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Further Genetic Studies of the South Amherst Population of Drosophila melanogaster

Philip T. Ives
Evolution
Vol. 24, No. 3 (Sep., 1970), pp. 507-518
DOI: 10.2307/2406830
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2406830
Page Count: 12
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Further Genetic Studies of the South Amherst Population of Drosophila melanogaster
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Abstract

Data are presented on the frequency of lethal and semilethal second chromosomes, and on rates of lethal allelism, in flies of the 1960-1969 collections from the South Amherst population of D. melanogaster. Collections were made at the Porch site studied earlier and, in 1966-1969, at a new site 5 km away, the Markert apple storage and its continuous rotten apple pile which appears to be one source of each year's South Amherst population. There is probably at most a small number of overwintering larvae in any one site, but a broad mixing of their descendants probably maintains many different lethal chromosomes in the area. High rates of allelism in June Markert collections did not lead to a lowering of the frequency of lethal and semilethal chromosomes in subsequent collections. But there was a close relationship between that frequency and the daily temperature range in eight collections during June-November 1967. These observations favor the view that the recessive lethals maintained in natural populations have heterotic properties which enable a population to exploit different environments more successfully.

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