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Isozyme Variation in Natural Populations of Drosophila buzzatii

J. S. F. Barker and J. C. Mulley
Evolution
Vol. 30, No. 2 (Jun., 1976), pp. 213-233
DOI: 10.2307/2407697
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2407697
Page Count: 21
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Isozyme Variation in Natural Populations of Drosophila buzzatii
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Abstract

Drosophila buzzatii is a cactophilic species of the mulleri subgroup. Genetic variation was measured for 29 loci in 50 populations from 35 localities throughout the structured and potentially known distribution in eastern Australia. The average population was polymorphic for 15.3% (5% criterion) and 19.2% (1% criterion) of the loci sampled. The average individual was heterozygous at only 6.5% of the loci sampled. This low level of heterozygosity is considered in terms of founder effect, niche width and environmental grain, and it is suggested that the cactophilic species of the mulleri subgroup may show less genic variation than other Drosophila species. The low level of genetic variation appears not to be due to a founder effect associated with the species' introduction into Australia. For the five variable loci where tests were possible, heterozygote frequencies were generally less than expected, possibly due to the combined or individual effects of Wahlund's principle, extra inbreeding above that due to finite population size because of the mating of close relatives and diversifying selection. At least two of the localities sampled appear to be genetically isolated and it is argued that some form of balancing selection is operating to maintain variation.

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