Genetic diversity and structure of the endangered Betula pendula subsp. fontqueri populations in the south of Spain
Martín C., Parra T., Clemente-Muñoz M., Hernández-Bermejo E. (2008). Genetic diversity and structure of the endangered Betula pendula subsp. fontqueri populations in the south of Spain. Silva Fennica vol. 42 no. 4 article id 229. https://doi.org/10.14214/sf.229
Betula pendula subsp. fontqueri, present in the south of Spain, has been considered in danger of extinction and, for this reason, some regional governments in Spain have included their populations in conservation programmes. In order to establish the genetic structure of the Betula pendula subsp. fontqueri populations, a random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) analysis was carried out. Two B. pubescens populations were included in the study as taxonomic controls. B. pendula subsp. fontqueri populations were clearly differentiated through UPGMA, and showed significant pairwise genetic distance (ΦST) values between all pairs of populations obtained by AMOVA. Genetic diversity found between populations was not correlated to geographical distances. The significant differences among populations must be due to progressive isolation of Betula populations along their paleogeographical history, and more recently to the drastic fragmentation and reduction of some of these populations. The results obtained in this work show clear genetic differences which could be considered in the management of conservation strategies for Betula pendula subsp. fontqueri in its Iberian meridional distribution.
Received 21 February 2008 Accepted 14 April 2008 Published 31 December 2008