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dc.contributor.advisorSchizas, Nikolaos V.
dc.contributor.authorHammerman, Nicholas M.
dc.description.abstractIdentifying genetic population connectivity and discrete population boundaries are important objectives for management of declining Caribbean reef-building corals and coral reefs. A double digest restriction associated DNA (ddRAD) sequencing protocol was utilized to generate 2,514 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) to estimate patterns of horizontal and vertical gene flow in the brooding Caribbean plate coral, Agaricia lamarcki (Milne Edwards 1951), a dominant species in mesophotic coral communities. Individual colonies (n=200) were sampled from twelve locations throughout Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands from shallow (~10-20m) and mesophotic habitats (~30-70m). STRUCTURE analyses, principal coordinate analyses and F- statistics revealed population structure between eight sampling localities in southwest Puerto Rico as compared with three populations from western Puerto Rico, southern Puerto Rico and St. Croix, respectively. Connectivity was estimated among the eight vertical and horizontally separated reefs within southwestern Puerto Rico. Our data suggest that A. lamarcki is capable of genetic dispersal on small spatial scales both horizontally and vertically, in patterns concordant with those predicted from a stepping stone model. As geographic distance increases among populations, so does genetic differentiation, consistent with the model of isolation by distance. Vertical dispersion implies that mesophotic populations could supply larvae to recolonize depleted shallow water populations of this species, as could other species with wide depth distributions.
dc.description.abstractLa identificación de la conectividad genética y de los límites de distribución de las poblaciones son objetivos importantes para el manejo de los corales formadores de arrecifes del Caribe. En este trabajo se utilizó la digestión de ADN con enzimas de restricción (ddRAD) para la secuenciación e identificacion de los patrones de flujo genético horizontal y vertical del coral Agaricia lamarcki (Milne Edwards 1951l), una especie con amplia distribución en el gradiente de profundidad (10-70m). Fragmentos de 200 colonias fueron colectadas en doce localidades de Puerto Rico y de las Islas Vírgenes entre 10 y 25m (someros) y entre 35 y 70m (mesofóticas). Los resultados de análisis en “STRUCTURE” indican una estructura poblacional entre ocho localidades de muestreo en el suroeste de Puerto Rico, en comparación con tres poblaciones separadas, una en Mona, otra en Caja de Muerto y otra en las Islas Vigenes. Los resultados sugieren dispersión genética horizontal y verticalmente pero en escalas espaciales cortas, concordantes con los patrones de un modelo de “Stepping Stone”. A medida que aumenta la distancia geográfica entre las poblaciones, también lo hace la diferenciación genética, de acuerdo con el modelo de “Aislamiento por Distancia”. La dispersión vertical implica que las poblaciones mesofóticas podrían suministrar larvas para recolonizar las poblaciones afectadas en habitats someros o viceversa.
dc.description.sponsorshipGenome and Sequencing Analysis Facility at the University of Texas at Austin (GSAF UT) Puerto Rico SeaGrant College Program (FRS-535265) awarded to Dr. Nikolaos V. Schizas NOAA grants to the Caribbean Coral Reef Institute (CCRI) of the University of Puerto Rico at Mayagüez: NA06NOS4780190, NA10NOS4260223, NA11NOS4260157, and NA11NOS4260184 Research assistantships from the Department of Marine Sciences and the Puerto Rico Sea Grant College Program (PD-313)en_US
dc.subjectCoral reef restoration-Puerto Ricoen_US
dc.subjectMesophotic coral reef-populations-Puerto Ricoen_US
dc.subjectCoral reef management-Puerto Ricoen_US
dc.subjectPlating coral Agaricia Lamarckien_US
dc.subject.lcshAgariciidae -- Puerto Ricoen_US
dc.subject.lcshAgariciidae -- St. Croixen_US
dc.subject.lcshAgariciidae -- Geneticsen_US
dc.subject.lcshCoral reef management -- Caribbean Seaen_US
dc.subject.lcshCoral reef ecology -- Caribbean Seaen_US
dc.subject.lcshDeep sea ecology -- Caribbean Seaen_US
dc.titleDiscrete population structure and genetic connectivity of the plating coral, Agaricia Lamarcki from Puerto Rico and St. Croixen_US
dc.rights.licenseAll rights reserveden_US
dc.rights.holder(c) 2016 Nicholas M. Hammermanen_US
dc.contributor.committeeWeil, Ernesto
dc.contributor.committeeAlfaro, Monica
dc.contributor.committeeOtero, Ernesto
dc.contributor.representativeNavarro, Ana Sciencesen_US
dc.contributor.collegeCollege of Arts and Sciences - Sciencesen_US
dc.contributor.departmentDepartment of Marine Sciencesen_US

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    Items included under this collection are theses, dissertations, and project reports submitted as a requirement for completing a graduate degree at UPR-Mayagüez.

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