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Human Impacts on Drainages of the Mesa Central, Mexico, and Its Genetic Effects on an Endangered Fish, Zoogoneticus quitzeoensis

AuthorsDomínguez-Domínguez, Omar; Boto, Luis CSIC ORCID ; Alda, Fernando CSIC ORCID CVN; Pérez-Ponce de León, Gerardo; Doadrio, Ignacio
KeywordsConservation units
genetic diversity
human impacts
Mexican fishes
Issue Date2007
CitationConservation Biology 21: 168-180(2007)
AbstractThe Mesa Central of Mexico is of special conservation interest due to its high richness of freshwater fish species, of which the goodeines are one of the most representative groups. Through an integrated approach, we determined conservation priorities for goodeine populations. We based our recommendations on the genetic diversity (variation in five microsatellite DNA loci) in 10 populations of Zoogoneticus quitzeoensis and on an analysis of ecological (e.g., presence of exotic species), social (e.g., political situation), and environmental (e.g., pollution) information for 52 historical occurrence points for species in the genus Zoogoneticus. Patterns of genetic erosion and genetic diversity indices were closely associated with human impact. Recent bottleneck events were most evident in the populations from remnants of the lakes drained at the beginning of the twentieth century. We identified seven operational conservation units (OCUs), all of which should be conserved because they contain unique portions of the total variation of the species. Special attention needs to be given to increase genetic variability, recover population sizes, and reestablish contact among populations within OCUs. It is imperative to create an integrative and effective approach for the recovery and conservation of the freshwater fish diversity of Central Mexico that is based on social and natural sciences.
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