|Title||Is differential use of Juniperus monosperma by small ruminants driven by terpenoid concentration|
|Publication Type||Journal Article|
|Year of Publication||2014|
|Authors||Estell RE, Utsumi S.A., Cibils AF, Anderson D.M.|
|Journal||Journal of Chemical Ecology|
|ARIS Log Number||297532|
|Keywords||goats, herbivory, one-seed juniper, Oxygenated terpenes, Resource availability hypothesis, sheep, targeted grazing, terpenes|
We examined the relationship between volatile plant secondary metabolite concentrations and Juniperus monosperma herbivory by small ruminants. Two groups of animals (10 goats or 5 goats plus 4 sheep) browsed 16 paddocks (20 x 30 m) containing one-seed juniper for six days during two seasons. Juniper leaves were sampled from 311 saplings on the same day they were browsed. Saplings were categorized by size (short [< 0.5 m], medium [0.5-1.0 m] or tall [> 1.0 m]) and browsing intensity (light [< 33%], moderate [33-66%] or heavy [> 66%]). Juniper bark was also collected from 12 saplings during spring. Total estimated terpenoid concentrations in leaves and bark were 18.3 ± 0.3 and 8.9 ± 0.8 mg/g, respectively, and the dominant terpene in both tissues was a-pinene (11.1 ± 0.2 and 7.6 ± 0.7 mg/g, respectively). Total terpenoid concentration was greater (P < 0.001) in spring than summer (20.6 ± 0.5 vs. 16.7 ± 0.3 mg/g, respectively) and lower (P < 0.001) in short saplings than medium or tall saplings (16.5 ± 0.6 vs. 19.8 ± 0.4 and 19.5 ± 0.4 mg/g, respectively). Total concentration also differed (P < 0.001) among the three defoliation categories (16.1 ± 0.4, 18.7 ± 0.5, and 21.2 ± 0.6 mg/g for heavy, moderate, and light, respectively). The smallest subset of terpenes able to discriminate (P < 0.001) between heavy and light browsing intensity categories included eight compounds ([E]-ß-farnesene, bornyl acetate, '-eudesmol, endo-fenchyl acetate, y-cadinene, a-pinene, cis-piperitol, and cis-p-menth-2-en-1-ol).