and canopy height. For forests, management can greatly alter these attributes with resulting consequences for the surface albedo, surface roughness, and evapotranspiration. The sensitivity of surface energy and water budgets to alterations in forest structure is relatively unknown in boreal regions, particularly in Nordic Fennoscandia (Norway, Sweden, and Finland), where the forest management footprint is large. Here we perform offline simulations to quantify the sensitivity of surface heat and moisture fluxes to changes in forest composition and structure across daily, seasonal, and annual time scales. For the region on average, it is found that broadleaved deciduous forests cool the surface by 0.16 K annually and 0.3 K in the growing season owed to higher year‐round albedo and lower Bowen ratio, yet in some locations the local cooling can be as much as 2.4 K and 3.0 K, respectively. Moreover, fully developed forests cool the surface by 0.04 K annually in our domain owed to higher evapotranspiration, reaching up to 0.4 K locally in some locations, whereas undeveloped forests warm annually by 0.14 K owed to much lower evapotranspiration reaching up to 0.8 K for some locations. If regional forests are ever to be managed for the local climate regulation services that they provide, our results are an important first step illuminating the potential adverse impacts or benefits across space and time.

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European ash (Fraxinus excelsior) is threatened by the invasive ascomycete Hymenoscyphus fraxineus originating from Asia. Ash leaf tissues serve as a route for shoot infection but also as a sporulation substrate for this pathogen. Knowledge of the leaf niche partitioning by indigenous fungi and H. fraxineus is needed to understand the fungal community receptiveness to the invasion. We subjected DNA extracted from unwashed and washed leaflets of healthy and diseased European ash to PacBio sequencing of the fungal ITS1-5.8S-ITS2 rDNA region. Leaflets from co-inhabiting rowan trees (Sorbus aucuparia) served as a reference. The overlap in leaflet mycobiomes between ash and rowan was remarkably high, but unlike in rowan, in ash leaflets the sequence read proportion, and the qPCR-based DNA amount estimates of H. fraxineus increased vigorously towards autumn, concomitant with a significant decline in overall fungal richness. The niche of ash and rowan leaves was dominated by epiphytic propagules (Vishniacozyma yeasts, the dimorphic fungus Aureobasidion pullulans and the dematiaceous hyphomycete Cladosporium ramotenellum and H. fraxineus), and endophytic thalli of biotrophs (Phyllactinia and Taphrina species), the indigenous necrotroph Venturia fraxini and H. fraxineus. Mycobiome comparison between healthy and symptomatic European ash leaflets revealed no significant differences in relative abundance of H. fraxineus, but A. pullulans was more prevalent in symptomatic trees. The impacts of host specificity, spatiotemporal niche partitioning, species carbon utilization profiles and life cycle traits are discussed to understand the ecological success of H. fraxineus in Europe. Further, the inherent limitations of different experimental approaches in the profiling of foliicolous fungi are addressed.

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Because of generally small log piles, loading forwarders during thinning is time consuming. The Assortment Grapple, an innovative grapple with an extra pair of claws which facilitates the handling of two assortments during one loading crane cycle, has been designed to decrease forwarders’ loading time consumption. A standardized experiment was performed in a virtual thinning stand using a machine simulator with the objectives to form guidelines for working with the Assortment Grapple and to analyse its development potential. Four experienced operators participated in the study. According to the results, the Assortment Grapple’s accumulating function is beneficial only when there are no remaining trees between piles loaded during the same crane cycle. In such cases, none of participating operators lost time, and 3 of 4 operators saved time notably. The problem with the remaining trees is the extra time required to steer the crane tip around them. Therefore, a harvester should place those log piles that are later to be forwarded together in the same space with no remaining trees between the piles. Furthermore, we recommend that the Assortment Grapple’s usability will be improved by adding an own rocker switch on the forwarder’s controls to command the extra claws.

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Forest inventories provide predictions of stand means on a routine basis from models with auxiliary variables from remote sensing as predictors and response variables from field data. Many forest inventory sampling designs do not afford a direct estimation of the among-stand variance. As consequence, the confidence interval for a model-based prediction of a stand mean is typically too narrow. We propose a new method to compute (from empirical regression residuals) an among-stand variance under sample designs that stratify sample selections by an auxiliary variable, but otherwise do not allow a direct estimation of this variance. We test the method in simulated sampling from a complex artificial population with an age class structure. Two sampling designs are used (one-per-stratum, and quasi systematic), neither recognize stands. Among-stand estimates of variance obtained with the proposed method underestimated the actual variance by 30-50%, yet 95% confidence intervals for a stand mean achieved a coverage that was either slightly better or at par with the coverage achieved with empirical linear best unbiased estimates obtained under less efficient two-stage designs.

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Policy mixes (i.e. the total structure of policy processes, strategies, and instruments) are complex constructs that can quickly become incoherent, inconsistent, and incomprehensive. This is amplified when the policy mix strives to meet multiple objectives simultaneously, such as in the case of large carnivore policy mixes. Building on Rogge and Reichardt's analytical framework for the analysis of policy mixes, we compare the policy mixes of Norway, Sweden, Finland, the Netherlands, Germany (specifically Saxony and Bavaria), and Spain (specifically Castilla y León). The study shows that the large carnivore policy mixes in the case countries show signs of lacking vertical and horizontal coherence in the design of policy processes, weak consistency between objectives and designated policy instruments, and, as a consequence, lacking comprehensiveness. We conclude that creating consistent, coherent, and comprehensive policy mixes that build on multiple objectives requires stepping away from sectorized policy development, toward a holistic, systemic approach, strong collaborative structures across policy boundaries and regions, the inclusion of diverse stakeholders, and constant care and attention to address all objectives simultaneously rather than in isolation.

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The strawberry blossom weevil (SBW), Anthonomus rubi, is a major pest in strawberry fields throughout Europe. Traps baited with aggregation pheromone are used for pest monitoring. However, a more effective lure is needed. For a number of pests, it has been shown that the attractiveness of a pheromone can be enhanced by host plant volatiles. The goal of this study was to explore floral volatile blends of different strawberry species (Fragaria x ananassa and Fragaria vesca) to identify compounds that might be used to improve the attractiveness of existing lures for SBW. Floral emissions of F. x a. varieties Sonata, Beltran, Korona, and of F. vesca, were collected by both solid-phase microextraction (SPME) and dynamic headspace sampling on Tenax. Analysis by gas chromatography/mass spectrometry showed the floral volatiles of F. x ananassa. and F. vesca were dominated by aromatic compounds and terpenoids, with 4-methoxybenzaldehyde (p-anisaldehyde) and α-muurolene the major compounds produced by the two species, respectively. Multi-dimensional scaling analyses separated the blends of the two species and explained differences between F. vesca genotypes and, to some degree, variation between F. x ananassa varieties In two-choice behavioral tests, SBW preferred odors of flowering strawberry plants to those of non-flowering plants, but weevils did not discriminate between odors from F. x ananassa and F. vesca flowering plants. Adding blends of six synthetic flower volatiles to non-flowering plants of both species increased the preference of SBW for these over the plants alone. When added individually to non-flowering plants, none of the components increased the preference of SBW, indicating a synergistic effect. However, SBW responded to 1,4-dimethoxybenzene, a major component of volatiles from F. viridis, previously found to synergize the attractiveness of the SBW aggregation pheromone in field studies.

