Search tips
Search criteria

Results 1-10 (10)

Clipboard (0)

Select a Filter Below

more »
Year of Publication
1.  Costing conservation: an expert appraisal of the pollinator habitat benefits of England’s entry level stewardship 
Biodiversity and Conservation  2014;23(5):1193-1214.
Pollination services provided by insects play a key role in English crop production and wider ecology. Despite growing evidence of the negative effects of habitat loss on pollinator populations, limited policy support is available to reverse this pressure. One measure that may provide beneficial habitat to pollinators is England’s entry level stewardship agri-environment scheme. This study uses a novel expert survey to develop weights for a range of models which adjust the balance of Entry Level Stewardship options within the current area of spending. The annual costs of establishing and maintaining these option compositions were estimated at £59.3–£12.4 M above current expenditure. Although this produced substantial reduction in private cost:benefit ratios, the benefits of the scheme to pollinator habitat rose by 7–140 %; significantly increasing the public cost:benefit ratio. This study demonstrates that the scheme has significant untapped potential to provide good quality habitat for pollinators across England, even within existing expenditure. The findings should open debate on the costs and benefits of specific entry level stewardship management options and how these can be enhanced to benefit both participants and biodiversity more equitably.
PMCID: PMC3970849  PMID: 24719520
Agri-environment schemes; Pollination services; Entry level stewardship
2.  Avoiding a bad apple: Insect pollination enhances fruit quality and economic value☆ 
•Insect pollination affects not only the quantity of apple production but also the quality.•The value of insect pollination to UK apple production may have previously been underestimated.•UK apple production could be significantly improved through management of insect pollination.•It is important to consider variety when valuing ecosystem services such as pollination to agricultural production.
Insect pollination is important for food production globally and apples are one of the major fruit crops which are reliant on this ecosystem service. It is fundamentally important that the full range of benefits of insect pollination to crop production are understood, if the costs of interventions aiming to enhance pollination are to be compared against the costs of the interventions themselves. Most previous studies have simply assessed the benefits of pollination to crop yield and ignored quality benefits and how these translate through to economic values. In the present study we examine the influence of insect pollination services on farmgate output of two important UK apple varieties; Gala and Cox. Using field experiments, we quantify the influence of insect pollination on yield and importantly quality and whether either may be limited by sub-optimal insect pollination. Using an expanded bioeconomic model we value insect pollination to UK apple production and establish the potential for improvement through pollination service management. We show that insects are essential in the production of both varieties of apple in the UK and contribute a total of £36.7 million per annum, over £6 million more than the value calculated using more conventional dependence ratio methods. Insect pollination not only affects the quantity of production but can also have marked impacts on the quality of apples, influencing size, shape and effecting their classification for market. These effects are variety specific however. Due to the influence of pollination on both yield and quality in Gala, there is potential for insect pollination services to improve UK output by up to £5.7 million per annum. Our research shows that continued pollinator decline could have serious financial implications for the apple industry but there is considerable scope through management of wild pollinators or using managed pollinator augmentation, to improve the quality of production. Furthermore, we show that it is critically important to consider all production parameters including quality, varietal differences and management costs when valuing the pollination service of any crop so investment in pollinator management can be proportional to its contribution.
PMCID: PMC3990452  PMID: 24748698
Apples; Pollination; Economic valuation; Pollinators; Pollination deficit; Apple quality; United Kingdom
3.  The identity of crop pollinators helps target conservation for improved ecosystem services☆ 
Biological Conservation  2014;169(100):128-135.
•Field beans are pollinated by a few important bumblebee species.•Oilseed rape is pollinated by a diverse insect community which varies spatially and temporally.•Managment to improve pollination service should be targeted at specific crops.
