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Population Genetics of the Sandbar Shark (Carcharhinus plumbeus) in the Gulf of Mexico and Mid-Atlantic Bight

Edward J. Heist, John E. Graves and John A. Musick
Copeia
Vol. 1995, No. 3 (Aug. 18, 1995), pp. 555-562
DOI: 10.2307/1446752
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/1446752
Page Count: 8
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Population Genetics of the Sandbar Shark (Carcharhinus plumbeus) in the Gulf of Mexico and Mid-Atlantic Bight
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Abstract

Allozyme electrophoresis and restriction fragment length polymorphism analysis of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) were performed on sandbar sharks (Carcharhinus plumbeus) from coastal waters of Virginia, including the Chesapeake Bay, and the Gulf of Mexico to test the hypothesis that individuals from the two locations comprise a single gene pool. Both techniques revealed a very low degree of genetic variability within the species (allozyme mean heterozygosity = 0.005, mean nucleotide sequence diversity = 0.036%). The small amount of genetic variation present appeared to be evenly distributed between sampling locations; and therefore, the null hypothesis of a single gene pool could not be rejected (contingency χ 2=1.344, P > 0.5, chi-square significance of mtDNA haplotype distribution = 0.81). This conclusion is consistent with the known life-history characteristics of the species, as well as the results of tagging studies.

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