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MtDNA population structure and gene flow in lingcod (Ophiodon elongatus): limited connectivity despite long-lived pelagic larvae
Marko, P.B.; Rogers-Bennett, L.; Dennis, A.B. (2007). MtDNA population structure and gene flow in lingcod (Ophiodon elongatus): limited connectivity despite long-lived pelagic larvae. Mar. Biol. (Berl.) 150(6): 1301-1311.
In: Marine Biology. Springer: Heidelberg; Berlin. ISSN 0025-3162, more
Peer reviewed article  

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  • Marko, P.B.
  • Rogers-Bennett, L.
  • Dennis, A.B.

    Lingcod, Ophiodon elongatus Girard, have a 3-month pelagic larval stage and are an important recreational and commercial species on the west coast of North America. Cytochrome-c oxidase I sequences from tissue samples were used to characterize population structure and infer patterns of gene flow from California to Alaska. No significant genetic structure was found when estimates of Wright’s F ST (i.e., FST) were generated among all populations sampled. Nesting populations within regions, however, indicated that the inner coast of Washington State is distinct, a result corroborating previous allozyme work. Coalescent-based estimates of gene flow indicate that although migration can be high from an evolutionary perspective, nearly half of all comparisons among populations showed no gene flow in at least one direction. From an ecological perspective, moderate migration rates (Nm < 10) among most populations provide surprisingly limited connectivity at large (~ 1,000 km) and small (~100 km) spatial scales. Coalescent-based estimates also show that gene flow between the inner and the outer coasts is asymmetric, a result consistent with prevailing surface currents. Because the expected inter-locus variances for coalescent-based estimates of gene flow are likely large, future work will benefit from analyses of nuclear DNA markers. However, limited demographic connectivity on large spatial scales may help explain why stock recovery has been uneven, with greater recovery in the northern (87% rebuilt) than in the southern (24% rebuilt) fishery region, supporting a regional management strategy. These results suggest that despite a 3-month pelagic larval stage, some areas may be effectively closed with respect to both population dynamics and fishery management issues.

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