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Genetic rescue in a severely inbred wolf population

Åkesson, Mikael LU ; Liberg, Olof; Sand, Håkan; Wabakken, Petter; Bensch, Staffan LU and Flagstad, Øystein (2016) In Molecular Ecology 25(19). p.4745-4756
Abstract

Natural populations are becoming increasingly fragmented which is expected to affect their viability due to inbreeding depression, reduced genetic diversity and increased sensitivity to demographic and environmental stochasticity. In small and highly inbred populations, the introduction of only a few immigrants may increase vital rates significantly. However, very few studies have quantified the long-term success of immigrants and inbred individuals in natural populations. Following an episode of natural immigration to the isolated, severely inbred Scandinavian wolf (Canis lupus) population, we demonstrate significantly higher pairing and breeding success for offspring to immigrants compared to offspring from native, inbred pairs. We... (More)

Natural populations are becoming increasingly fragmented which is expected to affect their viability due to inbreeding depression, reduced genetic diversity and increased sensitivity to demographic and environmental stochasticity. In small and highly inbred populations, the introduction of only a few immigrants may increase vital rates significantly. However, very few studies have quantified the long-term success of immigrants and inbred individuals in natural populations. Following an episode of natural immigration to the isolated, severely inbred Scandinavian wolf (Canis lupus) population, we demonstrate significantly higher pairing and breeding success for offspring to immigrants compared to offspring from native, inbred pairs. We argue that inbreeding depression is the underlying mechanism for the profound difference in breeding success. Highly inbred wolves may have lower survival during natal dispersal as well as competitive disadvantage to find a partner. Our study is one of the first to quantify and compare the reproductive success of first-generation offspring from migrants vs. native, inbred individuals in a natural population. Indeed, our data demonstrate the profound impact single immigrants can have in small, inbred populations, and represent one of very few documented cases of genetic rescue in a population of large carnivores.

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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
Canis lupus, genetic rescue, heterozygosity, immigration, inbreeding, inbreeding depression
in
Molecular Ecology
volume
25
issue
19
pages
12 pages
publisher
Wiley-Blackwell
external identifiers
  • Scopus:84988926685
ISSN
0962-1083
DOI
10.1111/mec.13797
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
eefc825d-1b4b-4502-b77e-8a1a8b957245
date added to LUP
2016-10-17 12:09:06
date last changed
2016-10-17 13:28:19
@misc{eefc825d-1b4b-4502-b77e-8a1a8b957245,
  abstract     = {<p>Natural populations are becoming increasingly fragmented which is expected to affect their viability due to inbreeding depression, reduced genetic diversity and increased sensitivity to demographic and environmental stochasticity. In small and highly inbred populations, the introduction of only a few immigrants may increase vital rates significantly. However, very few studies have quantified the long-term success of immigrants and inbred individuals in natural populations. Following an episode of natural immigration to the isolated, severely inbred Scandinavian wolf (Canis lupus) population, we demonstrate significantly higher pairing and breeding success for offspring to immigrants compared to offspring from native, inbred pairs. We argue that inbreeding depression is the underlying mechanism for the profound difference in breeding success. Highly inbred wolves may have lower survival during natal dispersal as well as competitive disadvantage to find a partner. Our study is one of the first to quantify and compare the reproductive success of first-generation offspring from migrants vs. native, inbred individuals in a natural population. Indeed, our data demonstrate the profound impact single immigrants can have in small, inbred populations, and represent one of very few documented cases of genetic rescue in a population of large carnivores.</p>},
  author       = {Åkesson, Mikael and Liberg, Olof and Sand, Håkan and Wabakken, Petter and Bensch, Staffan and Flagstad, Øystein},
  issn         = {0962-1083},
  keyword      = {Canis lupus,genetic rescue,heterozygosity,immigration,inbreeding,inbreeding depression},
  language     = {eng},
  month        = {10},
  number       = {19},
  pages        = {4745--4756},
  publisher    = {ARRAY(0xb6506f0)},
  series       = {Molecular Ecology},
  title        = {Genetic rescue in a severely inbred wolf population},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/mec.13797},
  volume       = {25},
  year         = {2016},
}