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Understanding the role plant species play on ecosystems is fundamental for restoration programs, particularly in semi-arid areas because land-use intensification combined with critical droughts has resulted in widespread desertification. Here, we evaluate 15 species of native trees for restoring degraded areas in the Brazilian semi-arid region on the basis of the suitability of their functional traits to ecosystem multifunctionality. To do so, we performed a short-term greenhouse experiment using saplings to estimate the importance of above- and below-ground traits in modulating soil and water quality. Above-ground traits yielded stronger effects on soil and water quality than below-ground traits. Above-ground biomass held the strongest positive effect on ecosystem multifunctionality, being the most beneficial attribute for the soil functions assessed. Thus, plants holding high biomass production should be preferentially selected for restoration in semi-arid regions.

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Soy protein concentrate (SPC) is a key ingredient in fish feed and most of it originates from Brazil. However, the Brazilian soy industry has reportedly resulted in significant environmental problems including deforestation. Consequently, new sources for protein are investigated and protein extracted from farmed seaweed is considered an alternative. Therefore, we investigate how seaweed protein product (SPP) can compete against SPC as a protein ingredient for fish feed. The study uses the positioning matrix, cost analyses involving the power law, and uncertainty analysis using Monte Carlo simulations, and key research challenges are identified. The initial finding is that, with the emerging seaweed industry, the cost of producing SPP is too high to be competitive for fish feed applications. To overcome this challenge, two solutions are investigated. First, substantial investments in cultivation and processing infrastructure are needed to accomplish scale, and a break-even scale of 65,000 tonnes is suggested. The second but more promising avenue, preferably in combination with the former, is the extraction of seaweed protein and high-value seaweed components. With mannitol and laminaran as co-products to the SPP, there is a 25–30% probability of a positive bottom line. Researches on extraction processes are therefore a necessity to maximize the extraction of value-added ingredients. Over time, it is expected that the competitive position of SPP will improve due to the upscaling of the volume of production as well as better biorefinery processes.

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1. Habitat fragmentation may affect species distributions through, for example, altered resource availability and shifts in species interactions. Fragmentation by roads has had negative impacts on Fennoscandian alpine ecosystems, with reduction of habitats and connectivity for alpine species. Concurrently, infrastructure development causes influx of subsidies through roadkills and litter, which may facilitate expansion of boreal scavenging species, such as the red fox Vulpes vulpes, which may intensify negative interactions with alpine species. Hence, understanding the impact of subsidies within marginal alpine areas is imperative for successful conservation and management of particularly vulnerable alpine species. 2. We used snow tracking and camera traps in three alpine tundra areas in Norway to investigate whether the presence of boreal scavengers was positively associated with highways during winter, and if this contrasted the pattern of a critically endangered alpine species, the Arctic fox Vulpes lagopus. In summer, artificial nests were used to assess whether predation risk was related to proximity to highways. 3. During winter, the occurrence of red foxes was higher close to highways and decreased with increasing distance to highways, while the arctic fox showed no discernible pattern. Red fox occurrence increased with the number of edible items of anthropogenic origin located along highways, whereas arctic fox occurrence decreased. 4. The overall predation risk of artificial nests during summer was high (>31.2%) and increased with proximity to the highway in the area with highest traffic volume. 5. Synthesis and applications. Highways crossing alpine areas may attract boreal scavengers, possibly connected to increased access to subsidies of anthropogenic origin. Litter and food waste dominated available subsidies along highways in our study, and prevailing mitigating measures directed at reducing roadkill and movement restrictions may not be applicable to reduce negative effects of littering. We recommend actions focusing on informational campaigns, improved garbage disposal facilities and routines, and imposing fines for littering, to reduce negative impacts on vulnerable species. This is likely needed to achieve goals of ‘no impact’ from the physical loss of habitats due to road development.

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The UK exited the EU on 31 January 2020, with a transition period agreed as part of the Withdrawal Agreement. During this transition period the UK and the EU will decide on their future trading relationship. No matter what form this relationship takes, there will be disturbances to agri‐food markets. This study analyses four different scenarios with increasing barriers to trade, ranging from a very close relationship similar to the European Economic Area to a distant relationship in which the UK and EU trade on Most Favoured Nation terms, using the EU focused global agricultural sector model CAPRI. In the UK, food prices will increase in all scenarios, making consumers in the UK the biggest losers. Only in a free trade agreement scenario does the UK show an unambiguous positive net welfare gain in just the agri‐food sector. In the case of the European Economic Area scenario, which assumes continued access to the single market, the net welfare impact would depend on the size of the UK’s continued contribution to the EU. In the EU, declining food prices would benefit consumers but the sum of the loss in farmers’ incomes and the UK’s EU CAP contribution would be much greater than the consumer’s gain. These impacts in agricultural markets under different future trade arrangements will also be influenced by the UK’s agricultural policy changes in direct payments as well as by possible further UK trade liberalisation after the end of the transition period.

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Berries of genus Vaccinium are rich in flavonoids and proanthocyanidins (PAs). We studied the PA composition and biosynthesis in bilberry (Vaccinium myrtillus L.) tissues and during fruit development. Soluble PAs, analyzed by UHPLC–MS/MS, were most abundant in stem and rhizome with the mean PA polymerization level varying between 4 and 6 in all tissues. Both A- and B-type PAs were present in all tissues. Procyanidin subunits were more common than prodelphinidin subunits in PAs. During fruit ripening, the amount of procyanidin subunits decreased while prodelphinidin subunits and F3′5′H expression increased, indicating a shift in biosynthesis toward the delphinidin branch of the flavonoid pathway. Epicatechin was the most abundant flavan-3-ol in all tissues. Expression of ANR and three isolated LAR genes, analyzed by qRT-PCR, showed connection to accumulation of PAs and flavan-3-ols biosynthesized from different flavonoid branches. Insoluble PAs accumulated during berry development, suggesting that PAs are not recycled after biosynthesis.

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Ornamental jewelweed (Impatiens glandulifera Royle) is an alien invasive plant in Europe. This annual plant often grows in riparian habitats where herbicides are prohibited. Several studies have reported the negative effect on ecosystem and ecosystem services by this species. However, limited research is published on control measures and the aim of our study was to explore use of hot water and cutting to control I. glandulifera. A lab experiment showed that the lethal water temperature for seed was between 45 and 50 C. In a pot experiment with seeds in soil, emergence of I. glandulifera was reduced by 78% and 93% compared with the untreated control with volumes of hot water (80 C) of 7.2 and 14.5 L m−2, respectively. When treatments were conducted on relatively tall plants (almost 60 cm) in late June, hot water gave significantly better control than cutting. Compared with an untreated control, I. glandulifera cover was reduced by 97% and 79% after hot water and cutting, respectively. Application of hot water to smaller (<40 cm) and less developed plants (BBCH 12–13) in early June and cutting of plants with visible flower buds (mid-July) led to no significant difference in cover. Compared with an untreated control, I. glandulifera cover was reduced by 99% (cut below first node) and 91% (hot water and cut above first node). When relatively tall plants (almost 60 cm) were treated, hot water use was high (31.1 L m−2) and required twice as many work hours (4.8 min m−2) as cutting (2.4 min m−2). When smaller plants (<40 cm) were targeted, work hours and hot water use were reduced to 2.1 min m−2 and 13.7 L m−2, respectively.

