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We conducted a population genetic analysis of the stalked kelp, Pterygophora californica, in the Santa Barbara Channel, California, USA. The results were compared with previous work on the genetic differentiation of giant kelp, Macrocystis pyrifera, in the same region. These two sympatric kelps share many life history and dispersal characteristics, but also differ in that dislodged P. californica does not produce floating rafts with buoyant fertile sporophytes, commonly observed for M. pyrifera. We used a comparative population genetic approach with these two species to test the hypothesis that the ability to produce floating rafts increases the genetic connectivity among kelp patches in the Santa Barbara Channel. We quantified the association of habitat continuity and oceanographic distance with the genetic differentiation observed in stalked kelp, like previously conducted for giant kelp. We compared both overall (across all patches) and pairwise (between patches) genetic differentiation. We found that oceanographic transit time, habitat continuity, and geographic distance were all associated with genetic connectivity in P. californica, supporting similar previous findings for M. pyrifera. Controlling for differences in heterozygosity between kelp species using Jost's D , we showed that global and pairwise differentiation were similar among patches between the two kelp species indicating that they have similar dispersal capabilities despite their differences in rafting ability. These results suggest that rafting sporophytes do not play a significant role in effective dispersal of M. pyrifera at ecologically relevant spatial and temporal scales.
This article was published in the following journal.
Name: Journal of phycology
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A genus of BROWN ALGAE in the family Lessoniaceae, and one of the major forms of KELP. The species Macrocystis pyrifera, also known as giant kelp, is the largest of the marine algae.
Ongoing scrutiny of a population (general population, study population, target population, etc.), generally using methods distinguished by their practicability, uniformity, and frequently their rapidity, rather than by complete accuracy.
Large, robust forms of brown algae (PHAEOPHYCEAE) in the order Laminariales. They are a major component of the lower intertidal and sublittoral zones on rocky coasts in temperate and polar waters. Kelp, a kind of SEAWEED, usually refers to species in the genera LAMINARIA or MACROCYSTIS, but the term may also be used for species in FUCUS or Nereocystis.
A method for analyzing and mapping differences in the copy number of specific genes or other large sequences between two sets of chromosomal DNA. It is used to look for large sequence changes such as deletions, duplications, or amplifications within the genomic DNA of an individual (with a tumor for example) or family members or population or between species.
Differences in measurable biological values, characteristics, or traits, among individuals of a population or between population groups.