Feeding and growth in the Antarctic collembolan Cryptopygus antarcticus

first_imgVariations in the rate of moulting and of faecal pellet production by Cryptopygus antarcticus (Willem), collected from Signy Island in the maritime Antarctic, were measured over temperatures of 0° to 20°C. Over the range 5° to 15°C total faecal pellet production between moults was similar; at 0°C there was little feeding activity, whilst mortality was high at 20°C. The temperature of maximum moulting frequency is lower for this species than for temperate Isotomidae, suggesting cold adaptation of its moulting behaviour. Growth of individual specimens at 10°C was measured from mandibles recovered from shed exuviae after each moult, using a linear relationship between body length and mandible length. At a body length of 1040-1134 μm, individuals either increased or decreased in size at subsequent moults. The results suggest that the minimum age of the largest specimens of Cryptopygus on Signy Island is probably 3-7 yrlast_img read more

Riding Club Commends Multichoice for Boosting Cycling Race

first_img“‘MultiChoice through its SuperSport channel has done a fantastic job in providing broadcast coverage for the competition. Inspite of the short notice, the SuperSport crew were on ground to cover the tournament.”According to the Marketing Manager, DStv, Chioma Afe, MultiChoice’s decision to partner with the Cycology Riding Club is based on its commitment to provide quality sports content to its subscribers in Nigeria and Africa. While noting that MultiChoice gave similar support to Copa Lagos Beach Soccer championship which has become a world class recognized beach football championship, Afe, said it was a great opportunity to support the maiden edition of the cycling competition.Proof of the company’s commitment to sport development can be seen through the sponsorship of the DStv Premier Basketball League, the revival of boxing in Nigeria through the GOtvBoxing Night competitions and the continuous support of the Nigerian Football Premier League.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram Organisers of the Lagos Criterium Cycling Championship have commended MultiChoice Nigeria; Nigeria’s leading video entertainment provider, for supporting the maiden edition of the cycling competition in Nigeria.Speaking at the end of the cycling competition which attracted over 200 cyclists across the country, Ladipo Soetan, Captain of Cycology Riding Club said MultiChoice’s immense support to the competition is a clear indication that it’s an organisation committed to sports development in Nigeria.last_img read more

CAFCC: Shafiu Mumuni hattrick secures Ashantigold passage to the next round

first_imgStreaming down the Len Clay right wing, arms spread out, mouth wide open; like a bird, Shafiu Mumuni was flying.The fans he’s speeding towards are agog with jubilation; one kick here, one random hug there. As Shafiu stopped, head gazing into the sky and arms wide open like the statue of Christ the Redeemer, in unison, the fans belted out “Shafiu! Shafiu! Shafiu!”.It was worship; worship of a hero, a savior, an icon. Those were the scenes that followed Shafiu’s 3rd goal, a hattrick in just 9 minutes, the fastest ever recorded by an Ashantigold player, and it was befitting that it came from Shafiu, a succulent finish at the near post.Mosibe in goal for Akonangui was dazed, hurt and “bleeding”. And you don’t even need Sarkodie fans to explain this to you. The red shirts of the befuddled Akonangui defenders was accurate metaphor.Ashantigold came into the game as favorites, having secured a 1-1 draw in the away leg a fortnight ago. But even the staunchest Aboakese, did not envisage the masterful start to the game.35 seconds after kick off, penalty to the Miners. Referee Abdoulaye Rhisa spotted a handball in the Akonangui area. Shafiu converted.Fans were still celebrating the opening goal when the second went in just 6 minutes later. Shafiu again, this time, showing great intelligence and awareness to capitalize on a defensive blunder to slot home after rounding the goalkeeper.When he completed his hattrick 3 minutes later, Shafiu’s star was shining, much brighter than the cloudy skies that brought a downpour in the second half, a half that was all about managing a result than chasing one.While many other many others deserve praise for an all round wonderfully executed game; coach Ricardo Da Rocha, Brazilian midfielder Marco Silva, Latif Anabila, the day truly belonged to Shafiu Mumuni.Shafiu Mumuni doesn’t often get talked about a lot. He doesn’t get linked to fancy moves to Asante Kotoko or Hearts of Oak, neither does he feature in the most ludicrous transfer stories every window. Not even in May, when he scored a hattrick and an own goal, in a 4-1 thrashing of Aduana Stars in the NC Special Competition, was he talked of in the transfer portals.But he will go down as one of the best goalscorers this great club has had. And this is the club that produced the likes of CK Akonnor and Augustine Arhinful.So Ashantigold match on. 3-0 winners on the day and 4-1 aggregate success over Akonangui of Equatorial Guinea has now set them up with a meeting with Moroccan side RS Berkane in the next stage of qualifying for the CAF Confederation Cup.Arguably, that will be a much higher test for Ricardo Da Rocha’s men. But with Shafiu on fire, any team can be extinguished.last_img read more