Insect pollinated mass flowering crops are becoming more widespread and there is a need to understand which insects are primarily responsible for the pollination of these crops so conservation measures can be appropriately targeted in the face of pollinator declines. This study used field surveys in conjunction with cage manipulations to identify the relative contributions of different pollinator taxa to the pollination of two widespread flowering crops, field beans and oilseed rape. Flower visiting pollinator communities observed in the field were distinct for each crop; while field beans were visited primarily by a few bumblebee species, multiple pollinator taxa visited oilseed, and the composition of this pollinator community was highly variable spatially and temporally. Neither pollinator community, however, appears to be meeting the demands of crops in our study regions. Cage manipulations showed that multiple taxa can effectively pollinate both oilseed and field beans, but bumblebees are particularly effective bean pollinators. Combining field observations and cage manipulations demonstrated that the pollination demands of these two mass flowering crops are highly contrasting, one would benefit from management to increase the abundance of some key taxa, whilst for the other, boosting overall pollinator abundance and diversity would be more appropriate. Our findings highlight the need for crop specific mitigation strategies that are targeted at conserving specific pollinator taxa (or group of taxa) that are both active and capable of crop pollination in order to reduce pollination deficits and meet the demands of future crop production.
PMCID: PMC3969722  PMID: 24696525
Crop pollination; Field beans; Oilseed rape; Ecosystem service; Crop pollinators; Pollinator conservation; Bumblebees
4.  Analysis of metals leached from smoked cigarette litter 
Tobacco Control  2011;20(Suppl_1):i30-i35.
Littered cigarette butts represent potential point sources for environmental contamination. In areas with substantial amounts of cigarette litter, environmental hazards may arise as chemical components are leached from the filters and smoked tobacco.
The three main aims of this study were: (1) to quantify the amount of Al, Ba, Cd, Cr, Cu, Fe, Pb, Mn, Ni, Sr, Ti and Zn leached from cigarette butts, (2) to determine the relationship between the pH of the aqueous soaking solution and metal concentration leached and (3) to determine the relationship between the period of soaking in aqueous solution and metal concentration leached.
Smoked cigarette butts and unsmoked cigarettes were added to phials containing aqueous solutions of pH 4.00, 5.00 and 6.00 (±0.05). The metal concentration of the resultant leachates was measured via inductively coupled plasma optical emission spectroscopy (ICP-OES) 1 day, 7 days and 34 days after sample addition.
All metals were detected in leachates 1 day after sample addition (with the exception of Cd) and were released at varying rates. No clear relationship between pH within the range typical of precipitation and metal concentration leached was observed.
Based on the gradual release of multiple metals over the full 34-day study period, cigarette litter was found to be a point source for metal contamination. The apparent rapid leaching of other metals may increase the risk of acute harm to local organisms.
PMCID: PMC3088461  PMID: 21504922
Trace metals; cigarette butts; litter; emission spectroscopy; environmental analysis; environment
5.  Illness behaviour in elite middle and long distance runners 
OBJECTIVES: To examine the illness attitudes and beliefs known to be associated with abnormal illness behaviour (where symptoms are present in excess of objective signs and pathology) in elite middle and long distance runners, in comparison with non-athlete controls. METHODS: A total of 150 athletes were surveyed using the illness behaviour questionnaire as an instrument to explore the psychological attributes associated with abnormal illness behaviour. Subjects also completed the general health questionnaire as a measure of psychiatric morbidity. A control group of 150 subjects, matched for age, sex, and social class, were surveyed using the same instruments. RESULTS: A multivariate analysis of illness behaviour questionnaire responses showed that the athletes' group differed significantly from the control group (Hotelling's T: Exact F = 2.68; p = 0.01). In particular, athletes were more somatically focused (difference between means -0.27; 95% confidence interval -0.50 to -0.03) and more likely to deny the impact of stresses in their life (difference between means 0.78; 95% confidence interval 0.31 to 1.25). Athletes were also higher scorers on the Whiteley Index of Hypochondriasis (difference between means 0.76; 95% confidence interval 0.04 to 1.48). There were no differences in the levels of psychiatric morbidity between the two groups. CONCLUSIONS: The illness attitudes and beliefs of athletes differ from those of a well matched control population. The origin of these psychological attributes is not clear but those who treat athletes need to be aware of them. 

PMCID: PMC1756131  PMID: 10027052
9.  Suicide in San Francisco. 
PMCID: PMC1499365  PMID: 6807410
10.  Laryngeal Case for Diagnosis 
Proceedings of the Royal Society of Medicine  1914;7(Laryngol Sect):39-40.
PMCID: PMC2003338  PMID: 19977881

Results 1-10 (10)