Journal article

Wildlife conservation in a fragmented landscape: the Eurasian red squirrel on the Isle of Wight

Emilie A Hardouin, Helen Butler, Marin Cvitanovic, Rainer G Ulrich, Vanessa Schulze, Anna-Katarina Schilling, Peter WW Lurz, Anna Meredith, Kathy H Hodder



Island populations may have a higher extinction risk due to reduced genetic diversity and need to be managed effectively in order to reduce the risk of biodiversity loss. The Eurasian red squirrels (Sciurus vulgaris) in the south of England only survive on three islands (the Isle of Wight, Brownsea and Furzey islands), with the Isle of Wight harbouring the largest population in the region. Fourteen microsatellites were used to determine the genetic structure of red squirrel populations on the Isle of Wight, as well as their relatedness to other populations of the species. Our results demonstrated that squirrels on these islands were less genetically diverse than those in Continental mainland..

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University of Melbourne Researchers