SA supports firm stance in Africa

first_img28 June 2005South Africa would support military action against Rwanda’s former Hutu-dominated militia, the Interahamwe, should the armed forces derail the peace process in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).In addition, the African Union’s Peace and Security Council recommends armed action to neutralise the militia, Deputy Foreign Minister Aziz Pahad told journalists in Pretoria this week.Pahad said the prospects of peace in the DRC would remain poor unless the Interahamwe problem was addressed.“If you don’t deal with the Interahamwe you will never achieve peace in the DRC”, Pahad said. “If political action does not work it would be important to take military action, and South Africa would fully support such an action.”Pahad said South Africa had been working closely with the people of the DRC to ensure peace in the troubled country, and that the elections scheduled for 30 October were held in a stable political environment.“Before any election can take place, the demobilisation of former rebel movements, including Interahamwe, is crucial,” Pahad said. “However, the withdrawal of the militia from the peace process is causing a delay in the demobilisation process and is also creating an unstable political climate.”On the political situation in Ivory Coast, Pahad said South Africa was asked by the African Union to try to unblock the peace process in that country.“We will review the Pretoria Agreement and identify the stumbling blocks in the implementation of the agreement”, the deputy minister told journalists.“After the Pretoria Agreement, which was signed by the warring sides, we have seen no progress in the implementation of the peace process. We would like to see the legislative process completed and the disarmament process begin.”President Thabo Mbeki is currently hosting another round of peace talks in Pretoria with key leaders of Cote D’Ivoire.Pahad said that while South Africa would do its best to ensure an amicable solution to that country’s problems, strong measures could be taken against those standing in the way of peace.“The possibility of sanctions to anyone obstructing the Pretoria Agreement is a reality,” he said.Pahad said South Africa would continue its conflict resolution mission in the continent’s hot spots.The United Nations Security Council has extended the UN operation in the Ivory Coast until 24 January 2006, following the unanimous adoption of Resolution 1609 (2005).“South Africa and Africa will not prosper if there are conflicts on the continent,” Pahad said. “We cannot achieve the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (Nepad) goals if there is continued instability on the continent.“It is within this context that South Africa assumes a leading role in resolving conflicts in Africa.”Source: BuaNewslast_img read more

