Utilization of Molecular Markers to Examine Potential Hybridization in Bluehead Suckers (Catostomus discobolus) in the Weber River, UT

Max Bangs, Marlis Douglas, Michael Douglas

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Abstract

Fishes of the desert Southwest face numerous anthropogenic threats including introduction of invasive species, habitat modifications, and recent climate change driven drought. Continuous, long-term monitoring (to include genetic evaluation) of threatened taxa provides important baseline data to develop management plans. However, accurate assessments can be inhibited if species identifications are ambiguous due to hybridization. Level of admixture (e.g., hybridization or introgression) is generally difficult to quantify without employing molecular genetic techniques. The Bluehead Sucker (Catostomus discobolus), endemic to the Colorado River, Upper Snake, and Bonneville basins, has experienced drastic declines throughout its range. In addition, hybridization with both native and introduced species may further jeopardize persistence of locally adapted lineages. One such example is Bluehead Sucker in the Weber River, UT (Bonneville Basin), where the species is of conservation concern and hybridization has been recognized as an issue. We tested 50 samples phenotypically identified as either pure or introgressed Bluehead Sucker for admixed ancestry by sequencing several bi-allelic nuclear (nDNA) loci and one mitochondrial (mtDNA) locus. We were able to not only confirm introgression, but also characterize parental species involved in the admixture. Our results have important management implications and will help in the development of conservation plan for the species
Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publication2013 Joint Meeting of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists, 10-15 July, 2013 Albuquerque, New Mexico
Pages33
StatePublished - 2013

Keywords

  • INHS

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    Bangs, M., Douglas, M., & Douglas, M. (2013). Utilization of Molecular Markers to Examine Potential Hybridization in Bluehead Suckers (Catostomus discobolus) in the Weber River, UT. In 2013 Joint Meeting of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists, 10-15 July, 2013 Albuquerque, New Mexico (pp. 33)