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Gene-flow in the clouds : landscape genetics of a viviparous, montane grassland toad in the tropics

Title data

Sandberger-Loua, Laura ; Rödel, Mark-Oliver ; Feldhaar, Heike:
Gene-flow in the clouds : landscape genetics of a viviparous, montane grassland toad in the tropics.
In: Conservation Genetics. Vol. 19 (2018) Issue 1 . - pp. 169-180.
ISSN 1572-9737
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10592-017-1029-4

Abstract in another language

Anthropogenic habitat alteration often increases fragmentation and isolation, which decreases population sizes and increases extinction risk for species. Extrinsic threats may be buffered or enhanced by intrinsic factors. Within amphibians, the influence of different environmental and intrinsic factors on the population structure is not yet fully understood. Four factors were found to be important for population connectivity: life history traits, recent (anthropogenic) land use history, habitat, and topography, but the direction of their influence differed between studies. Here, we examine the genetic population structure and interpopulation connectivity within the complete distribution of Nimba toads (Nimbaphrynoides occidentalis), a toad from montane tropical West Africa. The Nimba toad is the only known viviparous, matrotrophic (foetuses are nourished during the gestation by their mothers) anuran on Earth. It occurs in three regions, the smallest is situated in disturbed, the largest population in partly disturbed habitat and the third was not yet impacted. We found small, but significant population differentiation, no indication of a recent bottleneck in the smallest population, but an indication of a reduction in population sizes in the more distant past in all three populations and no sex-biased dispersal. Correlations with landscape classifications indicate that high elevations, due to their high humidity levels, are the most important landscape characteristic facilitating dispersal. This underscores desiccation risk as an important landscape characteristic for amphibian population connectivity. We found indication that life-history traits (viviparity), land use history (mining-related activity) and topography (elevation) have an influence on Nimba toad population differentiation and gene-flow.

Further data

Item Type: Article in a journal
Refereed: Yes
Additional notes: BAYCEER144567
Institutions of the University: Faculties > Faculty of Biology, Chemistry and Earth Sciences > Department of Biology > Chair Animal Ecology I
Faculties > Faculty of Biology, Chemistry and Earth Sciences > Department of Biology > Professorship Animal Population Ecology
Faculties > Faculty of Biology, Chemistry and Earth Sciences > Department of Biology > Professorship Animal Population Ecology > Professorship Animal Population Ecology - Univ.-Prof. Dr. Heike Feldhaar
Research Institutions
Research Institutions > Research Centres
Research Institutions > Research Centres > Bayreuth Center of Ecology and Environmental Research- BayCEER
Result of work at the UBT: Yes
DDC Subjects: 500 Science
Date Deposited: 05 Apr 2019 07:31
Last Modified: 05 Apr 2019 07:31
URI: https://eref.uni-bayreuth.de/id/eprint/48247