US mission helps out in rural KZN

first_imgHealth workers in KZN will receiveassistance from US specialists.(Image: Ambulance)MEDIA CONTACTS• Chris MaxonCorporate CommunicationKwaZulu-Natal Department of Health+27 83 285 0567RELATED ARTICLES• Rural health gets R9m boost• Malaria cases halved in SA• Massive HIV-testing drive for SA• Swaziland to wipe out malariaBongani NkosiAbout 50 US healthcare volunteers have arrived in KwaZulu-Natal to offer specialist services in some of the province’s disadvantaged rural areas.The group, invited by the Seventh Day Adventist Students Association (SDASA), is here for a week to help out in communities such as uThungulu, Jozini and uMkhanyakudei in the far north of the province and other areas.“They want to make a contribution to largely disadvantaged communities,” said Chris Maxon, spokesperson for KwaZulu-Natal Department of Health, in an interview.The team – which includes doctors, dentists, eye-care specialists, nurses, psychologists and physiotherapists – represents the United Hands Project, an NGO formed in 1995 that enables US healthcare professionals to travel abroad to offer free medical care to people in need.Dr Sibongiseni Dhlomo, MEC for health in KwaZulu-Natal, will welcome the delegation on 26 July 2010 at a ceremony at the Inkosi Albert Luthuli Central Hospital. The volunteers will take up their posts the following day and work with local practitioners in state clinics and other facilities run by the health department.“They’ll be augmenting what the department is doing,” Maxon said. “They’ll be putting up tents and visiting our clinics.”The aim of the week-long mission is to reach out to as many residents as possible, the department said. “Depending on conditions, in a community where a clinic is far away, they’ll come with a mobile clinic.”‘Spreading the light’Dhlomo said the volunteers will literally and figuratively enlighten some of KwaZulu-Natal’s rural areas, because they’ll assist community members with eyesight problems.“The team of healthcare workers coming to the province will help those partially blind and awaiting cataract surgeries, to see more clearly,” said Dr Dhlomo in a statement.“There are two ways of spreading light – to be the candle or the mirror that reflects it,” he added. “They will really spread light in the rural communities of our province.”Members of SDASA and local residents will also be involved in the project. The association’s Advocate Boyce Mkhize said they will run week-long awareness programmes to promote healthy lifestyles among the rural population.They are hoping to draw many volunteers from the Seventh Day Adventist church and the community, Mkhize added.last_img read more

