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ARCHIVE: Volume 5 - 2014

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Volume 5, Issue 1, March 2014

Research articles

J. Monge-Nájera, B. Morera-Brenes

Biodeterioration and Biodegradation of Roman Monuments: A Comparison of the Current Status of 18th Century Paintings by the Canalettos

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF ]                  pp. 3-8
Worldwide there is an urgent need to monitor the conditions of monuments affected by biodeterioration and biodegradation, but no long term data exist for most of them. Here is an exception in the case of certain Roman monuments whose bioderioration and biodegradation agents were painted approximately 250 years ago by Giovanni Canal and Bernardo Bellotto, the Canalettos. In our study we compare four paintings with recent photographs of the same monuments by using grid counts. The mean area affected by visible biodeterioration and biodegradation decreased less than 2% since the time of the Canalettos´s paintings (Chi-Square p < 0.004) and the improvement mostly involves higher plants. We urge others to find old paintings and photographs that can be used for similar studies in other cultural resources.

Keywords:Biodeterioration and biodegradation; Conservation; Stone monuments; Bacteria; Moss; Lichens


Y.M. Ma, H. Zhang, B.J. Zhang, M.F. Shi, R.P. Zhang

The Protective Effect of Grease Stains Caused by Hands Touching Stone Relics

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 9-20
Many exposed surfaces of stone relics were covered by grease stains by tourists’ touching or leaning. The grease stains have changed the appearance of stone relics seriously, so they are always supposed to be removed. However, the stones coated with grease always keep a better look than bare ones. In this work, a series of experiments were designed to explore whether grease can protect the stones. The results of SO2 corrosion experiment showed that SO2 had a corrosion effect on sandstones in the presence of water. Whereas the samples coated with grease almost remained unchanged after the corrosion test. From the salt destruction test, it was observed that grease stone samples were also less destroyed than blank ones. It means that grease stain can prevent the attack of SO2 corrosion and salt destruction, which are the major factors of damage in Yungang Grottoes, China.

Keywords: Grease; Stone relics; SO2 corrosion; Salt destruction; Water absorption


H.E. Ahmed

A New Approach to the Conservation of Metallic Embroidery Threads in Historic Textile Objects from Private Collections

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 21-34
The object under study represents a standard sample of the metallic embroidery threads in a late Ottoman historic textile object. The object ispart of the textile collection of Sheikh Yusuf Jameel - Saudi Arabia. It is richly decorated with multicolored plant motifs and with written decorations. The object dimensions are 185x280 cm. It was fixed on a plywood holder. Some of the metallic threads were coated with white oil paint. The uncontrolled conditions affect the identification of certain kinds of damages and deteriorations of metallic and natural threads. Different parts of the object were highly faded and discolored. A close examination of the textile was followed by various non-invasive analyses, in order to plan an appropriate conservation treatment. Our research revealed the practical strategies which have to be followed in maintaining and conserving textiles. The effects of cleaning substances on the natural dyes were tested. Different types of solvent were used to remove the corrosion layer from the metallic threads. Dry cleaning was used to remove resistant stains. The process of maintenance and restoration was recorded step by step, beginning from the historical record of the textile, to the various cleaning processes used. Additionally, we indicated the processes of fixing cleaned pieces on a new holder, as a preparation for their display in the Sheikh Yusuf Jameel museum.

Keywords: Metallic threads; Corrosion; Cleaning; SEM; Natural dyes; Dirt.


M. Singh, B.R. Arbad

Ancient Indian Painting Recipes and Mural Art Technique at Ajanta

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 35-50
Technological studies on Ajanta painted mortars (3rd – 4th Century A.D) have been attempted for suitable preservation strategy and preparation of paint ground, identification of materials and their decay process. Microstructures of layers along with material structure, composition and additives used in the mortar were investigated through colorimetry, XRF, FTIR, SEM-EDX, etc. Particle size of the clay mortar analyzed by laser scattering showed the use of high silt (70 – 75%) and low clay soil, probably sourced from the ravine of Waghura river and used for the preparation of the mud mortar. Byproducts of weathered basaltic rock, such as celandonite and white zeolites, bounded by organic proteic adhesive were found as filler in mud mortar as well. FTIR spectra of paint ground and pigment layer indicated the addition of organic binder that has now transformed into Calcium oxalate. In addition, the presence of vegetal matter observed with the FTIR analysis, might be due to addition of parts of cereals (such as the rice husk) cultivated in geographical area. SEM – EDX confirmed the presence of four different layers. The technique of painting remained almost identical in all the caves with very minor variation with respect to the ancient Indian painting art described in Indian old texts. An attempt to prepare mud mortar as per ancient recipe has been highlighted for the holistic restoration and preservation of Ajanta murals (World Heritage Site – WHS).

Keywords: Mud mortar; Stratification; Celandonite; Calcium Oxalate; Technique, Lapis lazuli, Consolidation


A. Cosentino

Panoramic Infrared Reflectography. Technical Recommendations

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 51-60
This paper presents some practical recommendations on performing Infrared Reflectography using an InGaAs camera and consumer level panoramic photography tools. This method employs a panoramic head to precisely rotate the InGaAs camera and shoot a sequence of images around the entrance pupil of the lens. Then the images are automatically stitched by panoramic imaging software. Panoramic Infrared Reflectography has several advantages; it is fast and mobile; can be implemented with budget equipment already available commercially; and no specific skill or expertise is required.

Keywords: Infrared Reflectography; InGaAs camera; Panoramic photography; Stitching software

D. Arya, J. Rawat

Species Composition and Diversity of Six Forest Stands at Almora and Around the Town Area Forests of Kumaun Himalaya

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 61-68
The present study was carried out in two major contrasting aspects (north-south) at and around the town area forests of Almora Kumaun Himalaya. Three stands on both the Northern and the Southern aspects were studied for their species composition and diversity, considering the microclimatic conditions and altitudinal gradient between 1500 - 1900msl. The study reveals that Pinus roxburghii was the dominant species on the Southern aspect, as well as on the lower altitude of the Northern aspect, while Cedrus deodara was the most dominant species on the Northern aspect. The total tree density varies from 300 to 420indha-1; sapling density from 30 to 130indha-1; seedling density from 100 to 1550indha-1 and shrub from 609.98 to 3265.33indha-1. The result on the basal area of trees ranges between 34.14 - 96.79m2ha-1 and the species diversity indices vary from 0.13 to 1.39.

Keywords: Species composition; Diversity; Regeneration; Kumaun Himalaya; India.

C.S. Mahajan, D.B. Sarode, R.N. Jadhav, S.B. Attarde, S.T. Ingle

Removal of Heavy Metals from Winery Wastewater by using Natural Adsorbents

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 69-78
Winery wastewater compositions are highly variable which differs significantly from season to season. Heavy metals like Cd, Pb, Cu, Ni, Zn, Mn and Mg are present in the wastewater. Heavy metals in winery wastewater can be reduced by adsorption process with good efficiency. For the comparative adsorption efficiency study, four adsorbents, such as neem leaf, orange peel, coconut husk and saw dust were used. All the adsorbents were sieved off from the 0.25mm pore size sieve. The polypropylene bottles with 300mL capacity were filled with 50mL of the winery wastewater and 2g of each adsorbent. The bottles were shaken for 1hour at 180rpm on rotary shaker at room temperature and after shaking samples were filtered and analyzed for the elemental concentrations of heavy metals on AAS for the verification of adsorption capacities of the adsorbents. The results shows that for Cu saw dust and coconut husk, for Zn saw dust and orange peel, for Mn coconut husk and orange peel and for Mg orange peel and coconut husk can be used as the adsorbents for partial removal of these metals from wastewater. The method is simple and cheap and may be operated on large scale for removal of heavy metals from industrial wastewaters.

