Phylogeography of the Endangered Otago Skink, Oligosoma otagense: Population Structure, Hybridisation and Genetic Diversity in Captive Populations

David Chapple, Alisha Birkett, Kimberly Miller, Charles Daugherty, Dianne Gleeson

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    17 Citations (Scopus)
    1 Downloads (Pure)

    Abstract

    Climatic cooling and substantial tectonic activity since the late Miocene have had a pronounced influence on the evolutionary history of the fauna of New Zealand's South Island. However, many species have recently experienced dramatic range reductions due to habitat fragmentation and the introduction of mammalian predators and competitors. These anthropogenic impacts have been particularly severe in the tussock grasslands of the Otago region. The Otago skink (Oligosoma otagense), endemic to the region, is one of the most critically endangered vertebrates in New Zealand. We use mitochondrial DNA sequence data to investigate the evolutionary history of the Otago skink, examine its population genetic structure, and assess the level of genetic diversity in the individuals in the captive breeding program. Our data indicate that the Otago skink diverged from its closest relatives in the Miocene, consistent with the commencement of tectonic uplift of the Southern Alps. However, there is evidence for past introgression with the scree skink (O. waimatense) in the northern Otago-southern Canterbury region. The remnant populations in eastern Otago and western Otago are estimated to have diverged in the mid-Pliocene, with no haplotypes shared between these two regions. This divergence accounts for 95% of the genetic diversity in the species. Within both regions there is strong genetic structure among populations, although shared haplotypes are generally evident between adjacent localities. Although substantial genetic diversity is present in the captive population, all individuals originate from the eastern region and the majority had haplotypes that were not evident in the intensively managed populations at Macraes Flat. Our data indicate that eastern and western populations should continue to be regarded as separate management units. Knowledge of the genetic diversity of the breeding stock will act to inform the captive management of the Otago skink and contribute to a key recovery action for the species.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1-11
    Number of pages11
    JournalPLoS One
    Volume7
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2012

    Fingerprint

    Phylogeography
    Scincidae
    Tectonics
    phylogeography
    population structure
    hybridization
    genetic variation
    DNA sequences
    Haplotypes
    Mitochondrial DNA
    haplotypes
    Population
    Genetic Structures
    tectonics
    New Zealand
    Breeding
    Cooling
    Recovery
    History
    breeding stock

    Cite this

    @article{542697f109e04781ab252f84ff88ea95,
    title = "Phylogeography of the Endangered Otago Skink, Oligosoma otagense: Population Structure, Hybridisation and Genetic Diversity in Captive Populations",
    abstract = "Climatic cooling and substantial tectonic activity since the late Miocene have had a pronounced influence on the evolutionary history of the fauna of New Zealand's South Island. However, many species have recently experienced dramatic range reductions due to habitat fragmentation and the introduction of mammalian predators and competitors. These anthropogenic impacts have been particularly severe in the tussock grasslands of the Otago region. The Otago skink (Oligosoma otagense), endemic to the region, is one of the most critically endangered vertebrates in New Zealand. We use mitochondrial DNA sequence data to investigate the evolutionary history of the Otago skink, examine its population genetic structure, and assess the level of genetic diversity in the individuals in the captive breeding program. Our data indicate that the Otago skink diverged from its closest relatives in the Miocene, consistent with the commencement of tectonic uplift of the Southern Alps. However, there is evidence for past introgression with the scree skink (O. waimatense) in the northern Otago-southern Canterbury region. The remnant populations in eastern Otago and western Otago are estimated to have diverged in the mid-Pliocene, with no haplotypes shared between these two regions. This divergence accounts for 95{\%} of the genetic diversity in the species. Within both regions there is strong genetic structure among populations, although shared haplotypes are generally evident between adjacent localities. Although substantial genetic diversity is present in the captive population, all individuals originate from the eastern region and the majority had haplotypes that were not evident in the intensively managed populations at Macraes Flat. Our data indicate that eastern and western populations should continue to be regarded as separate management units. Knowledge of the genetic diversity of the breeding stock will act to inform the captive management of the Otago skink and contribute to a key recovery action for the species.",
    author = "David Chapple and Alisha Birkett and Kimberly Miller and Charles Daugherty and Dianne Gleeson",
    year = "2012",
    doi = "10.1371/journal.pone.0034599",
    language = "English",
    volume = "7",
    pages = "1--11",
    journal = "PLoS One",
    issn = "1932-6203",
    publisher = "Public Library of Science",

    }

    Phylogeography of the Endangered Otago Skink, Oligosoma otagense: Population Structure, Hybridisation and Genetic Diversity in Captive Populations. / Chapple, David; Birkett, Alisha; Miller, Kimberly; Daugherty, Charles; Gleeson, Dianne.

