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Abstract Detail

Conservation Biology

Namoff, Sandra [1], Griffith, M. Patrick [2], Lewis, Carl [3], Francisco-Ortega, Javier [4], Noblick, Larry R. [2].

Ex situ conservation collection efficacy: a study of Thrinax morrisii.

Living plant collections are important research resources, and key components of conservation. Strategies for conservation vary between and within living collections. As understanding of the importance of genetic diversity has increased, living collections often seek to maximize genetic diversity by preserving multiple individuals. This is based on opinion regarding inbreeding depression, loss of diversity through genetic drift in small collections, and conservation management recommendations. It can be difficult to estimate the actual conservation value of an ex situ collection. Critical evaluation of actual living collections with population genetic analysis can further inform and guide ex situ conservation strategy. Here, we empirically quantify the genetic variation within a natural population captured through a population-based collection protocol. Thrinax morrisii was used as a model taxon for this study. A variety of population genetic questions have been explored in Arecaceae, providing a robust context. An extensive living collection derived from a single population of T. morrisii was examined. 61 specimens from the ex situ collection and 100 individuals from throughout the parent population were compared via 11 ISSR loci. Comparing the genetic structure between the population and the collection illuminates the degree of diversity captured via the current population-based collecting protocol. Developing an effective sampling structure to capture significant variation for conservation collections will help plan and maintain viable ex situ populations. This work can inform conservation efforts in the palm family, and for other long-lived perennials with a high degree of adaptive specialization.

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1 - Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden, Center for Tropical Plant Conservation, 11935 Old Cutler Road, Coral Gables, Miami, Florida, 33156-4242, USA
2 - Montgomery Botanical Center, 11901 Old Cutler Road, Miami, Florida, 33156, USA
3 - Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden, 11935 Old Cutler Rd., Coral Gables, Miami, Florida, 33156-4299
4 - Florida International University, Deparment of Biological Sciences, 11200 SW 8th St., Miami, Florida, 33199, USA

botanic garden
living collection

Presentation Type: Oral Paper:Papers for Topics
Session: 27
Location: 211/SUB
Date: Monday, July 28th, 2008
Time: 4:15 PM
Number: 27003
Abstract ID:602

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