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Abstract Detail

Population Genetics

Hodel, Richard [1], Soltis, Pamela [2], Soltis, Douglas [3].

Phylogeography and conservation genetics of two Neotropical mangrove species.

Populations of many diverse coastal animal species show significant genetic differentiation between the Gulf and Atlantic Coasts of Florida, with a pronounced phylogeographic break at the southern tip of Florida. The phylogeographic discontinuity may be the result of isolation caused by changes in the Florida peninsula as the climate oscillated during cycles of glacial advance and retreat. Whereas the phylogeography of coastal animal species in Florida has been well studied, virtually no coastal plants have been similarly investigated. Red (Rhizophora mangle, Rhizophoraceae) and black (Avicennia germinans, Acanthaceae) mangroves co-occur throughout the Neotropics. In many areas, these two species inhabit neighboring microhabitats; red mangroves are found at lower elevations closer to the water, while black mangroves are found at slightly higher elevations and a few meters further inland. Mangroves provide habitat to many marine and coastal species and are able to mitigate some of the detrimental results of global climate change, such as sea level rise and increasingly severe storm surges during hurricanes. Protecting these mangrove species and effectively restoring degraded coastal habitats must become conservation priorities. Significantly, restoration efforts are more effective when local propagules are used to restore degraded habitats. We evaluate the intraspecific genetic diversity within and among populations of both of these mangrove species in Florida. We sampled 10 individuals from each of 20 populations (10 on the Atlantic Coast of Florida, 10 on the Gulf Coast), extracted DNA from each individual, and used 10-20 previously developed microsatellite markers to genotype each individual. In combination with geographical data associated with each population, we use the microsatellite genotyping results to reconstruct the evolutionary history of each species. Knowledge about genetic differentiation within and among populations of these two species will allow us to conserve these species efficiently and in a scientifically sound manner. Our initial results based on microsatellite genotyping show little genetic structure among populations or between the coasts of Florida.

Broader Impacts:

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1 - University of Florida, Biology Department, PO Box 118525, Gainesville, Florida, 32611, United States
2 - University of Florida, Florida Museum of Natural History, PO BOX 117800, Gainesville, FL, 32611-7800, USA
3 - University of Florida, Biology and Florida Museum of Natural History, Gainesville, FL, 32605, USA

population genetics
conservation genetics
maritime discontinuity
coastal degradation.

Presentation Type: Oral Paper:Papers for Topics
Session: 40
Location: Marlborough B/Riverside Hilton
Date: Wednesday, July 31st, 2013
Time: 11:15 AM
Number: 40010
Abstract ID:572
Candidate for Awards:Margaret Menzel Award

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