Stevens, M.I. & Hogg, I.D. (2010). Long-term isolation and recent range expansion from glacial refugia revealed for the endemic springtail Gomphiocephalus hodgsoni from Victoria Land, Antarctica. Molecular Ecology, 12(9). 2357-2369.
Permanent Research Commons link: http://hdl.handle.net/10289/4118
We examined the phylogeography of the endemic Antarctic collembolan Gomphiocephalus hodgsoni using allozymes and mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA; COI) to determine if potentially limited dispersal and long-term habitat fragmentation have promoted regional genetic differentiation. Allozyme analyses showed that differentiation among 21 populations within the Ross Dependency was high (FST = 0.55) with two main groups each representing a distinct geographical region: (1) Ross Island and Beaufort Island; and (2) all continental sites. Ross Island populations showed low levels of differentiation (FST = 0.05) and no correlation with geographical distance, suggesting their derivation from a single glacial refuge. By contrast, continental regions revealed moderate levels of differentiation (FST = 0.27) and a strong correlation with geographical distance, indicating a much older history with several refugia likely. Two sympatric allozyme genotypes were found at three continental sites from Taylor Valley and were congruent with two mtDNA haplotypes, implying nonrandom breeding groups. Although haplotype sharing between one Ross Island site (Cape Bird) and one continental site (Granite Harbour) was identified, the clades showed mostly fragmented allopatric distributions. The extensive Pleistocene glaciations, in conjunction with limited dispersal opportunities, appear to have promoted isolation and divergence among the fragmented habitats. Furthermore, the McMurdo Sound appears to be an effective isolating barrier to dispersal. However, we suggest that the unaided dispersal capacity of G. hodgsoni is unlikely to account for the limited mixing of haplotypes across the McMurdo Sound and recent human- or bird-mediated dispersal is highly probable.
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