Keywords: Neem leaf; Orange peel; Coconut husk; Saw dust; Heavy metals; Wastewater.

D. Nandi, S.R. Mishra

Groundwater Quality Mapping by using Geographic Information System (GIS): A Case Study of Baripada City, Odisha, India

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 79-84
Groundwater samples were collected from 12 locations of Baripada urban area and its surrounding settlements to analyze their quality so as to ascertain their suitability for drinking and agricultural use. In addition to TDS (total dissolved solids) and TH (total hardness), the concentration of several ions such as Ca2+, Mg2+, Na+, K+, HCO3-, Cl- and SO42- were measured. Analysis results showed that the concentration of Ca2+ and HCO3- is higher in comparison to other ions. The value of TDS and TH and the concentration of major ions are well within their limiting values as recommended by World Health Organization (WHO). It is found that the water is completely fit for drinking. Taking into consideration %Na and SAR (sodium absorption ratio), the groundwater is also found to be suitable for irrigation

Keywords: GIS; Ground Water Sample; Suitability analysis; Baripada

U.K. Sen

Assessment of Lichens in Selected Sacred Groves of West Midnapore District, West Bengal, India

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 85-94
Sacred groves are traditionally protected relic forest patches surviving on socio-religious grounds. It harbors valuable regional biodiversity with vital ecosystem and are under anthropogenic threats. Sacred groves are fairly well-studied for socio-cultural and ecological aspects, and evaluation of higher flora and fauna and their conservation. However, there are no or scarce studies on cryptogams available on sacred groves. The lichens have long been recognized as biologically sensitive indicators of environmental conditions. The present study reveals the occurrence of 129 species of lichens, represented by 52 genera and 25 families in ten selected sacred groves. Shorea robusta exhibited the maximum diversity of lichens by 74 species. Since this is the first study of lichens in the district there is ample scope for further studies in South Bengal region. This study will help to understand the diversity of lichens better and give the correct status of the biodiversity of West Bengal.

Keywords: Lichens; Diversity; Sacred Grove; West Midnapore; West Bengal; India.

D. Sugandi

A Model of Environmental Conservation for Sagara Anakan

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 95-106
The decrease of agricultural land areas, which has an impact on the decrease of production and forest, is caused by human’s activities in fulfilling their needs. The activities cause changes in the ecosystem. The damaged ecosystem causes erosion, while landslide in the watershed has an impact on sedimentation in the waters of Sagara Anakan. The issues and aims of this research: to analyze the socio-economic influence of farmers in doing environmental conservation, the form of conservation conducted by the inhabitants by utilizing, an integrated conservation model, and the roles of the inhabitants in the conservation of the watershed and coastal of Sagara Anakan. The research used a survey method, using samples consisting of tershed and coastal areas. The analysis technique used statistics and geography to describe the characteristics of the watershed. The physical shallowing of Sagara Anakan is influenced by the erosion and is quickened by human’s activities. The inhabitants conserved watershed except for reforestation, while areas the former swamp and coastal areas were not conserved. Because the physical conditions are different, so the forms of conservations must be different. The socio-economic limitations of the inhabitants have a direct influence on the conservation. Meanwhile, the areas that used to be swamps and coastal were not conserved due to the impalpable physical conditions. To conserve the Sagara Anakan sea, the forms of conservation employed were tree planting, no fishing, water dredging, no trashing, no use of chemical substance to catch fish and catching certain sizes of fish. On the other hand, conservations had to be different and integrated, requiring the engagement of the inhabitants.

Keywords: Environment; Socio-economy; Conservation model, Empowerment.

M. Singh, A.K. Sinha, P. Singh

Maintaining the Biodiversity of Informal Protected Areas: A Collaborative Conservational Approach

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 107-116
Collaborative conservation strategies for protecting and managing natural resources help in creating healthy eco-system. Collaborative approach gives a chance in which conservation issues target collectively by using adaptive management of whole ecosystems including human communities. The idea is to conserve the local landscape, wildlife and resources by the community and for the community. Collaborative conservation strategies also apply widely for ecosystem management in informal protected areas. In this paper, firstly the role of collaborative conservation of an informal site is discussed to demonstrate how it helps in maintaining and managing the biodiversity and then conservation of formal protected areas and the adjoining cultivated landscape is compared with the biodiversity of informal landscape. It was found that there is no significant difference in biodiversity richness between the formal and informal protected sites. The paper also focuses on theuse of collaboration in conservation as a way for bringing together diverse views to construct decisions on how to protect the environment for the future.

Keywords: Collaborative conservation strategy; Informal protected area; Dayalbagh Eco Village; Biodiversity Maintenance

A.A. Kadir, M.M. Al Bakri Abdullah, A.V. Sandu, N.M. Noor, A.L. Abd Latif, K. Hussin

Usage of Palm Shell Activated Carbon to Treat Landfill Leachate

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 117-126
Leachate generated from the municipal landfill contains organic and inorganic pollutants, including heavy metals, which makes it unsuitable to be discharged in natural bodies without any prior treatment. The objective of this study is to investigate the capability of palm shell activated carbon activated carbon powder to remove heavy metals from landfill leachate, by using an adsorption process. Batch experiments were carried out to investigate the performance of palm shell activated carbon powder powder with different contact times of 30 minutes, 60 minutes and 90 minutes. The results obtained show that the percentage of Fe and Cr removal increases with contact time. The removal of Fe and Cr was 14% and 18.78% respectively activated carbon powder at 90 minutes of contact time. Our results also demonstrated that palm shell activated carbon powder powder shows a better performance in removing Fe and Cr, compared to common activated carbon powder powder. Therefore, palm shell activated carbon powder powder has a good potential as a low cost alternative adsorbent in removing heavy metals from landfill leachate.

Keywords: Adsorption; Palm Shell Activated Carbon; Leachate; Heavy Metals

Available online on 14.03.2014     


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Volume 5, Issue 2, June 2014

Research articles

R. Linke, M.A. Ziemann

The Detection of Copper-based Pigment Darkening by Biuret-reaction in Mural Paintings by SEM-EDX, Micro-XRF and micro-Raman Spectroscopy

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 129-138
Micro-Raman spectroscopy, micro-XRF and SEM-EDX were applied to samples of baroque mural paintings in order to investigate a quite uncommon pigment alteration from azurite to tenorite by forming a biuret-complex which gives the painting a violet color. The detection of this discoloration gives the proof for the presence of protein and indicates the application of casein.