    In: PLoS One, Vol. 7, 2012, p. 1-11.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    TY - JOUR

    T1 - Phylogeography of the Endangered Otago Skink, Oligosoma otagense: Population Structure, Hybridisation and Genetic Diversity in Captive Populations

    AU - Chapple, David

    AU - Birkett, Alisha

    AU - Miller, Kimberly

    AU - Daugherty, Charles

    AU - Gleeson, Dianne

    PY - 2012

    Y1 - 2012

    N2 - Climatic cooling and substantial tectonic activity since the late Miocene have had a pronounced influence on the evolutionary history of the fauna of New Zealand's South Island. However, many species have recently experienced dramatic range reductions due to habitat fragmentation and the introduction of mammalian predators and competitors. These anthropogenic impacts have been particularly severe in the tussock grasslands of the Otago region. The Otago skink (Oligosoma otagense), endemic to the region, is one of the most critically endangered vertebrates in New Zealand. We use mitochondrial DNA sequence data to investigate the evolutionary history of the Otago skink, examine its population genetic structure, and assess the level of genetic diversity in the individuals in the captive breeding program. Our data indicate that the Otago skink diverged from its closest relatives in the Miocene, consistent with the commencement of tectonic uplift of the Southern Alps. However, there is evidence for past introgression with the scree skink (O. waimatense) in the northern Otago-southern Canterbury region. The remnant populations in eastern Otago and western Otago are estimated to have diverged in the mid-Pliocene, with no haplotypes shared between these two regions. This divergence accounts for 95% of the genetic diversity in the species. Within both regions there is strong genetic structure among populations, although shared haplotypes are generally evident between adjacent localities. Although substantial genetic diversity is present in the captive population, all individuals originate from the eastern region and the majority had haplotypes that were not evident in the intensively managed populations at Macraes Flat. Our data indicate that eastern and western populations should continue to be regarded as separate management units. Knowledge of the genetic diversity of the breeding stock will act to inform the captive management of the Otago skink and contribute to a key recovery action for the species.

    AB - Climatic cooling and substantial tectonic activity since the late Miocene have had a pronounced influence on the evolutionary history of the fauna of New Zealand's South Island. However, many species have recently experienced dramatic range reductions due to habitat fragmentation and the introduction of mammalian predators and competitors. These anthropogenic impacts have been particularly severe in the tussock grasslands of the Otago region. The Otago skink (Oligosoma otagense), endemic to the region, is one of the most critically endangered vertebrates in New Zealand. We use mitochondrial DNA sequence data to investigate the evolutionary history of the Otago skink, examine its population genetic structure, and assess the level of genetic diversity in the individuals in the captive breeding program. Our data indicate that the Otago skink diverged from its closest relatives in the Miocene, consistent with the commencement of tectonic uplift of the Southern Alps. However, there is evidence for past introgression with the scree skink (O. waimatense) in the northern Otago-southern Canterbury region. The remnant populations in eastern Otago and western Otago are estimated to have diverged in the mid-Pliocene, with no haplotypes shared between these two regions. This divergence accounts for 95% of the genetic diversity in the species. Within both regions there is strong genetic structure among populations, although shared haplotypes are generally evident between adjacent localities. Although substantial genetic diversity is present in the captive population, all individuals originate from the eastern region and the majority had haplotypes that were not evident in the intensively managed populations at Macraes Flat. Our data indicate that eastern and western populations should continue to be regarded as separate management units. Knowledge of the genetic diversity of the breeding stock will act to inform the captive management of the Otago skink and contribute to a key recovery action for the species.

    U2 - 10.1371/journal.pone.0034599

    DO - 10.1371/journal.pone.0034599

    M3 - Article

    VL - 7

    SP - 1

    EP - 11

    JO - PLoS One

    JF - PLoS One

    SN - 1932-6203

    ER -