Vitt, Pati , Knight, Tiffany .
Optimal management frequency for population viability and genetic diversity.
Many plant species need disturbance to establish and/or maintain viable populations, and several studies have used demographic models and data to calculate how frequent the disturbances must be to allow for viable populations. In addition, many plant species will outcross at a higher frequency in years following a disturbance event, if, for example, plants produce more chasmogamous flowers in these years. Here, we ask whether the optimal disturbance frequency for maintaining population size differs from that which maximizes population genetic diversity. Viola conspersa is an Illinois state-listed short-lived perennial that performs best in the years following disturbances, such as tree-falls,animal activity such as digging, local flooding, or human disturbance such as logging or plowing. In the Midwest, invasion by buckthorn forms a densely closed canopy that might reduce reproduction, survivorship and patterns of reproduction,potentially causing local extinction. We studied the size-specific demography of 6 populations for 10 years, and sampled a wide variety of environmental variation experienced by this species,including highly invaded habitats and those with active habitat restoration. We created an individual-based model that considers how different frequencies of disturbance (via habitat restoration) correspond to population viability and patterns of within-population genetic diversity. We parameterized this model with our demographic field data and a hypothetical quantitative trait composed of 10 loci each with two alleles. We find that plants produce slightly more chasmagamous flowers following a disturbance, and that disturbance frequencies required to maintain populationsize and to maximize genetic diversity of populations are similar.
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1 - Chicago Botanic Garden, 1000 Lake Cook Road, Glencoe, IL, 60022, USA
Presentation Type: Oral Paper:Papers for Sections
Location: Portland Room/Chase Park Plaza
Date: Monday, July 11th, 2011
Time: 8:30 AM