Keywords:Micro-Raman-Spectroscopy; SEM-EDX; Micro-XRF; Azurite; Malachite; Tenorite; Pigment alteration; Biuret reaction


A.C. Pinheiro, C. Viegas, S. Viegas, C. Veríssimo, J. Brandão, M.F. Macedo

Particulate Matter Distribution in Selected Portuguese Archives: A Preliminary Study

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 139-150
Particulate matter (PM) can have a significant impact on human health and on artifacts stored and kept inside museums and archives. To the author's knowledge, its immediate and/or long-term concentrations and distribution on Portuguese archives has never been determined. Four Portuguese archives (with and without HVAC/air filtration systems) were selected and the immediate concentration of airborne particulate matter was measured by active sampling. Indoor-outdoor ratios were also determined. International and national guidelines were used to ascertain the environment’s quality, both for the readers and staff and for the documents preserved in these institutions. Inside, PM2.5 ranged between 0.37g/m3 and 27.61g/m3, while PM10 ranged between 4.43g/m3 and 285.52g/m3. The lowest values were determined in storage rooms and the highest in reading rooms. In terms of human health, Portuguese guidelines for immediate PM10 concentration were not met in several locations. For conservation purposes, storage rooms were classified according to an original air quality grid. Air filtration systems proved valuable in maintaining a safe environment for our written heritage and the staff and readers that deal with it and care for it every day. This study constitutes the first snapshot of the particulate matter concentrations and distribution in Portuguese Archives.

Keywords: Archives; Conservation; Documents; Indoor Air Quality; Particulate Matter


S. Gulzar, M.N. Chaudhry, J.P. Burg, S.A. Saeed

Characterization of Mortars From the Nur Jahan Tomb Lahore, Pakistan

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 151-160
This work describes the chemical and mineralogical characteristics of historic pozzolanic lime mortars and modern cement mortars sampled from the Nur Jahan Tomb in Shahdara complex, Lahore, Pakistan. The mortars were studied through petrographic (polarized optical microscopy), mineralogical (XRD) and elemental (SEM-EDS, XRF) analyses. Crushed brick as pozzolanic additive created hydraulic mortars in the Mughal and British period. We also detected the prevalent use of cement-based mortar for the repairs. These compositional differences highlight the complexity of hydration processes. The formation of different hydration products in historic and modern mortars makes them incompatible and further accelerated deterioration and loss of historic fabric.

Keywords: Mortar; Mughal; Pozzolana; C-S-H phases; XRF; SEM-EDS; LA-ICPMS


M.M. Megahed

A Comparative Characterization and Practical Study of Bronze Patinas and Corrosion Mechanism, Applied on Some Ancient Objects from Egypt and Yemen

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 161-176
A large number of studies on ancient bronze have tried to establish the chemical characteristics and structure of natural patinas grown up artifacts exposed to soil or the ambient atmosphere for a long time, these archaeological artifacts represent excellent samples for such studies, since the laboratory experiments have been carried out for a short time. The aim of the present paper is to study bronze alloy to get a deeper in sight into the physical and chemical characteristic of its patinas, the causes and mechanism of corrosion process to control and stop it, and to identify the types of corrosion products of selected objects as well as their constituting metals in order to carry out scientific treatment for preservation to avoid the further deterioration. To achieve this purpose, a group of bronze objects from Egypt and Yemen have been selected for investigation of their chemical composition, metallurgical features and corrosion products, analytical and characterization study on areal bronze samples was performed, using Metallographic Microscope, Scanning Electron Microscope, X-ray Diffraction Analysis, and X-ray Florence Analysis. Also a systematic approach was used while practicing on a group of archaeological bronze objects from different areas in Egypt and Yemen, the two studies were connected and compared. Exploiting the collected info, chemical cleaning and electrical reduction methods were chosen for treating the objects.

Keywords: Bronze; Patinas; Corrosion mechanism; Metallographic examinations; SEM, XRD and XRF analysis; Conservation state


S. Abdelaal, N. Mahmoud, V. Detalle

Technical Examination and Identification of Wood, Pigments, Grounds and Binder of an Ancient Egyptian Sarcophagus

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 177-188
This paper describes an ancient Egyptian polychrome wooden sarcophagu,s found in the Saqarra excavation, Egypt. Multiple analytical and examination techniques were carried out on that ancient Egyptian, polychrome, wooden sarcophagus, such as optical light polarizing microscopy, X-Ray diffraction (XRD), scanning electron microscopy (SEM) coupled with EDS and FTIR spectroscopy. The structure of the object was visually examined. The wood was identified as Ulmus wood, which helped and confirmed the history of that wooden sarcophagus. Ulmus wood type is not Egyptian wood, it was imported from Greece. The plaster layers were identified as calcite mixed with huntite, by using a combination of techniques The pigments used to decorate the Sarcophagus were identified as Egyptian blue cuprorivaite (CaCuSi4O10 ) as the source of the blue pigment The green pigment sample was identified by SEM-EDS, which indicated the presence of Cu, Si, Ca, as the main elements of the Egyptian green The black pigment was carbon black. The organic binder used was probably egg yolk and white egg with linseed oil.

Keywords: Egyptian sarcophagus; Pigments; Egyptian blue; Ulmus; Egg Yolk.

N.A.A. El-Tawab Bader

Honeycomb Weathering of Limestone Buildings in the Archaeological Sites of Leptis Magna (Libya): Causes, Processes and Damage

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 189-202
Honeycomb weathering is a common surface phenomenon affecting a variety of rocks in a range of environments. The processes involve the appearance of closely spaced cavities which are generally small, with an average width of a few millimeters to several centimeters in diameter. Honeycomb weathering is also known as fretting, cavernous weathering, alveoli/alveolar weathering, stone lattice, stone lace or miniature tafoni weathering. Incipient honeycomb weathering in a homogeneous limestone has been experimentally reproduced by wind exposure and salt crystallization. It is a type of salt weathering common on coastal and semi-arid limestone. Honeycomb weathering occurs in many populated region and must have been noted in archaeological sites at Leptis Magna (Libya). Leptis Magna is a World Heritage site on the Mediterranean coast of North Africa in the Tripolitania region of Libya. In order to create an appropriated conservation concept, it was necessary to investigate the damage processes. For this purpose we used X-ray powder diffraction (XRD), optical and scanning electron microscope (SEM) coupled with EDX, Stereo microscope, polarizing microscopes (PM). Biodeterioration problems in the site were analyzed by taking into account their impact on the substrate and their relationship with environmental factors. Chemical analysis and field observations indicated that honeycomb weathering in coastal exposures of limestone in the archaeological sites of Leptis Magna resulted from the evaporation of salt water deposited by waves from the Mediterranean Sea. Microscopic examination of weathered samples showed that erosion resuled from the disaggregation of mineral grains, rather than from chemical decomposition. Thin walls separating adjacent cavities seem to be the result of the protective effects of organic coatings produced by microscopic algae inhabiting the rock surface.