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The diploid Celina/QTee® (‘Colorée de Juillet’ × ‘Williams’), one of the most promising pear cultivars developed by the Norwegian breeding program Graminor, was launched in 2010. In Norway, the flowering is medium to late, while the fruits ripen in the beginning of September. The fruits are attractive with an intense red blush (50%) on a green background. Although, ‘Celina’ is cultivated in the most climatically suitable regions for fruit cultivation, present in Norway, unfavorable environmental conditions for pear pollination can have a very negative effect on fruit set and consequent yield. The aim of this study was to determine the S-alleles of ‘Celina’, as well as its frequently used pollinizers, and, through paternity testing of ‘Celina’ seeds, give a recommendation regarding the most important pollinizers of this pear cultivar. In order to accomplish this, ‘Celina’ and its potential pollinizers were all S-genotyped. After harvest, seeds collected from ‘Celina’ fruit in 2017 and 2018 were genotyped using eleven microsatellite markers. Genomic DNA was also extracted from leaf material collected from ‘Celina’, as well as from five pear cultivars used as pollinizers in the three examined orchards, and analyzed using the same marker set. Subsequently a simple sequence repeat (SSR) database was constructed and used for gene assignment analyses with the aim of quantifying pollen donor contribution from individual pollinizers. The obtained results indicate that ‘Anna’, the only examined pollinizer that was fully cross-compatible with ‘Celina’, together with ‘Fritjof’, the genotype which had the highest flowering overlap with ‘Celina’, proved to be the most successful pollinizers across all seasons and orchards. Although both cultivars were ubiquitous in the examined orchards, either as planted trees or as branches introduced during the flowering period, they were the most abundant pollinizers in only one orchard each. It is therefore possible to conclude that pollinizer abundance has a secondary significance in pollinizer success within investigated ‘Celina’ orchards.

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Ongoing anthropogenic climate change alters the local climatic conditions to which species may be adapted. Information on species’ climatic requirements and their intraspecific variation is necessary for predicting the effects of climate change on biodiversity. We used a climatic gradient to test whether populations of two allopatric varieties of an arctic seashore herb (Primula nutans ssp. finmarchica) show adaptation to their local climates and how a future warmer climate may affect them. Our experimental set-up combined a reciprocal translocation within the distribution range of the species with an experiment testing the performance of the sampled populations in warmer climatic conditions south of their range. We monitored survival, size, and flowering over four growing seasons as measures of performance and, thus, proxies of fitness. We found that both varieties performed better in experimental gardens towards the north. Interestingly, highest up in the north, the southern variety outperformed the northern one. Supported by weather data, this suggests that the climatic optima of both varieties have moved at least partly outside their current range. Further warming would make the current environments of both varieties even less suitable. We conclude that Primula nutans ssp. finmarchica is already suffering from adaptational lag due to climate change, and that further warming may increase this maladaptation, especially for the northern variety. The study also highlights that it is not sufficient to run only reciprocal translocation experiments. Climate change is already shifting the optimum conditions for many species and adaptation needs also to be tested outside the current range of the focal taxon in order to include both historic conditions and future conditions.

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Quorum quenching (QQ) blocks bacterial cell-to-cell communication (i.e., quorum sensing), and is a promising antipathogenic strategy to control bacterial infection via inhibition of virulence factor expression and biofilm formation. QQ enzyme AiiO-AIO6 from Ochrobactrum sp. M231 has several excellent properties and shows biotherapeutic potential against important bacterial pathogens of aquatic species. AiiO-AIO6 can be secretory expressed in Bacillus subtilis via a non-classical secretion pathway. To improve AiiO-AIO6 production, four intracellular protease-deletion mutants of B. subtilis 1A751 were constructed by individually knocking out the intracellular protease-encoding genes (tepA, ymfH, yrrN and ywpE). The AiiO-AIO6 expression plasmid pWB-AIO6BS was transformed into the B. subtilis 1A751 and its four intracellular protease-deletion derivatives. Results showed that all recombinant intracellular protease-deletion derivatives (BSΔtepA, BSΔymfH, BSΔyrrN and BSΔywpE) had a positive impact on AiiO-AIO6 production. The highest amount of AiiO-AIO6 extracellular production of BSΔywpE in shake flask reached 1416.47 U/mL/OD600, which was about 121% higher than that of the wild-type strain. Furthermore, LC–MS/MS analysis of the degrading products of 3-oxo-C8-HSL by purification of AiiO-AIO6 indicated that AiiO-AIO6 was an AHL-lactonase which hydrolyzes the lactone ring of AHLs. Phylogenetic analysis showed that AiiO-AIO6 was classified as a member of the α/β hydrolase family with a conserved “nucleophile-acid-histidine” catalytic triad. In summary, this study showed that intracellular proteases were responsible for the reduced yields of heterologous proteins and provided an efficient strategy to enhance the extracellular production of AHL lactonase AiiO-AIO6.

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According to the World Health Organization a diet high in vegetables may reduce the risk of coronary heart diseases, stroke, and certain types of cancer. In addition, vegetables have lower carbon footprints than most other foods. The main objective in this paper is to find drivers behind vegetable consumption, with emphasis on health and environmental motivation. We used the theory of planned behavior together with direct acyclic graphs as a theoretical basis. The empirical analysis applied the graded response model and bounded beta regression with survey data from 2019. The main results show that health attitude is a stronger motivator for vegetable consumption than environmental attitudes.

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Spring greening has been widely observed across the Northern Hemisphere (NH) using a remotely sensed vegetation index (e.g., the normalized difference vegetation index, NDVI). However, there is still a debate on the ecological effects of spring greening on seasonal carbon and water budgets. This study jointly investigated the concurrent and lagged effects of spring greening on carbon gain (gross primary productivity, GPP) and water loss (evapotranspiration, ET) in the summer-active ecosystems at mid and high latitudes of NH using remote sensing and multimodel ensemble data during 1982–2013. The results showed that the collective promotion of spring greening to concurrent GPP and ET is widespread despite variations in magnitude and significance. Both beneficial and adverse lagged effects of spring greening on summer GPP commonly appear with an obvious spatial heterogeneity and difference among climate-plant types. However, the expected significant suppression of spring greening to summer GPP was rarely observed even in the areas where spring ET was significantly promoted by spring greening. Nevertheless, when drought was taken into account, the response patterns of spring water use to spring greening varied to some extent, and the adverse lagged effect of spring greening to summer GPP appeared or strengthened in some regions, especially during the years with dry summer. Given the predicted warming of the climate and more frequent climatic extremes, the adverse effect of spring greening should be given more attention.

