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Genetic differentiation and phylogeography of roe deer in Spain, as suggested by mitochondrial DNA and microsatellite analysis

AuthorsLorenzini, Rita; San José, Cristina; Braza, Francisco ; Aragón, Santiago
KeywordsRoe deer
Mitochondrial DNA
genetic differentiation
Issue Date2003
PublisherTaylor & Francis
CitationItalian Journal of Zoology, 70: 79-89 (2003)
AbstractCurrent population structure patterns of roe deer Capreolus capreolus in Spain were assessed through the analysis of mitochondrial and nuclear DNA. Restriction fragment length polymorphism was detected in the D‐loop and NADH‐dehydrogenase ND1 segments of mitochondrial DNA. Nuclear variation was investigated using 12 microsatellite loci. A total of 126 roe deer were analysed from fourteen sampling sites across the Iberian peninsula, including the Andalusian population from Sierra de Cádiz, which represents the southwestern limit of the distribution of C. capreolus. Results from both mitochondrial and microsatellite variation revealed a considerable level of structuring for roe deer populations throughout the Spanish range. In particular, evidence was provided from mtDNA of a genetic differentiation of roe deer populations in northern Spain from those occurring in southern areas, with a particular distinctiveness of the Andalusian roe deer. Concordant results were obtained from classical clustering analysis based on microsatellite loci. Furthermore, a Bayesian approach to microsatellite data proved more efficiently that northern roe deer are in turn genetically heterogenous, comprising at least three subpopulations. The phylogeographic pattern suggests a history of long‐term isolation of the two main groups of roe deer populations, possibly as a consequence of the climatic changes in the Late Pleistocene. The occurrence of two genetic lineages calls for different strategies of conservation and management of this species in the Iberian Peninsula, according to the geographic distribution of populations.
Publisher version (URL)http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/11250000309356500
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