American Journal of Botany 97(12): 18. 2010.
American Journal of Botany 97(12): 18, 2010; http://www.amjbot.org/ © 2010 Botanical Society of America
The genetic structure of plant populations is determined in
large part by the movement of pollen within and among popula-
tions, and pollination patterns will shape population connectiv-
ity and gene flow. Understanding patterns of pollen-mediated
gene flow across fragmented landscapes is important for pre-
dicting the impacts of landscape alterations on reproduction
(Robledo-Arnuncio et al., 2004; Garcia et al., 2005), regenera-
tion (Meiners et al., 2002; Finkeldey and Ziehe, 2004), and evo-
lutionary processes (Foré et al., 1992) of plant populations.
Patterns of pollen- and seed-mediated gene flow may be in-
ferred indirectly by measuring population genetic structure
(Berg and Hamrick, 1995; Bacles et al., 2004; Boys et al.,
2005). This approach is limited, however, in that it provides
only an estimate of historical levels of gene flow, and it gener-
ally does not partition gene flow into that effected by seeds and
by pollen unless maternal and paternal markers are available.
Given that many plant populations have been subject to very