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Harvest can disrupt wildlife populations by removing adults with naturally high survival. This can reshape sociospatial structure, genetic composition, fitness, and potentially affect evolution. Genetic tools can detect changes in local, fine-scale genetic structure (FGS) and assess the interplay between harvest-caused social and FGS in populations. We used data on 1614 brown bears, Ursus arctos, genotyped with 16 microsatellites, to investigate whether harvest intensity (mean low: 0.13 from 1990 to 2005, mean high: 0.28 from 2006 to 2011) caused changes in FGS among matrilines (8 matrilines; 109 females ≥4 years of age), sex-specific survival and putative dispersal distances, female spatial genetic autocorrelation, matriline persistence, and male mating patterns. Increased harvest decreased FGS of matrilines. Female dispersal distances decreased, and male reproductive success was redistributed more evenly. Adult males had lower survival during high harvest, suggesting that higher male turnover caused this redistribution and helped explain decreased structure among matrilines, despite shorter female dispersal distances. Adult female survival and survival probability of both mother and daughter were lower during high harvest, indicating that matriline persistence was also lower. Our findings indicate a crucial role of regulated harvest in shaping populations, decreasing differences among “groups,” even for solitary-living species, and potentially altering the evolutionary trajectory of wild populations. anthropogenic, dispersal, hunting, male mating, maternal, predator, survival

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There is a need for new solutions in wood protection against marine wood borers and termites in Europe. A new solution could be the esterification of wood with sorbitol and citric acid (SCA) since these are inexpensive and readily available feedstock chemicals and have shown protective properties against fungal wood degradation in earlier studies and prevented macrobiological degradation, as shown in this study. Protection of wood products in the marine environment lacks available wood preservatives that are approved for marine applications. Termite infestation is opposed mainly by biocide treatments of wood. Several wood modification systems show high resistance against both marine borers and subterranean termites. However, the existing commercialized wood modification products are costly. Both macrobiological forms of degradation represent a great threat for most European wood species, which are rapidly and severely degraded if not properly treated. This study investigated esterified wood in standard field trials against marine wood borers, and against subterranean termites in laboratory trials in a no-choice and choice test. The treatment showed good resistance against wood borers in the marine environment after one season and against subterranean termites in the laboratory after eight weeks. The low termite survival rate (SR) in the no-choice test during the first week of testing indicates a mode of action that is incomparable to other wood modification treatments.

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The study aimed to explore whether an increase in bunker silage density obtained by turning to a heavier packing machine than a farm size tractor would reduce losses and improve grass silage quality and aerobic stability. At each of three harvests, two bunkers were packed with either a 14.5 t wheel loader (WL) or an 8.3 t tractor (T). For comparison with the bunker silages, silage was produced simultaneously in round bales with high and low chamber pressure and wrapped immediately or after delay, and in laboratory silos. Compaction with WL increased silage dry matter (DM) density by 9 % compared with T, from 204 to 222 kg DM/m3. On average for three harvests, DM recovered as silage, or lost, was almost identical for the two packing treatments, with 870 g/kg of harvested DM recovered as feed offered to animals, 55 g/kg as wasted silage, and 75 g/kg as invisible losses due to respiration, effluent, fermentation and aerobic deterioration. However, in the harvest with lowest crop DM content, 266 g/kg, invisible DM losses with WL exceeded losses with T by 46 g/kg, of which the main portion was assumed to be caused by more effluent squeezed out by the WL. In the harvest with highest crop DM, 332 g/kg, invisible DM losses with T exceeded losses with WL by 43 g/kg, of which the main portion was assumed to be caused by poorer compaction with T, and therefore higher respiration and aerobic deterioration losses. Wasted silage DM was lower in bales than in bunkers (P = 0.004). The proportion of offered silage DM from poorly compacted bales sealed after delay (867 g/kg) was similar to that of bunkers, whereas the proportion of offered silage DM from well compacted and immediately sealed bales (963 g/kg) was similar to that of laboratory silos. Significant increases in protein bound in the neutral detergent and acid detergent fiber fractions were found in bales sealed after delay where temperatures had rised to 47 °C at wrapping. Similar levels of fiber bound protein were found in bunker silage, suggesting that they were also heated during filling. Spot samples from bunker silo shoulders were more infected by yeasts, moulds and Clostridium tyrobutyricum than samples from mid in bunkers and from bales. No differences in losses, silage composition or aerobic stability were observed between bunker silo packing with WL or T on average over three harvests.

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This paper uses Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA) to evaluate how the technical efficiency of forest harvesting operations is influenced by terrain conditions and forest attributes, in addition to exploring the existence of other influencing factors. To this end, 643 shift-level observations of harvesting operations on 253 distinct harvested sites were used. The aim of this study is to highlight the harvester’s ability to maximize the outputs, represented by the number of assortments for various tree species, given inputs such as harvest volume, harvest time for various tree species, and distance traveled by the harvester. Operational environment variables such as harvest, or decision-making unit (DMU) size, shape, and terrain characteristics were included. We found large variations in efficiency scores, and that inefficient harvest operations could theoretically be improved by reducing input by up to ca. 80%. A second stage regression estimation was applied to identify which factors significantly affected inefficiency. It was found that the inefficiency decreases with increasing stem-volume for pine and broadleaves, increasing stand density, and increasing share of pulpwood and non-marketable timber, while it increases with the number of logs produced per tree (in broadleaves). Inefficiency increases also with an increasing ratio of actual travel distance to minimal travel distance. The study shows how adopting DEA methods in forest operations might be used in combining efficiency analysis and environmental factors, by identifying and measuring inefficiency due to, for example, difficult terrain.

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The quantification of forests available for wood supply (FAWS) is essential for decision-making with regard to the maintenance and enhancement of forest resources and their contribution to the global carbon cycle. The provision of harmonized forest statistics is necessary for the development of forest associated policies and to support decision-making. Based on the National Forest Inventory (NFI) data from 13 European countries, we quantify and compare the areas and aboveground dry biomass (AGB) of FAWS and forest not available for wood supply (FNAWS) according to national and reference definitions by determining the restrictions and associated thresholds considered at country level to classify forests as FAWS or FNAWS. FAWS represent between 75 and 95 % of forest area and AGB for most of the countries in this study. Economic restrictions are the main factor limiting the availability of forests for wood supply, accounting for 67 % of the total FNAWS area and 56 % of the total FNAWS AGB, followed by environmental restrictions. Profitability, slope and accessibility as economic restrictions, and protected areas as environmental restrictions are the factors most frequently considered to distinguish between FAWS and FNAWS. With respect to the area of FNAWS associated with each type of restriction, an overlap among the restrictions of 13.7 % was identified. For most countries, the differences in the FNAWS areas and AGB estimates between national and reference definitions ranged from 0 to 5 %. These results highlight the applicability and reliability of a FAWS reference definition for most of the European countries studied, thereby facilitating a consistent approach to assess forests available for supply for the purpose of international reporting.