Keywords: Honeycomb; Leptis Magna; Limestone; Environmental factors, Salts; Biodeterioration

R. El Moustaine, A. Chahlaoui, E.H. Rour

Relationships Between the Physico-Chemical Variables and Groundwater Biodiversity: A Case Study from Meknes Area, Morocco

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 203-214
The relationship has been established between the physico-chemical variables and the distribution of groundwater fauna in Meknes area, Morocco that is being subjected to anthropogenic pollution. This study aimed at showing the possible relationships between the physico-chemical variables of the water quality of wells and springs and the Groundwater biodiversity. To this end, the water quality and the fauna were regularly investigated in several stations (8 wells and 2 springs) selected in the region. The stations were chosen considering visible differences related to both their fauna and also some evident characteristics i.e. water table depth, nature of geological substratum, protection and human use. Groundwater crustaceans and especially its stygobiont fraction (species developing their entire life cycle exclusively in groundwater) living in this compartment are good predictors for the water quality. They are highly sensitive to any disturbance in their environment (both quality and quantity) and consequently their risks to be threatened are higher that turn to greater chances of extinction.

Keywords: Wells; Stygobiont fauna; Water quality; Indicators

N.A. Pala, A.K. Negi, N.P. Todaria

The Religious, Social and Cultural Significance of Forest Landscapes in Uttarakhand Himalaya, India

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 215-222
The present study was an attempt to understand the community behavior of cultural and tradition rich forested landscapes towards the conservation and management of forest resources. The present study was conducted in five selected protected forests (Chanderbadni, Jameshwar, Ulkagari, Ansuiya Devi and Maroor) located in four districts of Garhwal Himalaya, India. Conservation practices and belief system was discussed with local inhabitants residing within and around the vicinity of these forests. A well-structured semi-structured questionnaire dataset was developed for formal and informal discussions with the communities. Deities of both genders are worshiped; however, people have more faith in feminine deities compared to male deities. The awareness among villagers regarding the conservation is historical. Different festivals and traditional celebrations are held to keep the heritage intact with younger generations. No use of weapons, restrictions to pregnant women, and ban on spitting and making of toilets around the core zones has restricted the entry by the local communities. Demarcation around the boundaries by red flags or statues of gods or goddesses have been erected in the forested landscapes to put votive offerings, which ultimately give protection to these landscapes in the form of social conservation.

Keywords: Religion; Tradition; Conservation; Communities; Demarcation.

P. Singh, B.L. Attri

Survey on Traditional Uses of Medicinal Plants of Bageshwar Valley (Kumaun Himalaya) of Uttarakhand, India

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 223-234
This paper communicates the traditional uses of medicinal plants of Bageshwar valley of Uttarakhand. Aims of the study were to document the medicinal plant and their indigenous traditional use patterns by local population. A total of 158 taxa belonging to 83 families were reported as locally used for various medicinal purposes. These medicinal plants used against various diseases e.g. asthma, cough, malaria, tuberculosis, cancer, abdominal pain, cholera, piles, tumor, headache, snakebites, jaundice, diarrhea, dysentery etc. Observation of the site showed that vegetation of the area was generally threatened due to deforestation, over grazing, habitat fragmentation, un-scientific extraction, and habitat loss. Measures for the conservation of plant resources especially medicinal plants of Bageshwar valley (Kuamun Himalaya) are urgently needed.

Keywords: Kumaun Himalaya; Medicinal Plants; Vegetation; Conservation; Bageshwar Valley

A.V. Sijinkumar, K. Sandeep, N. Shinu, V. Megha, C. Shyamini, K.R. Sreeni, K. Suvarna

A Preliminary Assessment of Environmental Impacts Due to Bauxite and Laterite Mining in Karindalam and Kinanur, Southern India

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 235-242
The present work deals with the assessment of possible environmental impacts due to the proposed bauxite mining and existing laterite mining in the Karindalam and Kinanur area of Kasaragod district of Kerala. A field survey was carried out in the laterite mining area of Karindalam and Kinanur area and data regarding ground water level and quality was collected. The local geology of the area was also documented. A comparison of the Google Earth images of 2003 and 2010 reveals that number of laterite mines have increased significantly during this period resulting in the land degradation. The water table of the area is moderately deeper (average depth 32 feet); hence there will not be much contamination due to percolation but care should be taken to avoid the contamination of surface water bodies by proper waste dumping and effluent treatment. Sustainable mining activities may benefit the local people due to provision of infrastructural facilities provided by local industry, as mining industry boost up the local market. Since the ore reserves of this area are economically viable, their utilization may improve the economic status of the people, provided the management should committed to environmental protection which leads to sustainable development of the region.

Keywords: Bauxite; Karindalam; Kinanur; Environment; Kasaragod; Laterite

A. Mihu-Pintilie, G. Romanescu, C.C. Stoleriu, O. M. Stoleriu

Ecological Features and Conservation Proposal for the Largest Natural Dam Lake in the Romanian Carpathians – Cuejdel Lake

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 243-252
Cuejdel Lake is the largest aquatorium among the Romanian natural dam lakes and one of the top 5 largest natural dam lakes in the Romanian Carpathians (surface – 13.88ha, max. depth – 14.9m, total volume – 815,986m3 in 2013). The lake was generated by a large landslide that dammed the Cuejdel brook (in Ștânișoarei Mountains, Eastern Carpathians) during the summer of 1991. Cuejdel Lake was officially designated a national natural reserve by the Governmental Decision 2151/2004 regarding the creation of new protected areas and the conservation of natural flora and fauna habitats. Since 2011, our team has monitored the lake and studied the evolution of this limnosystem at the level of the lacustrine depression and its reception basin. Our research results indicated that, after 20 years of evolution and negative changes in the value of its morpho-bathymetric parameters (surface – 2.37ha, max. depth – 2.3m, total volume – 26.77104m3), the lake is now in a relative hydrodynamic equilibrium with the obstructive dam. This paper is aimed to highlight the ecological features of this limnosystem that could further help to identify better solutions for the conservation of the lacustrine cuvette, in the context of an increasing anthropic pressure (deforestations, water pollution, uncontrolled tourist impact etc). The research indicates that the integration of the Cuejdel natural reserve and its reception basin within the Vânători-Neamț Natural Park could be the best solution to preserve this hydro-morphological site and its biodiversity.

Keywords: Natural dam lake; Limno-ecological index; Biodiversity conservation; Cuejdel Lake.

Review article

K.A.R. Nishadh, K.S. Anoop Das

Tree-Hole Aquatic Habitats: Inhabitants, Processes and Experiments. A Review

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 253-268
Studying small confined habitat has two fold advantages for ecological research. Firstly, its importance as habitat to a micro-ecosystem, and secondly its applications in experimental research. Tree-hole aquatic habitat is such a habitat having a considerable importance as micro - habitat for numerous significant species, especially for disease spreading invertebrates, which act as model systems as they have tractability and generality at laboratory scale studies. This review highlights profiles of tree-hole aquatic habitats and ecological relationships of its inhabitants supported by experimental evidences in peninsular India.

