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Genetic variation and population structure in the endangered Houston toad in contrast to its common sympatric relative, the coastal plain toad

Author: Diana J McHenry; Raymond D Semlitsch; Michael R J Forstner
Publisher: Columbia, Mo. : University of Missouri--Columbia, 2010.
Dissertation: Ph. D. University of Missouri--Columbia 2010
Edition/Format:   Thesis/dissertation : Document : Thesis/dissertation : eBook   Computer File : English
Summary:
I determined the number of populations, the levels of genetic diversity within and among populations, and migration/movement rates at the landscape and fine scales in the endangered Houston toad, Bufo houstonensis (Anura: Bufonidae) using mitochondrial sequence data and microsatellite loci. Genetic clustering analyses indicate nine populations across the range. The most divergent population was in Austin County,  Read more...
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Genre/Form: Electronic dissertations
Electronic books
Material Type: Document, Thesis/dissertation, Internet resource
Document Type: Internet Resource, Computer File
All Authors / Contributors: Diana J McHenry; Raymond D Semlitsch; Michael R J Forstner
OCLC Number: 727370933
Notes: Title from PDF of title page (University of Missouri--Columbia, viewed on Oct. 25, 2010).
The entire thesis text is included in the research.pdf file; the official abstract appears in the short.pdf file; a non-technical public abstract appears in the public.pdf file.
Dissertation advisor: Dr. Raymond D. Semlitsch and Dr. Michael R.J. Forstner.
Vita.
Description: 1 online resource (xii, 282 pages) : illustrations (some color)
Responsibility: by Diana J. McHenry.

Abstract:

I determined the number of populations, the levels of genetic diversity within and among populations, and migration/movement rates at the landscape and fine scales in the endangered Houston toad, Bufo houstonensis (Anura: Bufonidae) using mitochondrial sequence data and microsatellite loci. Genetic clustering analyses indicate nine populations across the range. The most divergent population was in Austin County, Texas. Genetic diversity was high across the range and within populations. I also examined population genetic structure and diversity in a common, sympatric congener, the coastal plain toad (Bufo nebulifer). Bufo houstonensis and B. nebulifer have comparable levels of genetic diversity, but B. nebulifer appears to migrate less frequently or over less distance than its endangered congener. Finally, I investigated the baseline levels of genetic admixture, or hybridization, in B. houstonensis. Admixture between B. houstonensis and two sympatric species (B. nebulifer and Bufo woodhousii) was detected. With continued habitat alteration and rising temperatures, both habitat isolation and offset breeding season have already partially broken down as isolating mechanisms and may deteriorate further; consequently, opportunities for hybridization events will increase. Conservation recommendations for B. houstonensis include supplementation programs to increase the number of individuals, preservation of all three habitat types (breeding/nursery, occupied, and dispersal), special attention towards the Austin County population, and involvement of the general public in conservation.

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SUCKEDALOT

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