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Spatiotemporal variation in natural selection is expected, but difficult to estimate. Pollinator‐mediated selection on floral traits provides a good system for understanding and linking variation in selection to differences in ecological context. We studied pollinator‐mediated selection in five populations of Dalechampia scandens (Euphorbiaceae) in Costa Rica and Mexico. Using a nonlinear path‐analytical approach, we assessed several functional components of selection, and linked variation in pollinator‐mediated selection across time and space to variation in pollinator assemblages. After correcting for estimation error, we detected moderate variation in net selection on two out of four blossom traits. Both the opportunity for selection and the mean strength of selection decreased with increasing reliability of cross‐pollination. Selection for pollinator attraction was consistently positive and stronger on advertisement than reward traits. Selection on traits affecting pollen transfer from the pollinator to the stigmas was strong only when cross‐pollination was unreliable and there was a mismatch between pollinator and blossom size. These results illustrate how consideration of trait function and ecological context can facilitate both the detection and the causal understanding of spatiotemporal variation in natural selection.

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The reliability of short-term weather forecast provided by COSMO model in simulating reference evapotranspiration (ET0) was evaluated in 7 study sites distributed in 4 countries (Italy, Norway, Romania and Spain). The main objective of the study was to assess the optimal scenario for calculating ET0, using the FAO-56 Penman-Monteith (PM) equation, by separately considering the accuracy in the use of “past” and “forecast” data input. Firstly, each forecasted variable (air temperature, Tair; relative humidity, RH; wind speed, u2; solar radiation, Rs) and ET0 were compared with in situ observations at hourly and daily scales. Moreover the seasonality effect in the forecast performance was evaluated. Secondly, simulated ET0 were computed every three days with: (i) a “past scenario” that used the observed data input measured in situ during the previous three days, (ii) a “forecast scenario” that used the forecasted input variables for the next three days; and compared with (iii) actual ET0 obtained from the in situ measured data. A general good agreement was found between observed and forecasted agro-meteorological parameters at the different explored time-scales. The best performance was obtained for Tair and Rs, followed by RH and u2. Globally, the comparison between ET0 from the measured and forecasted data input showed high performance, with R2 and RMSE of 0.90 and 0.68 mm d−1. ET0 simulations resulted more accurate using the “forecast scenario” (1.7% overestimation), rather than using the “past scenario” (2.6% underestimation). These results open promising perspectives in the use of forecast for ET0 assessment for different agriculture practices and particularly for irrigation scheduling under water scarcity conditions.

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Climate change in the Nordic countries is projected to lead to both wetter and warmer seasons. This, in combination with associated vegetation changes and increased animal migration, increases the potential incidence of tick-borne diseases (TBD) where already occurring, and emergence in new places. At the same time, vegetation and animal management influence tick habitat and transmission risks. In this paper, we review the literature on Ixodes ricinus, the primary vector for TBD. Current and projected distribution changes and associated disease transmission risks are related to climate constraints and climate change, and this risk is discussed in the specific context of reindeer management. Our results indicate that climatic limitations for vectors and hosts, and environmental and societal/institutional conditions will have a significant role in determining the spreading of climate-sensitive infections (CSIs) under a changing climate. Management emerges as an important regulatory “tool” for tick and/or risk for disease transfer. In particular, shrub encroachment, and pasture and animal management, are important. The results underscore the need to take a seasonal view of TBD risks, such as (1) grazing and migratory (host) animal presence, (2) tick (vector) activity, (3) climate and vegetation, and (4) land and animal management, which all have seasonal cycles that may or may not coincide with different consequences of climate change on CSI migration. We conclude that risk management must be coordinated across the regions, and with other land-use management plans related to climate mitigation or food production to understand and address the changes in CSI risks.

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The growing interest in precision livestock farming is prompted by a desire to understand the basic behavioural needs of the animals and optimize the contribution of each animal. The aim of this study was to develop a system that automatically generated individual animal behaviour and localization data in sheep. A sensor-fusion-system tracking individual sheep position and detecting sheep standing/lying behaviour was proposed. The mean error and standard deviation of sheep position performed by the ultra-wideband location system was 0.357 ± 0.254 m, and the sensitivity of the sheep standing and lying detection performed by infrared radiation cameras and three-dimenional computer vision technology were 98.16% and 100%, respectively. The proposed system was able to generate individual animal activity reports and the real-time detection was achieved. The system can increase the convenience for animal behaviour studies and monitoring of animal welfare in the production environment.

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Understanding how populations are structured in space and time is a central question in evolutionary biology. Parasites and their hosts are assumed to evolve together, however, detailed understanding of mechanisms leading to genetic structuring of parasites and their hosts are lacking. As a parasite depends on its host, studying the genetic structure of both parasite and host can reveal important insights into these mechanisms. Here, genetic structure of the monogenean parasite Gyrodactylus thymalli and its host the European grayling (Thymallus thymallus) was investigated in 10 tributaries draining into the large Lake Mjøsa in Norway. The population genetic structure of spawning grayling was studied using microsatellite genotyping, while G. thymalli was studied by sequencing a mitochondrial DNA gene (dehydrogenase subunit 5). Two main genetic clusters were revealed in grayling, one cluster comprising grayling from the largest spawning population, while the remaining tributaries formed the second cluster. For both taxa, some genetic differentiation was observed among tributaries, but there was no clear isolation-by-distance signature. The structuring was stronger for the host than for the parasite. These results imply that moderate to high levels of gene flow occur among the sub-populations of both taxa. The high parasite exchange among tributaries could result from a lack of strong homing behavior in grayling as well as interactions among individual fish outside of the spawning season, leading to frequent mixing of both host and parasite.

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Sheep farmers in areas with large carnivores experience economic loss, psychological stress, and perceived alienation from political processes. This can result in decisions that differ from those made by farmers in areas without large carnivores, possibly influencing the whole farming system. We used applications for farming subsidies to examine changes in sheep farming in Norway 1999 to 2017. Along the urbanrural dimension, we found a stronger decline in increasingly rural areas. The decline was furthermore larger inside regions used for the reintroduction of large carnivores than outside these regions. The observed decline in some regions was compensated by growth in central regions, outside carnivore prone areas, and on managed land where the sheep was protected from carnivores. The result complements studies of mental dispositions and decision processes aiming to explain how large carnivores and the carnivore management policy influence the farmers' attitudes and decisions, resulting in behaviors that effect larger social systems.

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This review compiles various literature studies on the environmental impacts associated with the processes of thermal modification of wood. In wood preservation field, the wood modification by heat is considered as an ecofriendly process due to the absence of any additional chemicals. However, it is challenging to find proper scientific and industrial data that support this aspect. There are still very few complete studies on the life cycle assessment (LCA) and even less studies on the environmental impacts related to wood heat treatment processes whether on a laboratory or on an industrial scales. This comprehensive review on environmental impact assessment emphasizes environmental categories such as dwindling of natural resources, cumulative energy intake, gaseous, solid and liquid emissions occurred by the thermal-treated wood industry. All literature-based data were collected for every single step of the process of wood thermal modification like resources, treatment process, transport and distribution, uses and end of life of treated wood products.

