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Animal Conservation (2004) 7, 211220 C 2004 The Zoological Society of London. Printed in the United Kingdom DOI:10.1017/S1367943004001295 Genetic variability and population structure among wild
 

Summary: Animal Conservation (2004) 7, 211220 C 2004 The Zoological Society of London. Printed in the United Kingdom DOI:10.1017/S1367943004001295
Genetic variability and population structure among wild
Baird's tapirs
James E. Norton1
and Mary V. Ashley
University of Illinois at Chicago, Department of Biological Sciences, (M/C 066), 845 West Taylor St., Chicago, IL 60607-7060, USA
1 Current Address: Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine, Northwestern University Medical School, Tarry 14-707, 303 E. Chicago Ave.,
Chicago, IL 60611, USA
(Received 27 March 2003; accepted 1 November 2003)
Abstract
Baird's tapir, Tapirus bairdii, is an endangered, large, Central American mammal whose shy behaviour, solitary
social structure and preference for deep tropical forests make it difficult to study using traditional field biology
techniques. Despite great concern regarding its conservation status, very little is known about its population
structure, mating system or dispersal patterns, information needed for designing appropriate management
plans. Molecular genetic approaches can be of use in obtaining such information. In this study, we developed
six polymorphic microsatellite genetic markers from genomic libraries of T. bairdii and T. terrestris. Using these
markers, we completed the first assessment of genetic variability and population genetic structure in Baird's
tapirs. Populations from southern Costa Rica and southern Panama were found to have low levels of genetic
variability (allelic content, heterozygosity) but no indication of a recent population bottleneck. Bayesian and
standard (F-statistic) analyses of genotype data indicate that the southern Costa Rican and southern Panamanian

  

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

 

Collections: Biology and Medicine; Environmental Sciences and Ecology