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Population genetic structure in two neotropical tree species, Swietenia macrophylla King. and Tetragastris panamensis (Engl.) Kuntze.: the influence of life history traits

Heller, Thomas Mark. 2003 Population genetic structure in two neotropical tree species, Swietenia macrophylla King. and Tetragastris panamensis (Engl.) Kuntze.: the influence of life history traits. University of Edinburgh, Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, Masters Thesis, 83pp.

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Abstract/Summary

Genetic diversity in two economically valuable neotropical tree species was evaluated using AFLP markers. Two Costa Rican populations of Tetragastris panamensis were found to have relatively high levels of genetic diversity (Ht = 0.32; Hs = 0.30) and very little population differentiation (Fst = 0.06). One of these populations was analysed for fine-scale spatial genetic structure, revealing a small amount of significant structure. Such structure is likely to be strongly influenced by longer-distance seed dispersal by mammals, promoting gene flow. Two Belizean populations of Swietenia macrophylla were found to have strongly differing levels of genetic diversity. One population, East Botes, was found to have high levels of diversity (H = 0.38) and strong fine-scale spatial structure. The other, West Marimba, was found to have low levels of diversity (H = 0.17) and significant levels of spatial structure. Such difference is best explained by habitat heterogeneity affecting ecological processes or unidentified historical events. Data generated for T. panamensis and S. macrophylla were compared to AFLP data sets generated by the GENEO-TROPECO research programme, to identify which life-history traits are most important influences of genetic structure in neotropical tree species. The small number of species available for comparison obscured most trends, but seed dispersal and geographic range may be identified as possible strong factors.

Item Type: Publication - Thesis (Masters)
Programmes: CEH Programmes pre-2009 publications > Biodiversity
CEH Sections: Watt
NORA Subject Terms: Ecology and Environment
Date made live: 28 Jul 2009 15:27
URI: http://nora.nerc.ac.uk/id/eprint/7696

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