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Genetic structure and sex-biased dispersal of a declining cooperative-breeder, the Grey-crowned Babbler, Pomatostomus temporalis, at the southern edge of its range

Stevens, Kate P, Harrisson, Katherine A, Clarke, Rohan H, Cooke, Raylene and Hogan, Fiona E 2016, Genetic structure and sex-biased dispersal of a declining cooperative-breeder, the Grey-crowned Babbler, Pomatostomus temporalis, at the southern edge of its range, Emu: Austral Ornithology, vol. 116, no. 4, pp. 323-332, doi: 10.1071/MU15096.

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Title Genetic structure and sex-biased dispersal of a declining cooperative-breeder, the Grey-crowned Babbler, Pomatostomus temporalis, at the southern edge of its range
Author(s) Stevens, Kate P
Harrisson, Katherine A
Clarke, Rohan H
Cooke, Raylene
Hogan, Fiona E
Journal name Emu: Austral Ornithology
Volume number 116
Issue number 4
Start page 323
End page 332
Total pages 10
Publisher CSIRO Publishing
Place of publication Melbourne, VIC.
Publication date 2016
ISSN 0158-4197
Keyword(s) corridors
functional connectivity
genetic diversity
habitat fragmentation
isolation-by-distance
regions
Summary Loss and fragmentation of habitat can disrupt genetic exchange between populations, which is reflected in changes to the genetic structure of populations. The Grey-crowned Babbler (Pomatostomus temporalis) is a cooperatively breeding woodland bird, once common and widespread in south-eastern Australia. The species has suffered population declines of >90% across its southern distribution as a result of loss and fragmentation of habitat. We investigated patterns of genetic diversity and population structure of Grey-crowned Babblers in fragmented habitats at the southernmost extent of its range. We sampled blood from 135 individual Babblers from 39 groups stratified into six subpopulations in three regions. Genotypic data were used to estimate genetic diversity, population substructure, local relatedness and dispersal patterns. Individuals showed high heterozygosity within regions, and varying numbers of private alleles among regions suggested differences in levels of connectivity between regions. Four genetic clusters revealed population substructure consistent with treeless landscapes acting as strong barriers to gene flow. In contrast to previous studies,we identified a male-biased dispersal pattern and significant isolation-by-distance patterns for females at fine spatial scales. We recommend that conservation plans for this species incorporate opportunities to increase and enhance corridor areas to facilitate genetic exchange among subpopulations.
Language eng
DOI 10.1071/MU15096
Field of Research 050202 Conservation and Biodiversity
060202 Community Ecology (excl Invasive Species Ecology)
060899 Zoology not elsewhere classified
Socio Economic Objective 970106 Expanding Knowledge in the Biological Sciences
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
ERA Research output type C Journal article
Copyright notice ©2016, CSIRO Publishing
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30088640

Document type: Journal Article
Collection: School of Life and Environmental Sciences
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