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Nonequilibrium Conditions Explain Spatial Variability in Genetic Structuring of Little Penguin (Eudyptula minor)

Burridge, CP; Peucker, AJ; Valautham, SK; Styan, CA; Dann, P; (2015) Nonequilibrium Conditions Explain Spatial Variability in Genetic Structuring of Little Penguin (Eudyptula minor). Journal of Heredity , 106 (3) pp. 228-237. 10.1093/jhered/esv009. Green open access

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Abstract

Factors responsible for spatial structuring of population genetic variation are varied, and in many instances there may be no obvious explanations for genetic structuring observed, or those invoked may reflect spurious correlations. A study of little penguins (Eudyptula minor) in southeast Australia documented low spatial structuring of genetic variation with the exception of colonies at the western limit of sampling, and this distinction was attributed to an intervening oceanographic feature (Bonney Upwelling), differences in breeding phenology, or sea level change. Here, we conducted sampling across the entire Australian range, employing additional markers (12 microsatellites and mitochondrial DNA, 697 individuals, 17 colonies). The zone of elevated genetic structuring previously observed actually represents the eastern half of a genetic cline, within which structuring exists over much shorter spatial scales than elsewhere. Colonies separated by as little as 27 km in the zone are genetically distinguishable, while outside the zone, homogeneity cannot be rejected at scales of up to 1400 km. Given a lack of additional physical or environmental barriers to gene flow, the zone of elevated genetic structuring may reflect secondary contact of lineages (with or without selection against interbreeding), or recent colonization and expansion from this region. This study highlights the importance of sampling scale to reveal the cause of genetic structuring.

Type: Article
Title: Nonequilibrium Conditions Explain Spatial Variability in Genetic Structuring of Little Penguin (Eudyptula minor)
Location: United States
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1093/jhered/esv009
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jhered/esv009
Additional information: © The American Genetic Association 2015. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/ by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted reuse, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited
Keywords: colonization, hybridization, isolation by distance, seabird, secondary contact, tension zone, Animals, Australia, DNA, Mitochondrial, Genetic Variation, Genetics, Population, Haplotypes, Microsatellite Repeats, Spatial Analysis, Spheniscidae
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science > Engineering Science Faculty Office
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1464815
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