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Seascape habitat patchiness and hydrodynamics explain genetic structuring of kelp populations


Durrant, HMS and Barrett, NS and Edgar, GJ and Coleman, MA and Burridge, CP, Seascape habitat patchiness and hydrodynamics explain genetic structuring of kelp populations, Marine Ecology Progress Series, 587 pp. 81-92. ISSN 0171-8630 (2018) [Refereed Article]

Available from 26 January 2023

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2018 Inter-Research

DOI: doi:10.3354/meps12447


Macroalgae underpin most temperate inshore ecosystems, but increasing macroalgal loss, fragmentation and range contractions are eroding connectivity among populations. Understanding loss, and predicting the likelihood of recovery, is dependent on knowledge of population connectivity and how it is mediated by variability in local seascapes. Although many studies of marine macroalgal connectivity have focussed on influences of geographic distance on genetic structure, the contribution of intervening habitat is rarely considered. We tested the extent to which geographic separation, intervening suitable habitat (reef versus sand and open water) and local hydrodynamics (inferred from particle dispersal models) explained structuring of genetic variation at microsatellite loci in the habitat forming macroalga Lessonia corrugata. Genetic structuring was best explained by the availability of suitable intervening habitat (rocky reef) rather than by geographic separation, although biologically realistic estimates of dispersal probability also became important at smaller spatial scales. Our results indicate that ecological separation can be more influential than geographic distance on population genetic structuring, and this should be considered during the assessment of connectivity and gene flow in marine species.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:seascape genetics, Lessonia corrugata, dispersal, macroalgae, microsatellites
Research Division:Biological Sciences
Research Group:Genetics
Research Field:Genetics not elsewhere classified
Objective Division:Expanding Knowledge
Objective Group:Expanding knowledge
Objective Field:Expanding knowledge in the environmental sciences
UTAS Author:Durrant, HMS (Miss Halley Durrant)
UTAS Author:Barrett, NS (Associate Professor Neville Barrett)
UTAS Author:Edgar, GJ (Professor Graham Edgar)
UTAS Author:Burridge, CP (Associate Professor Christopher Burridge)
ID Code:125508
Year Published:2018
Web of Science® Times Cited:18
Deposited By:Zoology
Deposited On:2018-04-20
Last Modified:2022-08-29

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