Shallow phylogeographic structuring of Vimba vimba across Europe suggests two distinct refugia during the last glaciation

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Genetic variation and geographical structuring of vimba Vimba vimba were analysed across 26 sites (80 individuals) by means of mtDNA sequences (cyt b gene, mitochondrial control region) to localize hypothesized glacial refugia and to reconstruct postglacial recoloniation routes. Although genetic diversity among sequenced individuals was low, a combined analysis of the two sequenced fragments revealed a western (central and northern Europe: Danube, Elbe and lakes of Sweden) and an eastern clade (eastern Europe: Dnieper–South Bug, Don, Neman). Furthermore, a number of divergent ancestral haplotypes distributed around the Black and Caspian Seas became apparent. Mismatch analyses supported a sudden expansion model for the populations of the western clade between 50 and 10 000bp. Overall, the study provides strong evidence for a northward and westward expansion of V. vimba from two refugial regions located in the Danubian drainage and the northern Pontic regions respectively.

Keywords: Pleistocene; Vimba vimba; freshwater fish; phylogeography; recolonization; refugia

Document Type: Regular Paper


Affiliations: 1: Department of Biological Sciences, University of Hull, Cottingham Road, Hull HU6 7RX, U.K. 2: Systematic Zoology, Faculty of Biology, Philipps Universität Marburg, Karl-von-Frisch Strasse 8, 35032 Marburg, Germany 3: Zoological Institute, Russian Academy of Sciences, Universitetskaya Embankment 1, 199034 St. Petersburg, Russia 4: Animal Ecology, Department of Ecology, Faculty of Biology, Philipps Universität Marburg, Karl-von-Frisch Strasse 8, 35032 Marburg, Germany

Publication date: December 1, 2009

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