Evol Ecol Res 16: 91-99 (2014) Full PDF if your library subscribes.
Are recommendations for conservation informed by estimates of genetic divergence?
Heather R. Taft and Derek A. Roff
Department of Biology, University of California, Riverside, California, USA
Correspondence: D.A. Roff, Department of Biology, University of California, Riverside, CA 92521, USA.
Question: In studies on genetic divergence, does the divergence value co-vary with the recommended actions given in the paper’s conclusion?
Data incorporated: Articles from the journals Biological Conservation and Conservation Genetics published between 2007 and 2011 were reviewed for studies assessing genetic divergence that gave conservation recommendations for wild populations.
Analytical methods: We used a general linear model with recommendation as the response variable to test this question. We then used a step procedure to eliminate variables that did not contribute significantly to the AIC value. The final model was compared with the constant-only model to test for significance.
Conclusion: The majority of recommendations given in studies that include an analysis of genetic variation are informed by the divergence value estimated. However, the type of marker used and sample size, used here as a surrogate for estimation error, are significant factors influencing the recommendation. There is a high correlation between divergence values of nuclear and non-nuclear markers but recommendations appear to depend primarily on the analysis of nuclear markers.
Keywords: conservation genetics, FST, genetic divergence, management recommendation, neutral markers, population genetics.
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