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Quantitative Genetic Variation in Bicyclus Anynana Metapopulations

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image of Netherlands Journal of Zoology
For more content, see Archives Néerlandaises de Zoologie (Vol 1-17) and Animal Biology (Vol 53 and onwards).

Parent-offspring regression was used to estimate heritabilities (h2) of eight wing pattern characters plus five principal components of the butterfly Bicyclus anynana. The experiment consisted of six metapopulations with four subpopulations each with an effective subpopulation size Ne = 6 or 12, and additionally, one larger (Ne = 24) panmictic control population. Although the differences in treatments resulted in substantially different inbreeding coefficients at the ninth generation, there were no significantly differences in estimates of h2 among populations. The h2 estimates were moderately high (overall mean h2 = 0.43), even for the smallest most inbred metapopulation (mean h2males = 0.51, mean h2females = 0.35). We discuss why no significant reduction in h2 was detected in this analysis, while approximately similar sample sizes in molecular and fitness analyses were sufficient to detect severe inbreeding effects.

Affiliations: 1: Section of Evolutionary Biology, Irtstitute of Evolutionary Biology and Ecological Sciences, University of Leiden, PO Box 9516, 2300 RA Leiden, The Netherlands


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