Measuring connectivity of invasive stoat populations to inform conservation management

A. Veale, Dianne GLEESON, Mick Clout

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    2 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Context. Effective design of conservation management programs for long-term population control requires an accurate definition of the spatial extent of populations, along with a proper understanding of the ways that landscape patchiness influences demography and dispersal within these populations. Aims. In the present study, genetic techniques are used to describe the population genetic structure and connectivity of invasive stoats (Mustela erminea) across the Auckland region, New Zealand, so as to assist planning for mainland stoat control, and define potential future eradication units. Methods. Asample of stoats from across the region (n = 120), was genotyped at 17 microsatellite loci, and a combination of clustering, genetic population assignment and various migration estimation methods were applied to these data. Key results. Moderate population structure was observed (FST = 0.03–0.21), with five geographic populations defined by genetic clustering. Almost all individuals were correctly assigned to the location of origin, and recent migration rates among forest patches were found to be low. Conclusions. It is possible to define the origin of stoats at this regional scale using genetic measures. From this, we show that the stoat incursion on Rangitoto Island that occurred post-eradication in 2010 probably came from East Auckland (P <0.0001), whereas the 2014 stoat incursion on Motutapu Island probably originated from a population linked to the Waitakeres. Also, the Waiheke Island stoat population has minimal connection to all other populations and it is therefore a potential eradication unit. Implications. The low migration rates among forest patches indicated that if thorough control is imposed on a discrete forest patch, reinvasion from other forest patches will be relatively low. Importantly, for stoat control in the region, the isolation of the Waiheke Island stoat population means that eradication here is likely to be feasible with low reinvasion pressure.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)395-406
    Number of pages12
    JournalWildlife Research
    Volume41
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2014

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    Mustela erminea
    conservation management
    connectivity
    population genetics
    patchiness
    estimation method
    demography
    genetic structure
    population structure
    low pressure
    measuring
    planning
    methodology
    rate
    microsatellite repeats

    Cite this

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    title = "Measuring connectivity of invasive stoat populations to inform conservation management",
    abstract = "Context. Effective design of conservation management programs for long-term population control requires an accurate definition of the spatial extent of populations, along with a proper understanding of the ways that landscape patchiness influences demography and dispersal within these populations. Aims. In the present study, genetic techniques are used to describe the population genetic structure and connectivity of invasive stoats (Mustela erminea) across the Auckland region, New Zealand, so as to assist planning for mainland stoat control, and define potential future eradication units. Methods. Asample of stoats from across the region (n = 120), was genotyped at 17 microsatellite loci, and a combination of clustering, genetic population assignment and various migration estimation methods were applied to these data. Key results. Moderate population structure was observed (FST = 0.03–0.21), with five geographic populations defined by genetic clustering. Almost all individuals were correctly assigned to the location of origin, and recent migration rates among forest patches were found to be low. Conclusions. It is possible to define the origin of stoats at this regional scale using genetic measures. From this, we show that the stoat incursion on Rangitoto Island that occurred post-eradication in 2010 probably came from East Auckland (P <0.0001), whereas the 2014 stoat incursion on Motutapu Island probably originated from a population linked to the Waitakeres. Also, the Waiheke Island stoat population has minimal connection to all other populations and it is therefore a potential eradication unit. Implications. The low migration rates among forest patches indicated that if thorough control is imposed on a discrete forest patch, reinvasion from other forest patches will be relatively low. Importantly, for stoat control in the region, the isolation of the Waiheke Island stoat population means that eradication here is likely to be feasible with low reinvasion pressure.",
    keywords = "assignment, eradication, genetic, invasion, microsatellite, migration, Mustela erminea.",
    author = "A. Veale and Dianne GLEESON and Mick Clout",
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    language = "English",
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    journal = "Australian Wildlife Research",
    issn = "1035-3712",
    publisher = "CSIRO",

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    Measuring connectivity of invasive stoat populations to inform conservation management. / Veale, A.; GLEESON, Dianne; Clout, Mick.

    In: Wildlife Research, Vol. 41, 2014, p. 395-406.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    TY - JOUR

    T1 - Measuring connectivity of invasive stoat populations to inform conservation management

    AU - Veale, A.

    AU - GLEESON, Dianne

    AU - Clout, Mick

    PY - 2014

    Y1 - 2014

    N2 - Context. Effective design of conservation management programs for long-term population control requires an accurate definition of the spatial extent of populations, along with a proper understanding of the ways that landscape patchiness influences demography and dispersal within these populations. Aims. In the present study, genetic techniques are used to describe the population genetic structure and connectivity of invasive stoats (Mustela erminea) across the Auckland region, New Zealand, so as to assist planning for mainland stoat control, and define potential future eradication units. Methods. Asample of stoats from across the region (n = 120), was genotyped at 17 microsatellite loci, and a combination of clustering, genetic population assignment and various migration estimation methods were applied to these data. Key results. Moderate population structure was observed (FST = 0.03–0.21), with five geographic populations defined by genetic clustering. Almost all individuals were correctly assigned to the location of origin, and recent migration rates among forest patches were found to be low. Conclusions. It is possible to define the origin of stoats at this regional scale using genetic measures. From this, we show that the stoat incursion on Rangitoto Island that occurred post-eradication in 2010 probably came from East Auckland (P <0.0001), whereas the 2014 stoat incursion on Motutapu Island probably originated from a population linked to the Waitakeres. Also, the Waiheke Island stoat population has minimal connection to all other populations and it is therefore a potential eradication unit. Implications. The low migration rates among forest patches indicated that if thorough control is imposed on a discrete forest patch, reinvasion from other forest patches will be relatively low. Importantly, for stoat control in the region, the isolation of the Waiheke Island stoat population means that eradication here is likely to be feasible with low reinvasion pressure.

    AB - Context. Effective design of conservation management programs for long-term population control requires an accurate definition of the spatial extent of populations, along with a proper understanding of the ways that landscape patchiness influences demography and dispersal within these populations. Aims. In the present study, genetic techniques are used to describe the population genetic structure and connectivity of invasive stoats (Mustela erminea) across the Auckland region, New Zealand, so as to assist planning for mainland stoat control, and define potential future eradication units. Methods. Asample of stoats from across the region (n = 120), was genotyped at 17 microsatellite loci, and a combination of clustering, genetic population assignment and various migration estimation methods were applied to these data. Key results. Moderate population structure was observed (FST = 0.03–0.21), with five geographic populations defined by genetic clustering. Almost all individuals were correctly assigned to the location of origin, and recent migration rates among forest patches were found to be low. Conclusions. It is possible to define the origin of stoats at this regional scale using genetic measures. From this, we show that the stoat incursion on Rangitoto Island that occurred post-eradication in 2010 probably came from East Auckland (P <0.0001), whereas the 2014 stoat incursion on Motutapu Island probably originated from a population linked to the Waitakeres. Also, the Waiheke Island stoat population has minimal connection to all other populations and it is therefore a potential eradication unit. Implications. The low migration rates among forest patches indicated that if thorough control is imposed on a discrete forest patch, reinvasion from other forest patches will be relatively low. Importantly, for stoat control in the region, the isolation of the Waiheke Island stoat population means that eradication here is likely to be feasible with low reinvasion pressure.

    KW - assignment

    KW - eradication

    KW - genetic

    KW - invasion

    KW - microsatellite

    KW - migration

    KW - Mustela erminea.

    U2 - 10.1071/WR14015

    DO - 10.1071/WR14015

    M3 - Article

    VL - 41

    SP - 395

    EP - 406

    JO - Australian Wildlife Research

    JF - Australian Wildlife Research

    SN - 1035-3712

    ER -