Integrating microsatellite DNA markers and otolith geochemistry to assess population structure of European hake (Merluccius merluccius)
Tanner, Susanne E.
Thorrold, Simon R.
Cabral, Henrique N.
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Population structure and natal origins of European hake were investigated using microsatellite DNA markers and otolith geochemistry data. Five microsatellites were sequenced and otolith core geochemical composition was determined from age-1 hake collected in the northeast Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea. Microsatellites provided evidence of a major genetic split in the vicinity of the Strait of Gibraltar, separating the Atlantic and the Mediterranean populations, with the exception of the Gulf of Cádiz. Based on classification models using otolith core geochemical values individuals’ natal origins were identified, although with an increased error rate. Coupling genotype and otolith data increased classification accuracy of individuals to their potential natal origins while providing evidence of movement between the northern and southern stock units in the Atlantic Ocean. Information obtained by the two natural markers on population structure of European hake was complementary as the two markers act at different spatio-temporal scales. Otolith geochemistry provides information over an ecological time frame and on a fine spatial scale, while microsatellite DNA markers report on gene flow over evolutionary time scales and therefore act on a broader spatio-temporal resolution. Thus, this study confirmed the usefulness of otolith geochemistry to complement the assessment of early life stage dispersal in populations with high gene flow and low genetic divergence.
Author Posting. © The Author(s), 2014. This is the author's version of the work. It is posted here by permission of Elsevier for personal use, not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Estuarine, Coastal and Shelf Science 142 (2014): 68-75, doi:10.1016/j.ecss.2014.03.010.
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