Genetic diversity and connectivity in a brooding reef coral at the limit of its distribution
Annika ME Noreen, Peter L Harrison, Madeleine JH Van Oppen
Proceedings of the Royal Society B | ROYAL SOC | Published : 2009
Remote populations are predicted to be vulnerable owing to their isolation from potential source reefs, and usually low population size and associated increased extinction risk. We investigated genetic diversity, population subdivision and connectivity in the brooding reef coral Seriatopora hystrix at the limits of its Eastern Australian (EA) distribution and three sites in the southern Great Barrier Reef (GBR). Over the approximately 1270 km survey range, high levels of population subdivision were detected (global F(ST) = 0.224), with the greatest range in pairwise F(ST) values observed among the three southernmost locations: Lord Howe Island, Elizabeth Reef and Middleton Reef. Flinders Ree..View full abstract
This project was funded by an International Society of Reef Studies/The Ocean Conservation Fellowship to A. M. E. N. A. M. E. N. is supported by a Southern Cross University International Postgraduate Research Scholarship and Stipend. We thank Southern Cross University and the Australian Institute for Marine Science for institutional support, Paul Anderson (DEWHA) for providing the opportunity to do fieldwork at Elizabeth and Middleton Reefs, Simon Hartley (SCU) for diving assistance, Greg Luker (SCU) for producing the map, Lesa Peplow (AIMS) for laboratory support and the AIMS PopGen discussion group for comments on an early draft. The comments of two anonymous reviewers substantially improved this manuscript.