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Use of big bale silage and haylage can be difficult on farms where daily forage consumption is comparatively low as speed of deterioration of forage after bale opening may be faster than feed‐out rate. Production of smaller bales at harvest is possible, but expensive and work‐intensive. Therefore, a pilot study of rebaling forage stored in big bales to smaller bales was conducted. Three separate experiments were included, where microbial and chemical composition of silage and haylage was studied before and after rebaling. In Experiment III, residual big bale forage stored and opened together with rebaled forage was included. Results showed that rebaled haylage and silage had higher yeast counts compared to initial forage; however, residual bales in Experiment III had yeast counts similar to rebaled forage, indicating an effect of storage time rather than of rebaling. In Experiment II, mould counts were higher in rebaled compared to initial silage, but not in haylage. Chemical composition was similar in initial and rebaled forage except for ammonia‐N. In Experiment III, ammonia‐N was higher in rebaled compared to initial and residual forage and was the only chemical variable affected by rebaling. Bale temperature during aerobic storage followed ambient temperature until day 6–8 in Experiment I and until day 14 in Experiment III where ambient temperature was lower. In conclusion, rebaling can be done without large changes in chemical composition of the forage, but yeast and mould counts may be higher in rebaled forage, and this risk should be considered when using this procedure.

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The increasing use of seaweeds in European cuisine led to cultivation initiatives funded by the European Union. lactuca, commonly known as sea lettuce, is a fast growing seaweed in the North Atlantic that chefs are bringing into the local cuisine. Here, different strains of Arctic U. lactuca were mass-cultivated under controlled conditions for up to 10 months. We quantified various chemical constituents associated with both health benefits (carbohydrates, protein, fatty acids, minerals) and health risks (heavy metals). Chemical analyses showed that long-term cultivation provided biomass of consistently high food quality and nutritional value. Concentrations of macroelements (C, N, P, Ca, Na, K, Mg) and micronutrients (Fe, Zn, Co, Mn, I) were sufficient to contribute to daily dietary mineral intake. Heavy metals (As, Cd, Hg and Pb) were found at low levels to pose health risk. The nutritional value of Ulva in terms of carbohydrates, protein and fatty acids is comparable to some selected fruits, vegetables, nuts and grains.

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Understanding interactions between individual animals and their resources is fundamental to ecology. Agent-Based Models (ABMs) offer an opportunity to study how individuals move given the spatial distribution and characteristics of their resources. When contrasted with empirical individual-resource network data, ABMs can be a powerful method to detect the processes behind observed movement patterns, as they allow for a complete and quantitative analysis of the agent-to-environment relationships. Here we use the small-scale, within-patch movement of bumblebees (Bombus pascuorum) as a case study to demonstrate how ABMs can be combined with network statistics to provide a deeper understanding of the mechanisms behind the interactions between individuals and their resources. We build an ABM that explicitly simulates the influence of distance to the nearest flowering plant (allowing minimal energy expenditure and maximum time spent foraging), plant height and number of flower heads (as a proxy of food availability) on local foraging decisions of bumblebees. The relative importance of these three elements is determined using pattern-oriented modelling (POM), where we confront the network statistics (number of visited plants, number of interactions, nestedness and modularity) of a real B. pascuorum individual-resource network with the emergent patterns of our ABM. We also explore the model results using spatial analysis. The model is able to reproduce the observed network statistics. Despite the complex behaviour of bumblebees, our results show a surprisingly precise match between the structure of the simulated and empirical networks after adjusting a single model parameter controlling the importance of distance to the next plant visited. Our study illustrates the potential of combining field data, ABMs and individual-resource networks for evaluating small-scale, within-patch movement decisions to better understand animal movements in natural habitats. We discuss the benefits of our approach when compared to more classical statistical methods, and its ability to test various scenarios in a new or altered environment.

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The need to become more efficient in agriculture and the food industry exists parallel to the challenge of climate change. Meat and dairy production is the target of much scrutiny due to methane (CH4) emissions and global warming. On the other hand, it should be noted that two-thirds of the world’s agricultural land consists of pastures and permanent grasslands and is used for livestock grazing. This land is predominantly unsuitable for arable purposes but facilitates the production of high-quality human-edible protein in the form of ruminant animal-derived meat and milk. This makes a significant contribution to feeding the world’s population. There is a need to reduce CH4 emissions, however, and several approaches are being researched currently. Seaweeds are diverse plants containing bioactives that differ from their terrestrial counterparts and they are increasingly under investigation as a feed supplement for the mitigation of enteric CH4. Seaweeds are rich in bioactives including proteins, carbohydrates and to a lesser extent lipids, saponins, alkaloids and peptides. These bioactives could also play a role as feed ingredients to reduce enteric CH4. This review collates information on seaweeds and seaweed bioactives and their potential to impact on enteric CH4 emissions.

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Apples are an important source of bioactive compounds, especially mineral nutrients. Minerals (both macro- and micro-elements) are responsible for the functioning of the human body, and involved in the metabolism and production of carbohydrates, lipids, proteins, vitamins and enzymes. The objective of this study was to determine and compare the content of some minerals (K, P, Ca, Mg and Fe) of two different apple cultivars (‘Red Aroma Orelind’ and ‘Discovery’), both in peel and pulp, grown in organic and integrated production systems in western Norway in 2015. Samples of fruits were prepared by microwave digestion using an Ethos 1 microwave system. All analyses were performed in triplicate on a Thermo Scientific iCAP 6500 Duo ICP. The results showed that potassium was found in the largest quantity in both apple cultivars and in both management systems and average concentration was 944.3 µg g-1 of fresh weight (FW). Calcium was in second place with average of 180.6 µg g-1 FW. Both apple cultivars had largest amounts of both K and P (in peel and flesh) from organic production compared to fruits coming from the integrated production system. The cultivar ‘Red Aroma Orelind’ had a significantly higher level of Fe in organic fruits compared to integrated. The present study showed that the highest values of K/Ca, (K+Mg)/Ca and Mg/Ca were obtained from the cultivar ‘Discovery’ under organic production (both in peel and flesh). Regarding significantly higher concentrations of P, K, Mg, Fe and balanced mineral ratios in organic apples, it can be concluded that those fruits have higher quality, and are at lower risk of bitter pit when stored.

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Since the European pear (Pyrus communis L.) is a self-incompatible fruit species, synchrony and compatibility between female parts of the mother plant and male gametes from the pollen donor must be fulfilled. Besides pollination and fertilization, normal embryo and zygote development is one of the prerequisites for the satisfactory yields in pears. The main goal of this experiment was to investigate the functionality of embryo sacs and the embryo’s early stages of growth in relation to the fruit set of diploid (‘Celina’) and the triploid (‘Ingeborg’) pear cultivars under specific Norwegian climatic conditions. For this purpose, flowers were collected at the beginning of flowering, and on the third, sixth, ninth, and twelfth days after the beginning of this phenophase for two consecutive years. Ovaries were dehydrated, embedded in paraffin wax, sectioned, stained, and observed under the light microscope. In the analyzed cultivars, results showed different tendencies in embryo sac development and degradation processes, in both experimental years, which is probably due to the genetic background of the examined cultivars. Also, fertilization success and fruit set were higher in the second year of study due to the higher average temperature during the flowering period. Diploid cultivar ‘Celina’ showed much better adaptation to high temperatures in relation to triploid cultivar ‘Ingeborg’.