Keywords: Aquatic insects; Phytotelmata; Tree hole; Trichoptera

Available online on 15.06.2014     


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Volume 5, Issue 3, September 2014

Research articles

P. Gameiro, F. Bilou, P. Moita, C. Marques, L. Dias, A. Ferreira, J. Mirao, A. Candeias

Were castle walls in Portugal covered with renders?
The case of Arraiolos Castle

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF ]                  pp. 271-282
Arraiolos Castle is one the medieval fortresses that still stands in Southern Portugal with few modifications and conservation interventions. Particularly relevant is the fact that large areas of the castle walls are covered with mortars and some have gothic inscriptions that point out to their production in the second half of the 14th century. This work was carried out in order to verify if the mortars present were contemporaneous of each other and the age of the mortars. The characterisation methodology involved a multidisciplinary set of chemical and microanalytical techniques and radiocarbon dating. The results showed that all mortars have similar composition, with aerial calcium magnesium lime as binder and aggregates with siliceous nature and similar in composition to the rock of the region around Arraiolos. The radiocarbon blind analysis corroborated the date discovered in one of the gothic inscriptions found in the renders of the castle walls

Keywords: Castle walls; Historical mortars; Characterization; Radiocarbon dating.


J.M. Barros Garcia

Cleaning Areas: The Location of Tests in the Cleaning of Paintings

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 283-294
Cleaning tests are usually carried out in order to study the solubility of the non-original layers. They also supply part of the information necessary in order to understand the configuration of the deposits, to select the layers which will be removed and to design the most adequate cleaning systems. Study of these tests has been chiefly based on protocols which allow decisions to be made concerning which chemical agents should be used in a given cleaning operation. The aim of this research has been to develop a system to improve the design and, particularly, the location of cleaning tests. In order to do so, cleaning area has been defined, a concept which allows the surface of painting to be divided into areas which do not show a regional variability. This division enables the location of cleaning tests to be organized in a structured and efficient manner.

Keywords: Cleaning; Cleaning test; Solubility; Painting; Stratigraphy.


M.E. Osman, A.A.E. El-Shaphy, D.A. Meligy, M.M. Ayid

Survey for Fungal Decaying Archaeological Wood and their Enzymatic Activity

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 295-308
Fungi play a considerable role in deterioration/degradation of cultural heritage due to their enormous enzymatic activity. A total of 112 fungal isolates were isolated from different archaeological wood objects located at different areas (Islamic Art Museum, Storage area of Cheops's Solar Boat, Excavation of Saqqara and Grand Egyptian Museum). Aspergillus spp. were predominant in all investigated samples. Thirty seven isolates were screened for cellulases, pectinases and ligninases activity. Aspergillus brasiliensis Varga, Frisvad et Janos and Penicillium duclauxii Delacroix exhibited high cellulolytic activity while Aspergillus amstelodami (Mangin) Thom and Cruch and Aspergillus parasiticus Speare have high pectinolytic activity. Seven fungal species showed ligninolytic potential activity based on their ability to oxidize dyes.

Keywords: Biodeterioration/biodegradation; Archaeological wood; Cultural heritage; Fungal cellulases; Pectinases; Ligninases.


M.M. Megahed

Assessment of Some Ag-based Coins from Ayyubid Period, Yemen. Corrosion and Methods of Treatment

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 309-320
Some Archaeological Coins have been discovered in Al- Banawa excavation, Dhamar, season 2002, and now they are situated in Dhamar museum, Yemen. These coins suffered from corrosion products mixed with particulars of the soil and others deterioration aspects. This work aims to evaluate the effectiveness of the corrosion mechanism on the coins, identify the morphology and mineralogy of corrosion products and identify the Metallic composition of these Coins and the best methods for treatment. To achieve these aims analytical and characterization study on areal samples from the coins was performed using metallographic microscope, scanning electron microscope, X-Ray Diffraction Analysis and X-Ray Florence. The examinations showed the bad case of the coins which had suffering from along buried time. X-ray fluorescence results showed that the coins consists a ternary alloy [ Silver, Copper, Lead ]. The difference in potential between the three metals in the Coins play a serious role in corrosion process. Finally The obtained results assist in choosing the best methods of treatment and Conservation.

Keywords: Islamic coins; Ag-based alloys; Corrosion mechanism; XRD; SEM; XRF; Conservation.


K.O. Emeriewen, F.E. Oladugbagbe

A Characterization of Selected Precious Metals Artifacts from Benin City

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 321-328
In the fabrication of artifacts, issues like the true components of produced materials, date of production and the provenance cannot be overlooked. Significantly, the foregoing has its close affinity with materials' forgery and faking. This brings to bear the pertinent question of the perceived materials employed in the production of an artifact, as against the true components. To examine the components of a material, there is a need for the application of an external technique to probe into the internal properties of the material, which is known as material characterization. The need for materials' scientific analysis, which has overtime provided failure-proof result, has increasingly become imperative even in the arts. To demonstrate this, nine precious metals artifacts from Benin City were studied using three different Ion Beam Accelerator techniques (IBA). These included Rutherford backscattering spectrometry (RBS), proton induced gamma-ray emission spectroscopy (PIGE) and proton induced X-ray emission spectroscopy (PIXE). The elemental analysis provided forensic evidence of faking of the studied silver alloy items and undercarating of the gold alloy items

Keywords: Characterization; True component materials (TCM); Perceived materials; Material analysis.

A. Bailao, M. San Andres, A. Calvo

Colorimetric analysis of two watercolours used in retouching

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 329-342
Prussia blue and phthalo blue have a particularly importance in retouching because they provided a considerable amount of green and they are also transparent, which will give strong clear greens when needed during the retouching practice. The objective of this experiment is to evaluate the colorimetric change of the two cited pigments, in watercolours, after being exposed to direct sunlight for one year, comparing the results with another two samples protected from solar radiation, and also analyse the spectral curves similarity between both. The pigments are of the brand Artist�s Watercolour of Winsor & Newton. Colour variations were determined in the uniform colour space called CIELAB. The results show that phtalo is more stable than Prussian blue.

Keywords: Colorimetry; Prussia blue; phthalo blue; Watercolours; Winsor & Newton; Retouching.

M.M. Abdelmegeed, E. Badogiannis, G. Kotsovos., E. Vougioukas

Assessment of Physical and Mechanical Properties of Historical and Traditional Masonry Buildings: A Case Study

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 343-354
Historical buildings demand a full characterization of the materials used for their construction, before any rehabilitation action. The assessment of the mechanical characteristics of the masonry materials is based on visual observation, sampling of the construction materials and laboratory testing of the samples. The work described is concerned with the rehabilitation of a traditional masonry house in Athens which over the years suffered damage due to various causes. The paper describes the early preliminary stages of the rehabilitation work concerned with the description of the structural system, the mapping of damage and the documentation of the materials used.

Keywords: Building materials; Cracking; Damage; Deterioration; Structural assessment; Traditional masonry building.

G. Abdel-Maksoud, A.R. El-Amin, F. Afifi

Insecticidal Activity of Cinnamomum Cassia Extractions Against the Common Egyptian Mummies' Insect Pest (Dermestes Maculatus)

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 355-368
Dermestes maculatus is considered the responsible of the most serious pests which caused damage to Egyptian mummies. Hexane, petroleum ether, chloroform, acetone and ethanol extracts from Cinnamomum cassia were tested for their insecticidal activities against Dermestes maculatus larvae isolated from Egyptian mummies. Responses varied according to type of solvent, concentrations and exposure time. The results showed that the chloroform extract from Cinnamomum cassia was the most effective one at the LC 25,50,75,90,95&99 levels against Dermestes maculatus larvae. The data also showed that the Chloroform extract at any concentration realized complete mortality after a period that did not exceed 5, 8, 10, 13, 16 days with petroleum ether, hexane, acetone and ethanol respectively.

