Breeding populations of northern pintails have similar mitochondrial DNA

Canadian Journal of Zoology
By: , and 



Northern pintails (Anas acuta) are highly nomadic, which may result in high levels of gene flow among nesting areas. To assess the extent of genetic differentiation among nesting areas, we analyzed mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) variation in northern pintail females from three regions: Alaska, California, and midcontinent prairies and parklands. Abundant mtDNA variation was evident (20 genotypes among 289 birds), but there was no significant genetic differentiation of nesting areas within or among regions. Results indicate that pintails have had historically large breeding population sizes and a high rate of gene flow among North American nesting areas. Specific nesting areas are not independent units, but part of a larger continental population. High rates of gene flow suggest that over time, localized reductions in recruitment or survival may be compensated for by immigration.
Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Breeding populations of northern pintails have similar mitochondrial DNA
Series title Canadian Journal of Zoology
DOI 10.1139/z96-112
Volume 74
Issue 6
Year Published 1996
Language English
Publisher Canadian Science Publishing
Contributing office(s) Alaska Biological Science Center
Description 8 p.
First page 992
Last page 999
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