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The aim of this study was to evaluate the thinning efficacy of metamitron (Brevis®) as fruitlet thinner compared to ammonium thiosulphate (ATS) and ethephon (Cerone) as flower thinning agents to ‘Rubinstep’ apple. The thinning efficacy of the flower thinning agents was compared to different timings (8-10 and 12-14 mm fruitlet diameters) and dosages (165 and 330 ppm) of the fruitlet thinner metamitron at the experimental farm at Nibio Ullensvang, western Norway (60°19’8.03”N; 6°39’14.31”E) in 2018. Untreated trees and trees manually thinned after June drop were used as reference treatments. Fruit set, yield data and fruit quality parameters for each treatment were recorded. None of the chemical thinning treatments resulted in a significant reduction in the final number of fruits and yield tree-1. Crop load of the untreated trees was almost twice the target crop load of the hand-thinned trees. Ammonium thiosulphate (ATS) was the only chemical thinning treatment that significantly increased fruit weight above the untreated trees, but to a lesser extent than achieved by hand thinning. Qualitative traits of ‘Rubinstep’ apples (ground and over colour, firmness, starch index and soluble solid contents were not correlated with the fruit set. Return bloom of the untreated trees was 50% of the bloom of the previous year. The ammonium thiosulphate-treated trees showed a significant higher percentage return bloom of 122%. Return bloom in all other treatments did not differ significantly from the untreated controls. However, the average values showed a clear trend of a decrease in return bloom in metamitron-treated trees in comparison with the untreated and hand-thinned trees. The exceptionally high levels of solar radiation in May 2018 and the excellent pollination conditions resulting in very high seed numbers fruit-1 are likely the reasons for the lack of thinning efficacy of Brevis®.

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Seedling blight caused by Sirococcus conigenus was recently reported on Norway spruce (Picea abies) from Norwegian forest nurseries. The inoculum source was found to be infected seeds. In a Petri dish assay, the fungicide fludioxonil + difenoconazole was, among other fungicides, found to inhibit mycelial growth of S. conigenus. This fungicide is formulated as a seed treatment and registered for cereals in Norway, and was chosen for an experiment to control S. conigenus on Norway spruce seeds. Samples from two naturally infected seed lots were treated with half, normal and double dose of the recommended rate for cereals. Together with untreated control samples, treated seeds were tested in the laboratory for efficacy against S. conigenus on potato dextrose agar (PDA) in Petri dishes and for germination potential on filter paper. We also recorded seed emergence in soil of one of the seed lots in a growth chamber and in a forest nursery. On agar, the fungus was not detected after seed treatment with fludioxonil + difenoconazole at any of the three dosages, but it was present in the control. Germination on filter paper and emergence in soil was high in both treated and untreated control seeds with no signs of detrimental effects from any of the three fungicide doses.

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Europe has a history rich in examples of successful and problematic introductions of trees with a native origin outside of Europe (non-native trees, NNT). Many international legal frameworks such as treaties and conventions and also the European Union have responded to the global concern about potential negative impacts of NNT that may become invasive in natural ecosystems. It is, however, national and regional legislation in particular that affects current and future management decisions in the forest sector and shapes the landscapes of Europe. We identified all relevant legal instruments regulating NNT, the different legal approaches and the regulatory intensity in 40 European countries (no microstates). Information on hard and effective soft law instruments were collected by means of a targeted questionnaire and consultation of international and national legislation information systems and databases. In total, 335 relevant legal instruments were in place in June/July 2019 to regulate the use of NNT in the investigated 116 geopolitical legal units (countries as well as sub-national regions with their own legislation). Countries and regions were empirically categorized according to ad hoc-defined legislation indicators. These indicators pay respect to the general bans on the introduction of non-native species, the generally allowed and prohibited NNT, approval mechanisms and specific areas or cases where NNT are restricted or prohibited. Our study revealed a very diverse landscape of legal frameworks across Europe, with a large variety of approaches to regulating NNT being pursued and the intensity of restriction ranging from very few restrictions on species choice and plantation surface area to the complete banning of NNT from forests. The main conclusion is that there is a clear need for more co-ordinated, science-based policies both at the local and international levels to enhance the advantages of NNT and mitigate potential negative effects.

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Individual age is an important element in models of population demographics, but the limitations of the methods used for age determination are not always clear. We used known-age data from moose (Alces alces), red deer (Cervus elaphus), semi-domestic reindeer (Rangifer tarandus tarandus) and Svalbard reindeer (Rangifer tarandus platyrhynchus) to evaluate the accuracy and repeatability of age estimated by cementum annuli analysis of longitudinally sectioned permanent incisors. Four observers with varying experience performed blind duplicate age estimation of 37 specimens from each cervid. The relationship between known age and estimated age was linear, except for Svalbard reindeer where a quadratic model gave a slightly better fit. After correcting for observer ID and animal ID, there was a slightly declining probability to assess the correct age with increasing age for moose, red deer and Svalbard reindeer. Across cervids and observers, estimated age equalled known age in 69% of all readings, while 95% age ± 1 year. Predicted probability of correct age assessment for experienced observers was 93% for red deer, 89% for Svalbard reindeer, 84% for moose and 73% for semi-domestic reindeer. Regardless of observer experience and cervid, there was a high agreement between repeated assessments of a given animal’s tooth sections. The accuracy varied between cervids but was generally higher for observers with former ageing experience with a given cervid. We conclude that the accuracy of estimated age using longitudinally sectioned incisors is generally high, and even more so if performed by observers with former ageing experience of a given species. To ensure consistency over time, a reference material from known-age individuals for each species analysed should be available for calibration and training of observers. Age determination . Cementumannuli analysis (CAA) . Moose . Red deer . Reindeer . Incremental layer

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Spruce-fir-beech mixed forests cover a large area in European mountain regions, with high ecological and socio-economic importance. As elevation-zone systems they are highly affected by climate change, which is modifying species growth patterns and productivity shifts among species. The extent to which associated tree species can access resources and grow asynchronously may affect their resistance and persistence under climate change. Intra-specific synchrony in annual tree growth is a good indicator of species specific dependence on environmental conditions variability. However, little attention has been paid to explore the role of the inter-specific growth asynchrony in the adaptation of mixed forests to climate change. Here we used a database of 1790 tree-ring series collected from 28 experimental plots in spruce-fir-beech mixed forests across Europe to explore how spatio-temporal patterns of the intra- and inter-specific growth synchrony relate to climate variation during the past century. We further examined whether synchrony in growth response to inter-annual environmental fluctuations depended on site conditions. We found that the inter-specific growth synchrony was always lower than the intra-specific synchrony, for both high (inter-annual fluctuations) and low frequency (mid- to long-term) growth variation, suggesting between species niche complementarity at both temporal levels. Intra- and inter-specific synchronies in inter-annual growth fluctuations significantly changed along elevation, being greater at higher elevations. Moreover, the climate warming likely induced temporal changes in synchrony, but the effect varied along the elevation gradient. The synchrony strongly intensified at lower elevations likely due to climate warming and drying conditions. Our results suggest that intra- and inter-specific growth synchrony can be used as an indicator of temporal niche complementarity among species. We conclude that spruce-fir-beech mixtures should be preferred against mono-specific forests to buffer climate change impacts in mountain regions.