Keywords: Mummy; Cinnamomum cassia; Dermestesmaculatus; Biological activity; Extracts

A.M. Eriksen, H.V. Kristensen, P. Boellingtoft, K.B. Botfeldt, A.R. Rasmussen

Identification of Animal Adhesives using DNA Amplification

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 369-378
The aim of this study was to examine whether DNA was degraded in the manufacturing of animal glue. To test this, two different types of sturgeon glue (Acipenser sp.) were manufactured using historic recipes. One glue was boiled for a substantial amount of time and the other was kept under 75 C. DNA samples were collected from both glues in order to test whether the DNA was degraded in the heating process of making the glue. It was also tested whether two different kinds of flex canvas (for paintings), one coarse and one fine weaved would inhibit the PCR reaction. To do this the glue were applied onto the canvas and samples were collected. To examine the sample size needed to get an amplifiable DNA sample, different sizes was collected of the canvas, 1.0cm2; 0,5cm2 and 0,5cm of a single thread. It was possible to get amplifiable DNA in 11 out of 12 samples collected after the manufacturing of the glue and in 18 out of 24 samples collected of the canvas. In four out of the five cases where it was not possible amplify DNA, the sample belongs to the smallest size of the canvas investigated. As shown in this study it is possible to get DNA out of boiled animal glue and glue applied onto canvas. The application of aDNA techniques provides several new possibilities for further material analysis of (pre)historic artefacts

Keywords: Animal adhesive; glue; Sturgeon glue; Organic binding media; Isinglass; Acipenser sp.; Huso sp.; Cytochrome b; mtDNA

A.K. Nayak, S.P. Yadav, S. Behera

Seasonal Occurrence of Available Prey Densities in Similipal Tiger Reserve, Mayurbhanj, Odisha, India

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 379-386
Prey densities were estimated in Similipal Tiger Reserve, Odisha, India from January 2012 to October 2012 by applying line transect distance methods. Season wise available prey density data was collected. The pre-monsoon and Post-monsoon seasons prey data analyzed separately. In total, seven prey items were found on the transect lines from various parts of the reserve core and buffer area in an area of 2530.41 km2. The common langur (Semnopithecus entellus) and rhesus macaque (Macaque mulata) population densities in the study area were the highest followed by chital (Axis axis), wild pig (Sus scrofa), sambar (Rusa unicolor), barking deer (Muntiacus muntjac) and mouse deer (Tragulus kanchil). Common langur population was highest 10.2�2 SE/km2 in pre-monsoon and 16�2.7 SE/km2 in post-monsoon whereas mouse deer population was found to be low 0.6�0.2 SE/km2 in pre-monsoon. Our preliminary results may indicate that in Similipal the density of the overall ungulates and each species seems to be very less compared with other landscapes. Continuous prey population monitoring is going on in Similipal Tiger Reserve which may indicates the rising of prey populations in reserve subsequently. However, only one year data is presented here to know the prelinary prey status of this tiger reserve. Further analysis is under consideration in due course of prey population study. Therefore, the proper management plan is required for better conservation of the prey and their predator in Similipal Tiger Reserve.

Keywords: Prey; Density; Transect; Similipal Tiger Reserve; Odisha

Nandi

Coastal Conservation Policies and Integrated Coastal Zone Management (ICZM) in Indonesia

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 387-396
The issue on coastal conservation serves as a base to make the management of a coastal area in an integrated way, known as the integrated coastal zone management (ICZM) concept. Studies on coastal conservation policy and ICZM in Indonesia have so far focused on implementations of relevant policies and regulations. The objective of this paper is to get an insight on the coastal conservation policies implemented in Indonesia. The coastal conservation policy of ICZM element is explained by examining: (1) Indonesian coastal areas (2) the political will of the government on environment issues in Indonesia; (3) the institutional capacity context in managing the coastal resources; and (4) the public participation in the coastal management. Indonesian objective of coastal management is to achieve sustainable development. However, after reviewing major elements on coastal conservation policy, it turns out that the policy is quite difficult to implement.

Keywords: Coastal Conservation; Coastal Management; ICZM; Indonesia

A. Mukherjee, K. Sarma

Community Structure of Plant Species in Okhla Bird Sanctuary, Delhi, India

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 397-408
Okhla Bird Sanctuary (OBS) has been well known as the home of migratory birds and most of the studies have been so far focused on bird diversity and aquatic vegetation. The present study was conducted to find out the structure and composition of terrestrial vegetation of sanctuary in two Nature trails. The total number of terrestrial plant species recorded in the study area is 106, of which 48 are trees, 9 shrubs and 49 herbs. The density of tree species were recorded in Nature Trail 1 and Nature Trail 2 had almost similar value with 7.10 and 6.68 stems per ha while density of shrub species found were 5.51 and 6.29 individuals/m2. The density of herbaceous species in both the trails enumerated were 50.93 and 46.89 individuals/m2, respectively. In terms of importance value index, Leucaena leucocephala (IVI- 24.49; SDI- 0.0067) was the dominant tree species in the Nature Trail 1, followed by Ficus benghalensis (IVI- 19.90; SDI- 0.0044), Ficus sp (IVI- 17.45; SDI- 0.0034) and Melia azedarach (IVI- 14.35; SDI- 0.0023). In shrub layer, Tabernaemontana divaricata (IVI- 42.04; SDI- 0.0442), followed by Abutilon indicum (IVI- 39.98; SDI- 0.0400) and Lantana camara (IVI- 35.63; SDI- 0.0317) were the most dominant species in Nature Trail 1. Among the herbaceous species, Cynodon dactylon (IVI- 65.9; SDI- 0.1087) was found to dominate the entire stretch of Nature trail 1, followed by Cannabis sativum (IVI- 20.8; SDI- 0.0108), Oxalis corniculata (IVI- 14.6; SDI- 0.0053) and Chenopodium album (IVI- 10.3; SDI- 0.0026). In case of basal area Nature Trail 2 was significantly higher (6.13 m2ha-1) than Nature Trail 1 (6.03 m2ha-1).

Keywords: Okhla wildlife sanctuary; Terrestrial vegetation; Community structure; Importance Value Index; Dominance pattern; Species diversity.

Review article

S. Neculai-Valeanu, D. Drugociu

Biomimetic Technologies. Usefull Tool in Conservation of Endagered Species

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 409-418
It has been suggested that artificial insemination (AI) and other forms of artificial reproductive technologies (ART) might be useful for genetic conservation of endangered breeds, the most widely applied ART being the cryopreservation of semen. However, the storage of frozen gametes of unknown fertility for long term is surely not a sustainable policy for the conservation programs of endangered species. The development of in vitro methods of testing sperm fertility would contribute considerably to conservation efforts. Sperm selection prior to AI could bring significant benefits in conservation breeding by improving sperm quality. Biomimetic technologies such as SLC (single layer centrifugation) have proven efficient in reducing viral titre and bacterial load in semen while improving routine and functional parameters such as motility, DNA integrity and acrosome integrity. Sperm selection has been applied successfully in conservation programs of different species such as Iberian Red Deer and grey wolves. We may conclude that biomimetic technologies represent a huge breakthrough in the sperm cryopreservation programs that will enable to obtain sperm cells with improved quality and higher longevity, therefore increasing the chances of obtaining off-springs from endangered species.

