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Genetic monitoring reveals two sympatric brown trout populations in a small mountain lake
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Zoology, Population Genetics.
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Zoology, Population Genetics.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-9286-3361
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Zoology, Population Genetics.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-3342-8479
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

It is contentious to what extent sympatric speciation represents a general and taxonomically widespread phenomenon. Documenting the occurrence of multiple, genetically distinct populations within areas lacking barriers to gene flow can increase our understanding of this type of speciation, because such populations are expected to represent the first steps of sympatric speciation. We analyzed the genetic relationships among over 4000 brown trout (Salmo trutta) collected during 19 sampling years from a series of small mountain lakes in northern Scandinavia. Our results clearly indicate the presence of two sympatric populations within these lakes. The populations are characterized by a high degree of genetic divergence coupled with a lack of apparent phenotypic dichotomy. The differentiation pattern appears stable over the two decades monitored, and the exchange of individuals between the two populations appears small. The existence of sympatric populations characterized by substantial genetic divergence may be a much more common phenomenon than anticipated, but difficult to detect in situations where morphological or ecological differentiation is missing. Larger samples than typically collected in a single sampling effort may be needed for revealing situations of sympatry, and for reliable estimation of the number of populations.

Keyword [en]
sympatric populations, heterozygote deficiency, salmonids, temporal genetics, cryptic populations
National Category
Biological Sciences
Research subject
Population Genetics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-42940OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-42940DiVA: diva2:352318
Available from: 2010-09-20 Created: 2010-09-20 Last updated: 2014-10-13Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Assessing and monitoring genetic patterns for conservation purposes with special emphasis on Scandinavia
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Assessing and monitoring genetic patterns for conservation purposes with special emphasis on Scandinavia
2010 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Genetic variation is essential for biological evolution, for maintaining viability of populations, and to ensure ecosystem resilience. Increased human exploitation and environmental change result in rapid loss of biological variation, including genetic diversity. Measures to halt this trend require that biological diversity is assessed and monitored. Assessment of biodiversity includes identifying patterns of distribution of genetic variation within individual species.

This thesis focuses on spatial genetic structure and assessment of units for conservation in continuous environments without apparent migration barriers. Empirical data refer to Scandinavia and the model species are northern pike (Esox lucius), brown trout (Salmo trutta), and harbour porpoise (Phocoena phocoena). Questions regarding monitoring genetic diversity and releases of alien populations are also addressed.

 The spatial genetic structure of the northern pike in the Baltic Sea is characterized by isolation by distance and continuous genetic change. Positive genetic correlation was found among pike within geographical distances of less than 150 km. This distance may be used to suggest management units in this area. For the brown trout, genetic monitoring identified two sympatric populations within a small mountain lake system. The situation is characterized by a clear genetic but no apparent phenotypic dichotomy. Scientific support for a genetically distinct Baltic harbour porpoise population is limited, and the spatial genetic structure of the harbour porpoise in Swedish waters needs to be clarified.

Data for launching conservation genetic monitoring programs is available for only a few Swedish species. Millions of forest trees, fish, and birds are released annually in Sweden and the documentation on these releases is poor. To meet responsibilities of safeguarding biodiversity and surveying biological effects of releases, there is an urgent need for studies aimed at evaluating genetic diversity.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Department of Zoology, Stockholm University, 2010. 61 p.
Keyword
biological diversity, conservation genetics, management unit, spatial genetic structure, sympatric populations, genetic monitoring, release of alien populations, northern pike, brown trout, harbour porpoise
National Category
Biological Sciences
Research subject
Population Genetics
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-42942 (URN)978-91-7447-130-4 (ISBN)
Public defence
2010-11-12, De Geer-salen, Geovetenskapens hus, Svante Arrhenius väg 14, Stockholm, 10:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Note
At the time of the doctoral defense, the following paper was unpublished and had a status as follows: Paper 2: Manuscript. Available from: 2010-10-21 Created: 2010-09-20 Last updated: 2010-10-15Bibliographically approved

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