Date of Award

1-1-2011

Document Type

Campus Access Thesis

Department

Biological Sciences

First Advisor

Joseph M Quattro

Abstract

Anthropogenic introductions of invasives can lead to the extirpation or extinction of native species through a myriad of different biological mechanisms. Introgressive hybridization is one mechanism that is often overlooked due to difficulty of examination without the use of molecular techniques. However, hybridization can be just as detrimental to endemics as predation and competition, especially in species that have limited reproductive barriers, i.e. icthyofuana. Here hybridization is examined between two introduced species (Alabama spotted bass, Micropterus punctulatus henshalli, and smallmouth bass, M. dolomieu) and two endemic species of black bass (redeye bass, M. coosae, and largemouth bass, M. salmoides) in four reservoirs within the Savannah River drainage system. Three bi-allelic nuclear DNA loci and one mitochondrial DNA locus were used to examine the degree of hybridization and introgression over both temporal and spatial scales. These results are important for the management and conservation of rare fish species and adds to our knowledge of how introgressive hybridization proceeds over both of these scales.

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