Keywords: Biomimetic technologies; Sperm selection; Endangered species

Available online on 10.09.2014     




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Volume 5, Issue 4, December 2014

Research articles

E. Al-Emam, M. El-Gohary, M. Abd El Hady

Investigations of Mural Paintings of Seti I and Ramesses II Temples at Abydos – Egypt

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF ]                  pp. 421-434
This paper provides technical studies on the mural paintings of two remarkable temples in Upper Egypt; namely the temples of Seti I and Ramesses II. It is the first one in a series of studies investigating these mural paintings and their deterioration aspects. Therefore, this study deals with the techniques used in performing these mural paintings, and their stratigraphical structure. Visual and optical examinations, scanning electron microscope attached to energy dispersive X-ray spectrometer (SEM/EDS), and X-ray diffraction (XRD) analyses are the methods used in this respect. These methods revealed that the murals of the two temples are characterized by their variable materials and techniques. Firstly, the ancient artist carved the scenes, in some cases, directly on the stone and used in this sunk reliefs, raised reliefs, and a combination of them, while in others he applied a rendering layer on these reliefs. Also, in one case he applied the rendering on the wall without reliefs. Secondly, he used the tempera technique in all the paintings. Thirdly, both of limestone and sandstone were used as a support for the murals. The mortar sample was mainly composed of gypsum, lime and sand. All the rendering samples contained gypsum and lime with different amounts of sand, while just two samples showed the presence of clay in addition to gypsum and lime that were arranged in layers in a unique form.

Keywords: Abydos; Mural paintings; Stratigraphical structure; Optical microscopy; SEM/EDS; XRD


M. Stavroulaki, A. Papalou

Parametric Analysis of Old Multi-Leaf Masonry Walls

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 435-446
A parametric study of multi-leaf masonry walls subjected to static loading conditions is presented. Linear and nonlinear analysis is performed on multi-leaf walls with varying dimensions using the finite element method. The multi-leaf walls are subjected to shear and compressive static loads assuming perfect bonding between different leaves. The response of the wall to static loads depends on the physical properties of the wall itself as well as the type of loading applied. The modulus of elasticity affects considerably the response of the structure. The length of the inner leaf does not play an important role on the response of the structure to static loads.

Keywords: Parametric analysis; three-leaf wall; multi-leaf wall; historic masonries; restoration of historic walls


A. Gharib, F.S. Madkour

The Treatment Procedures of Persian Metallic Objects Covered with Colored Enamels, 18th - 20th Centuries AD

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 447-458
This work presents a case study on conservation of highly two deteriorated archaeological silver and copper objects covered with colored enamel. These objects exhibited at the museum of the faculty of applied arts, Helwan University- Egypt and they date back to Qajar dynasty in Persia from 1794 to 1925. The objects suffered from many deterioration phenomena including; corrosion products of copper and silver on the interior surfaces of two objects furthermore, some parts of colored enamel were fragile and some were missing on the exterior surfaces. The aim of the present paper is to study the chemical and the mineralogical composition of the corrosion products of copper and silver, as well as carry out different restoration and treatment processes to the objects. Different analytical and investigation techniques were used including; X-ray diffraction (XRD) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM) coupled with energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDS) to study several samples of metals, corrosion products and colored enamel. Restoration treatments processes were carried out on the two objects comprising; mechanical, chemical cleaning and replacement of the missing parts of enamels.

Keywords: Enamels; Qajar dynasty; Mineralogical composition; Corrosion products; Conservation; Cleaning; Replacement.


E. Osman, Y. Zidan, N. Kamal

Using the Microscopic and Spectroscopic Techniques to Identify and Characterize Archeological Artifacts

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 459-468
The aim of this work is the identification of the fiber type, degree of deterioration and of the natural dyes employed in the manufacture of some pieces of Egyptian Coptic textiles in order to help in its documentation and conservation. So, fibers from that Coptic fabric were analyzed using optical microscope and scanning electron microscope with energy –dispersive spectroscopy (EDS) to investigate the surface morphology of the object. X-ray diffraction (XRD) technique was used to define the damage degree of the artifact fibers. The results shows that the deterioration of the fibers is due to ageing. The investigation was completed by the vibrational characterization of indigo natural dye, which was detected by Fourier Transform Infra Red (FTIR) spectroscopy. The archeological fibers were identified as wool dyed with a natural dye (indigo) as the field literature suggests, with samples of this period. The archeological dye has the same characteristic bands as the modern indigo dye. Many metallic substances were detected which suggest the mordanting or the soil effect, accumulated on the ancient artifact. Characterizing the components of the ancient dyes and of the used fabric, could lead to an understanding of the reactions that deteriorate the ancient artifacts, which in turns helps the scientists, art historians and conservators to establish a more detailed data record, to evaluate the present condition of the object so they can restore the artifact properly.

Keywords: Coptic fabric; XRD; FTIR; SEM; OM; Archeological fibers; Conservation; Indigo dye.


A.M.A. Kamel, H.A.H. Marie, H.A. Mahmoud, M.F. Ali

Technical Examination and Restoration of the Stucco Decorations of al Hasawaty Mihrāb, Fatimid Period, Cairo, Egypt

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 469-478
Stucco mihrābs in Islamic buildings suffer from many causes of deterioration, mainly ground water and salt weathering, which have caused complete loss of the decorations of some stucco mihrābs and have left others in need of restoration and conservation, so finding a solution for this problem becomes ever more urgent. Al Hasawaty stucco mihrāb is an important monument, and is in serious need of restoration and conservation, which should be done in the light of examination and chemical analysis of the stucco material, support and degree of deterioration. The conservation and restoration of the stucco decoration involves the historical documentation of the Al Hasawaty Mausoleum, a condition survey, a measured survey, examination of the stucco decoration, the support and deterioration aspects. In addition the following are needed: mechanical and chemical cleaning, adhesion of detached parts of decorations, grout injection, replacement of the Portland cement plaster with porous lime plaster (disposable layer), mechanical strengthening with mortar and chemical treatment with a consolidant.

Keywords: Cleaning; Consolidation; Gypsum; Lime; Stucco; Deterioration; Mihrab

A.J. Cruz, C. Rego

Scientific Study of an 18th Century Portuguese Painting on Canvas and their Old Restoration: Problems of Date and Authenticity of the Current Image

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 479-492
A Portuguese painting of the 18th century, from the collection of the National Library of Portugal, restored in 1864, was studied with the aim of better understanding the practice of restoration in Portugal in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Initial observations suggested that it had been subjected to significant changes, due to the existence of an extensive decorative bar at the bottom of the painting and an inscription with calligraphy that seemed to suggest being of the 19th century. However, the scientific study carried out with the use of a set of analytical techniques leads to the conclusion that, essentially, the current image is consistent with the original image, although a thick layer of varnish and several localized repaints were observed. However, the inscription does not seem to be original.

Keywords: Painting; Restoration; History; Dating; Authenticity.

