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Microsatellites reveal clear genetic boundaries among Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar) populations from the Barents and White seas, northwest Russia

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Abstract:

Fourteen microsatellite loci were employed to study the genetic structure of 34 Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar) populations from the White and Barents seas area, the last major European region where the species has remained in its natural state. The populations were separated into four distinct clusters (Atlantic Ocean and western Barents Sea, Kola Peninsula, western White Sea, and eastern Barents Sea) within which genetic divergence varied between 0.02 and 0.10 as estimated with FST. When this structuring was contrasted with previously identified mtDNA-based groupings, a remarkable similarity was observed, implying that these four groups can be considered as a good starting point for defining management units in the region. Indeed, several approaches for assessing every population’s conservation value suggested that conservation of populations from each observed cluster would maximize preservation of the region’s genetic diversity. Furthermore, each unit may require differing management strategies, as distinct patterns of genetic diversity and divergence characteristics were detected. In addition, individual assignment success within a region was high (87%–96%), indicating that the data can be used as a baseline to differentiate individuals caught in offshore fisheries on a regional level with a relatively high degree of accuracy.

Quatorze locus microsatellites nous ont servi à étudier la structure génétique de 34 populations de saumons atlantiques (Salmo salar) des environs de la mer Blanche et de la mer de Barents, la dernière grande région d’Europe où l’espèce est demeurée dans son état naturel. Les populations se divisent en quatre regroupements distincts (Atlantique et mer de Barents occidentale, péninsule de Kola, mer Blanche occidentale et mer de Barents orientale) au sein desquels la divergence génétique, estimée par FST, varie de 0,02 à 0,10. Une comparaison de cette structure avec des groupements basés sur l’ADNmt identifiés précédemment montre une remarquable similarité, ce qui indique que ces quatre groupes forment un bon point de départ pour l’identification des unités de gestion dans la région. En effet, plusieurs méthodes utilisées pour évaluer la valeur de conservation de chaque population indiquent que la conservation de populations de chaque groupement observé permettrait de maximiser la conservation de la diversité génétique dans la région. De plus, il se peut que chaque unité nécessite des stratégies de gestion différentes puisqu’on détecte des patrons distincts de diversité génétique et des caractéristiques de divergence particulières. Enfin, le succès de l’attribution des individus à un groupement particulier est élevé (87%– 96%) dans une même région, ce qui indique que nos données peuvent servir de base pour l’identification des individus récoltés dans les pêches du large avec un degré relativement élevé d’exactitude à l’échelle régionale.

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: May 1, 2009

More about this publication?
  • Published continuously since 1901 (under various titles), this monthly journal is the primary publishing vehicle for the multidisciplinary field of aquatic sciences. It publishes perspectives (syntheses, critiques, and re-evaluations), discussions (comments and replies), articles, and rapid communications, relating to current research on cells, organisms, populations, ecosystems, or processes that affect aquatic systems. The journal seeks to amplify, modify, question, or redirect accumulated knowledge in the field of fisheries and aquatic science. Occasional supplements are dedicated to single topics or to proceedings of international symposia.
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