A new boost for an old science

first_imgCentre of excellence head Prof Bruce Rubidge aims to use the facility to make South Africa a world leader in palaeosciences.(Image: Janine Erasmus) Prof Lee Berger of Wits captured the attention of the world with his find of Australopithecus sediba.(Image: Maropeng) Sifelani Jirah, who holds an MSc in palaontology, prepares a fossil for study by carefully removing the rock around it. This process can take many months. Outreach and education officer Dr Ian Mackay shows high school students how fossils are prepared. This ancient tooth was scanned by the CT instrument and printed in the 3D printer.(Images: Janine Erasmus)MEDIA CONTACTS • Kanina FossSenior communications officer,Advancement and Partnerships Division,Wits University+27 11 717 1024 or +27 82 052 0939RELATED ARTICLES• New fox species found at Malapa• SA unearths new human ancestor• Old bones take Madiba’s name• Fossils tell the mammal story• Footsteps into the pastJanine ErasmusThe new Palaeosciences Centre of Excellence at Wits University will focus on increasing palaeontological research, creating new academic positions, developing technical abilities, grooming internationally competitive students, and making the science more accessible to the public.The centre was launched earlier in April by Science and Technology Minister Derek Hanekom, the ninth to be opened under the Centres of Excellence programme of the National Research Foundation and the Department of Science and Technology. There are five more centres to come, which are expected to be announced before the end of the 2013/2014 financial year.Hanekom also introduced a national strategy for palaeosciences, which was gazetted in draft form in 2011 for public discussion (download PDF, 1.09 MB). He said that South Africa had the potential to be a world leader in the field of palaeosciences, for several reasons.“The rich fossil and archaeological record we have in South Africa makes us one of the few regions in the world offering tangible and comprehensive records of the past and thus the possibility of understanding both past and present changes in biodiversity,” he said at the centre’s launch. “Indeed, at least three of the recognised five major global extinctions of the past 500 million years are represented in the rock record of South Africa.”Scientists believe that the world has entered a sixth global extinction period, but to understand it and accurately track changes, they need to have a full catalogue of biodiversity of the past.The minister also praised the trailblazing accomplishments of a team of scientists headed by Wits scholar Prof Lee Berger. The team is responsible for the discovery and description of Australopithecus sediba, a previously unknown species of hominid which roamed southern Africa about two-million years ago.Berger and his team recently had six articles featured in a special Sediba issue, published on 12 April, of the prestigious journal Science. “To get one article published in an issue of Science is an achievement, but six is extraordinary,” says Prof Bruce Rubidge, the director of the Bernard Price Institute for Palaeontological Research at Wits, and now head of the newly established centre of excellence.The centre is based at Wits, but will work with a number of academic and cultural institutions, namely, the University of Cape Town, Iziko Museums in Cape Town, the National Museum in Bloemfontein, the Albany Museum of Rhodes University in Grahamstown, and the Ditsong Museum of Natural History (formerly the Transvaal Museum) in Pretoria.Development of human capitalThe palaeosciences strategy, meanwhile, will provide a framework for the development of palaeontology, archaeology, palaeoanthropology, and other related fields.According to the strategy, the South African government will focus on the development of human capital in palaeosciences, as well as infrastructure such as storage, research and display facilities. It will also seek to provide careers and employment opportunities in the growing sector of palaeotourism.The centre aims to help fulfil these aims. “There are 29 scientists involved at the moment, including 14 academic staff from Wits. That’s already half of the complement, so this an ideal place to establish the research node,” says Rubidge. “There will be many other people, including technical staff and students, making this one of the biggest palaeoscience collaborations around.”Interest in the discipline is at an all-time high. “We’ve never had more students than we have today. But there is still a shortage of skills. We need more doctoral students in all sciences.” Rubidge is confident that the centre will make a real difference in addressing the challenges.He has other goals that include collaboration with other African countries, and the care and preservation of fossil collections, not only those kept at Wits. “We need to ensure that our collections are well looked after so that future generations can also benefit from them.”Wits holds the biggest palaeobotany herbarium in the southern hemisphere. It also has a microfocus x-ray computed tomography facility, which is an instrument that can produce an image of something embedded in another substance – such as a bone in rock – with a 3D printer to create a representation of the embedded object. This guides technicians in fossil preparation, as they have a better idea of where to chip away rock, and where not to.Priceless fossil recordSouth Africa is world-renowned for the antiquity of its rock record, which dates back some 3.5-billion years. Because so much of the local rocks are fossil-bearing, they present an unprecedented opportunity to examine changes in biodiversity over that period.“This is why we have a competitive advantage over other countries in this field,” explains Rubidge, “and we can be a global leader, but we need to exploit these resources in the same manner as we’ve done with our proximity to Antarctica, and the Karoo as ideal location for the Square Kilometre Array.”According to Hanekom, only South Africa can provide “the oldest evidence of life on Earth; the oldest multicellular animals; the most primitive land-living plants; the most distant ancestors of dinosaurs; the most complete record of the more than 80-million-year ancestry of mammals; and a remarkable record of the origins of humans and their earliest technological achievements over the past four-million years”.Rubidge explains that the South African record reveals clear evidence of the beginnings of life and the evolution of those early life forms into fish, amphibians and reptiles, which moved on to land about 300-million years ago, and branched in three directions into tortoises; mammals; and lizards, snakes, birds and dinosaurs.This entire evolutionary chain is forever captured in the rocks of South Africa’s semi-desert Karoo, which is the only place in the world, says Rubidge, to have such an extensive and continuous fossil record. Although humanity started in the Cradle of Humankind, an area about an hour’s drive northwest of Johannesburg, the origin of mammals lies in the Karoo, he adds.Rubidge was born in Graaff-Reinet in the Karoo and spent his childhood on a farm, where he developed an early interest in collecting fossils. He is keen to expose the schoolchildren of today to the same influences. “We’ll start at the junior level, because that’s the best time to foster a lifelong interest in a particular field. We also plan to build on our outreach activities for kids by enthusing and training their teachers. They’re the ones who need to carry the message forward and nurture the interest of the children.”He says that Wits graduates have never struggled to find jobs, and that there are a number who have forged respectable careers overseas, such as associate professor Darryl de Ruiter of Texas A&M University, and Patrick Bender, who worked for the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery. “Because South Africa’s fossil heritage is relatively unresearched and the resources are so rich, this also draws many students and researchers from overseas.”last_img read more

Skeletal spine

first_imgThe spine is divided into several sections. The cervical vertebrae make up the neck. The thoracic vertebrae comprise the chest section and have ribs attached. The lumbar vertebrae are the remaining vertebrae below the last thoracic bone and the top of the sacrum. The sacral vertebrae are caged within the bones of the pelvis, and the coccyx represents the terminal vertebrae or vestigial tail.Review Date:4/16/2013Reviewed By:C. Benjamin Ma, MD, Assistant Professor, Chief, Sports Medicine and Shoulder Service, UCSF Department of Orthopaedic Surgery. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Bethanne Black, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.last_img