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Journal of Heredity 1998;89:6270; 0022-1503/98/$5.00 High Levels of Gene Flow in Bur Oak
 

Summary: 62
Journal of Heredity 1998;89:6270; 0022-1503/98/$5.00
High Levels of Gene Flow in Bur Oak
Revealed by Paternity Analysis Using
Microsatellites
B. D. Dow and M. V. Ashley
Microsatellite analysis was used to characterize pollen dispersal in a stand of 62
adult bur oaks (Quercus macrocarpa) in northern Illinois. Using PCR amplification
of four dinucleotide microsatellite loci, pollen donors of 282 acorns collected from
three adult trees located in different parts of the stand were determined by exclu-
sion. Overall at least 57% of the acorns were pollinated by trees outside of the
stand, because all adult trees in the stand were excluded from paternity. Average
pollination distance for within-stand pollinations was 75 m, and pollen donors for
two of the three maternal trees were randomly dispersed throughout the stand.
These two trees also received more pollen from 50 m away than from near neigh-
bors. Self-pollination was rare or nonexistent. This study provides direct evidence
for high levels of long-distance pollination in a wind-pollinated species, and con-
tradicts traditional models of wind pollination which suggest that clouds of pollen
dissipate from the source to ineffectively low densities over short distances. In-
stead, the mating system of bur oak seems to be extraordinarily efficient at pro-

  

Source: Ashley, Mary V. - Department of Biological Sciences, University of Illinois at Chicago

 

Collections: Biology and Medicine; Environmental Sciences and Ecology