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In Norway, strawberry producers use cereal straw mulching to prevent berries from contacting the soil and to control weeds. We hypothesized that organic matter such as straw mulch also favors the maintenance of predatory mites which visit strawberry plants at nighttime. We compared mite diversity in cereal straw exposed for different periods in strawberry fields and evaluated their possible migration to plants in two experiments with potted plants in 2019. An ‘Early season’ experiment compared no mulching (T1), oat straw mulch exposed in field since 2018 (T2), or 2017 (T3), while a ‘Mid-season’ experiment compared no mulching (T1), barley straw mulch from 2018 (T2), or a mix from 2017 and 2018 (T3). To provide edaphic predatory mites with a potential source of food, all plants were infested with two-spotted spider mite (Tetranychus urticae Koch). Results suggested that straw mulch facilitates the prevalence of predatory mites in strawberry fields. Most predatory mite visits were at night, confirming our initial hypothesis. Predominant nocturnal mites on leaves belonged to Melicharidae (Proctolaelaps sp.) (‘Early season’, T2), Blattisociidae (Lasioseius sp.) (‘Early and Mid-season’, T3) and Phytoseiidae (‘Mid-season’, T2). Parasitus consanguineus Oudemans & Voigts was the predominant species (‘Early season’, T3) at the base of plants. Anystidae were diurnal visitors only (‘Mid-season’, T2). Future studies should evaluate the predation potential of Proctolaelaps sp. and Lasioseius sp. on two-spotted spider mite and other strawberry pests.

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A greenhouse climate-crop yield model was adapted to include additional climate modification techniques suitable for enabling sustainable greenhouse management at high latitudes. Additions to the model were supplementary lighting, secondary heating and heat harvesting technologies. The model: 1) included the impact of different light sources on greenhouse air temperature and tomato production 2) included a secondary heating system 3) calculated the amount of harvested heat whilst lighting was used. The crop yield model was not modified but it was validated for growing tomato in a semi-closed greenhouse equipped with HPS lamps (top-lights) and LED (inter-lights) in Norway. The combined climate-yield model was validated with data from a commercial greenhouse in Norway. The results showed that the model was able to predict the air temperature with sufficient accuracy during the validation periods with Relative Root Mean Square Error <10%. Tomato yield was accurately simulated in the cases under investigation, yielding a final production difference between 0.7% and 4.3%. Lack of suitable data prevented validation of the heat harvest sub-model, but a scenario is presented calculating the maximum harvestable heat in an illuminated greenhouse. Given the cumulative energy used for heating, the total amount of heating pipe energy which could be fulfilled with the heat harvestable from the greenhouse air was around 50%. Given the overall results, the greenhouse climate(-crop yield) model modified and presented in this study is considered accurate enough to support decisions about investments at farm level and/or evaluate beforehand the possible consequences of environmental policies.

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Remediation using nanoparticles depends on proper documentation of safety aspects, one of which is their ecotoxicology. Ecotoxicology of nanoparticles has some special features: while traditional ecotoxicology aims at measuring possible negative effects of more or less soluble chemicals or dissolved elements, nanoecotoxicology aims at measuring the toxicity of particles, and its main focus is on effects that are unique to nano-sized particles, as compared to larger particles or solutes. One of the main challenges when testing the ecotoxicity of nanoparticles lies in maintaining stable and reproducible exposure conditions, and adapt these to selected test organisms and endpoints. Another challenge is to use test media that are relevant to the matrices to be treated. Testing of nanoparticles used for remediation, particularly red-ox-active Fe-based nanoparticles, should also make sure to exclude confounding effects of altered red-ox potential which are not nanoparticle-specific. Yet another unique aspect of nanoparticles used for remediation is considerations of ageing of nanoparticles in soil or water, leading to reduced toxicity over field-relevant time scales. This review discusses these and other aspects of how to design and interpret appropriate tests and use these in hazard descriptions for subsequent risk assessments.

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Increased anthropogenic nitrogen (N) inputs can alter the N cycle and affect forest ecosystem functions. The impact of increased N deposition depends among others on the ultimate fate of N in plant and soil N pools. Short-term studies (3-18 months) have shown that the organic soil layer was the dominant sink for N. However, longer time scales are needed to investigate the long-term fate of N. Therefore, the soils of four experimental forest sites across Europe were re-sampled similar to 2 decades after labelling with(15)N. The sites covered a wide range of ambient N deposition varying from 13 to 58 kg N ha(-1)year(-1). To investigate the effects of different N loads on(15)N recovery, ambient N levels were experimentally increased or decreased. We hypothesized that: (1) the mineral soil would become the dominant(15)N sink after 2 decades, (2) long-term increased N deposition would lead to lower(15)N recovery levels in the soil and (3) variables related to C dynamics would have the largest impact on(15)N recovery in the soil. The results show that large amounts of the added(15)N remain in the soil after 2 decades and at 2 out of 4 sites the(15)N recovery levels are higher in the mineral soil than in the organic soil. The results show no clear responses of the isotopic signature to the changes in N deposition. Several environmental drivers are identified as controlling factors for long-term(15)N recovery. Most drivers that significantly contribute to(15)N recovery are strongly related to the soil organic matter (SOM) content. These findings are consistent with the idea that much of the added(15)N is immobilized in the SOM. In the organic soil layer, we identify C stock, thickness of the organic layer, N-status and mean annual temperature of the forest sites as most important controlling factors. In the mineral soil we identify C stock, C content, pH, moisture content, bulk density, temperature, precipitation and forest stand age as most important controlling factors. Overall, our results show that these temperate forests are capable of retaining long-term increased N inputs preferably when SOM availability is high and SOM turnover and N availability are low.

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Food-caching animals can gain nutritional advantages by buffering seasonality in food availability, especially during times of scarcity. The wolverine (Gulo gulo) is a facultative predator that occupies environments of low productivity. As an adaptation to fluctuating Food availability, wolverines cache perishable food in snow, boulders, and bogs for short- and long-term storage. We studied caching behavior of 38 GPS-collared wolverines in four study areas in Scandinavia. By investigating clusters of GPS locations, we identified a total of 303 food caches from 17 male and 21 female wolverines.Wolverines cached food all year around, from both scavenging and predation events, and spaced their caches widely within their home range.Wolverines cached food items on average 1.1 km from the food source andmade between 1 and 6 caches per source.Wolverines cached closer to the source when scavenging carcasses killed by other large carnivores; this might be a strategy to optimize food gain when under pressure of interspecific competition.When caching, wolverines selected for steep and rugged terrain in unproductive habitat types or in forest, indicating a preference for less-exposed sites that can provide cold storage and/or protection against pilferage. The observed year-round investment in caching by Wolverines underlines the importance of food predictability for survival and reproductive success in this species. Increasing temperatures as a consequence of climate change may provide newchallenges for wolverines by negatively affecting the preservation of cached food and by increasing competition from pilferers that benefit from awarmer climate. It is however still not fully understood which consequences this may have for the demography and behavior of the wolverine.

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Calcareous grasslands are rich in biodiversity and thus receive much attention in nature conservation. In such grasslands, the formation of moss layers is perceived as a management problem. However, its impacts on the community level are complex, as not only inhibition but also facilitation of vascular plant recruitment occur. Possible filters of recruitment are shading by mosses, isolation from soil resources and the resulting desicc