A. Hussain, S. Dasgupta, H.S. Bargali

Case of House Sparrow (Passer Domesticus) Population Decline: Role of Semi-Nomadic Pastoralist Community (Van Gujjars) in their Conservation

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 493-502
The house sparrow, Passer domesticus (Linnaeus, 1758) is closely associated with human habitations and cultivation from historic times. The house sparrow is distributed all over India up to 4000m in the Himalayas. Distribution of House sparrow is not uniform in the country, and in the recent years disappearing of sparrows is also reported from various parts of the world including India. But reliable information on sparrow populations is not available. Less work has been carried out actually for counting and keeping a record of the sparrows. This article summarizes the possible decline in its population through literature review in many parts of the world including India. Several studies carried on house sparrow have cited varied reasons for their decline. So this article also summarized the possible cause and threats for the decline in population. This article compares the role of semi nomadic pastoralist community for conservation of house sparrow with secondary literature. We also tried to suggest the various activities for resolving the issues related with conservation of house sparrow.

Keywords: Van Gujjar; Relocation; Settlements; House Sparrow; Conservation.

H. Laizer, T.M.C. Tarimo, B. Kisui

Demography of Lions (Panthera Leo) in Tarangire National Park, Tanzania

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 503-510
Tarangire lions reveal similar population characteristics to most of other lion populations in other protected areas in Africa. Tarangire lion population was estimated to be around 155 individuals as in June 2013 based on individual identification facilitated by the use of Radio telemetry coupled with the use of GPS to get information on individual lions within a specific pride to determine their location and characteristics. The population had a density of 7.5 lions per 100 square kilometers. The sex ratio was 1 male to 1.2 females more in favor of females but cubs had a sex ratio of 1 male to 1 female. The age composition was dominated by pre-reproductive age class (cubs and sub-adults), which constitutes 63.9% of the whole population. There was a total of 9 prides residing the park, the number of lions in the pride ranges from 2-38 individuals with the mean of 17.2 individuals. Cub survival was high with the average of 70.8% of all cubs born survived to year one. The overall population trend shows declining curve which suggests more conservation efforts are needed to make it stable.

Keywords: African lion; Cub; Pride and Sex ratio;Age composition.

G. Mandal, S.P. Joshi

Quantitative Vegetation Dynamics and Invasion Success of Lantana Camara from the Tropical Forests of Doon Valley

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 511-526
Structure, composition and function are the three important attributes of forest ecosystems. These attributes change in response to climate, topography, soil and disturbances. The above mentioned factors along with forest succession are also responsible for both local and landscape level variations in forest ecosystems. The present study aimed to analyse the quantitative vegetation dynamics and diversity of plants from the dry deciduous forests and fallow lands of Doon Valley. Forest sites were chosen from three extreme end of the valley and other sites were selected according to the level of variations to study species richness, regeneration and change in community composition in the context of overstorey structure and invasion success of a non native invasive species Lantana camara employing nested quadrat method. Change in community composition has taken place with Shorea robusta as the main dominant and Mallotus philippensis, Syzygium cumini and Ehretia laevis becoming co – dominant tree species in all community; this association is new for these forests. Effect of overstorey structure was noticeable, highest species richness and diversity was increasing with a decrease in tree density and basal area. Lantana camara over past few years has become a threat to the western Himalayan forests. On the basis of IVI (Importance Value Index) assessment it is clear that Lantana is profusely growing in all types of habitats, on the other hand the invasion of other plant species is restricted to their suitable habitats. The invasion success of Lantana was found depending on forest gap size as gap size was significantly correlated to the inflorescence, infructescence and pollinator visitors.

Keywords: Phytodiversity; Importance Value Index (IVI); Invasive Alien Species (IAS), Vegetation Ecology; Biological invasion; Biodiversity measurement

S. Dimri, P. Baluni, C.M. Sharma

Growing Stock of Various Broad-Leaved and Conifer Forests of Garhwal Himalaya

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 527-534
The present study was undertaken to assess the Growing Stock and Population Structure of ten temperate forest types of Garhwal Himalaya between 1200-3000m asl. Five sample-plots of 0.1 ha were randomly laid out at two sites (I and II) in each forest type to estimate the GSVD (Growing Stock Volume Density) (by using appropriate volume tables and volume equations). The GSVD values in different forest types oscillated between 198.78 m3/ha (for Quercus glauca) to 907.74 m3/ha (for Cedrus deodara forest). The density-diameter distribution was calculated to understand the pattern of Regeneration status of the forest type. Quercus floribunda forest type was recorded as the most dense forest with 710ind/ha (Site I) and 790 ind/ha (Site II). Analysis of Growing stock and density of particular forest type plays an important role in forest management and proper strategies for the conservation of the forests. GSVD estimation leads to quantification of biomass, which in turn is essential to assess the amount of carbon stored in the forest. The estimation of GSVD has, therefore assumed significance in estimating climate change scenario.

Keywords: Biomass; Temperate forests; Carbon storage; Density.

B.B. Shresth, X. Meng

Spring Habitat Preference, Association and Threats of Himalayan Musk Deer (Moschus Leucogaster) in Gaurishankar Conservation Area, Nepal

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 535-546
This study conducted in Gaurishankar Conservation Area, Nepal aimed to determine the habitat preferred by musk deer during spring season, assess biophysical factors associated with the musk deer habitat and identify the current conservation threats prevalent in the area. We randomly selected 69 quadrates representing all the habitat types and recorded all biophysical variable related to musk deer habitat. Our study revealed that musk deer mostly preferred to inhabit in the mixed forest but avoid alpine scrub during spring season. Habitat types, fuelwood and timber cutting, rock cover, litter cover and distance to settlements affected on selecting the habitat of musk deer. Unlike species composition of trees and forbs, the certain species of shrubs was mostly associated with habitat of musk deer. Poaching and human induced habitat alterations were the main causes for reducing population of musk deer.

Keywords: Habitat preference; Plant composition; Poaching; Musk deer; Nepal.

B.O. Adetola, A.O. Adetoro

Threats to Biodiversity Conservation in Cross River National Park, Nigeria

[ Abstract ]
[ Full Article - PDF]                  pp. 547-552
Cross River National Park (CRNP) is a naturally endowed “biodiversity hotspot” with diverse resources ranging from picturesque topography, rivers, fauna and flora. However, the rate of illegal activities in the park is posing serious threats to these resources. This study investigated different forms of threats facing biodiversity conservation in the park between 1991 and 2012. The study revealed that logging, fishing/water poisoning, illegal entry and collection of Non Timber Forest Products (NTFP) were the common forms of threats in the park. Logging was ranked as the major threat to biodiversity conservation in the park by 42.05% of the respondents, while illegal entry posed the least threat (2.27%). Management constraints identified as threats to biodiversity conservation were inadequate funding, inadequate patrol equipment, unmotivated staff (poor salary) and inadequate support from communities bordering the park. The highest arrest of poachers (79) was recorded in 2008. Implications of these threats are loss of habitat, reduction in fauna resources amongst others.

Keywords: Threats; Biodiversity; Poachers; Conservation; Cross River National Park.

Book review

Suzanne Alwash

Eden Again: Hope in the Marshes of Iraq [Full Article - PDF] p. 553

Publication date 15.12.2014     




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