Low genetic variability, female-biased dispersal and high movement rates in an urban population of Eurasian badgers Meles meles

2.50
Hdl Handle:
http://hdl.handle.net/10545/270370
Title:
Low genetic variability, female-biased dispersal and high movement rates in an urban population of Eurasian badgers Meles meles
Authors:
Huck, Maren ( 0000-0002-7740-3903 ) ; Frantz, Alain C.; Dawson, Deborah A.; Burke, Terry; Roper, Timothy J.
Abstract:
1. Urban and rural populations of animals can differ in their behaviour, both in order to meet their ecological requirements and due to the constraints imposed by different environments. The study of urban populations can therefore offer useful insights into the behavioural flexibility of a species as a whole, as well as indicating how the species in question adapts to a specifically urban environment. 2. The genetic structure of a population can provide information about social structure and movement patterns that is difficult to obtain by other means. Using non-invasively collected hair samples, we estimated the population size of Eurasian badgers Meles meles in the city of Brighton, England, and calculated population-specific parameters of genetic variability and sex-specific rates of outbreeding and dispersal. 3. Population density was high in the context of badger densities reported throughout their range. This was due to a high density of social groups rather than large numbers of individuals per group. 4. The allelic richness of the population was low compared with other British populations. However, the rate of extra-group paternity and the relatively frequent (mainly temporary) intergroup movements suggest that, on a local scale, the population was outbred. Although members of both sexes visited other groups, there was a trend for more females to make intergroup movements. 5. The results reveal that urban badgers can achieve high densities and suggest that while some population parameters are similar between urban and rural populations, the frequency of intergroup movements is higher among urban badgers. In a wider context, these results demonstrate the ability of non-invasive genetic sampling to provide information about the population density, social structure and behaviour of urban wildlife.
Affiliation:
University of Sussex; University of Sheffield
Citation:
Low genetic variability, female-biased dispersal and high movement rates in an urban population of Eurasian badgers Meles meles 2008, 77 (5):905 Journal of Animal Ecology
Publisher:
Wiley
Journal:
Journal of Animal Ecology
Issue Date:
2008
URI:
http://hdl.handle.net/10545/270370
DOI:
10.1111/j.1365-2656.2008.01415.x
Additional Links:
http://doi.wiley.com/10.1111/j.1365-2656.2008.01415.x
Type:
Article
ISSN:
00218790; 13652656
Sponsors:
Marie-Curie Intra-European Fellowship (BSSUB - 24007); Defra WSC contract WM0304
Appears in Collections:
Biological Sciences Research Group

Full metadata record

DC FieldValue Language
dc.contributor.authorHuck, Marenen_GB
dc.contributor.authorFrantz, Alain C.en_GB
dc.contributor.authorDawson, Deborah A.en_GB
dc.contributor.authorBurke, Terryen_GB
dc.contributor.authorRoper, Timothy J.en_GB
dc.date.accessioned2013-02-25T16:57:29Z-
dc.date.available2013-02-25T16:57:29Z-
dc.date.issued2008-
dc.identifier.citationLow genetic variability, female-biased dispersal and high movement rates in an urban population of Eurasian badgers Meles meles 2008, 77 (5):905 Journal of Animal Ecologyen_GB
dc.identifier.issn00218790-
dc.identifier.issn13652656-
dc.identifier.doi10.1111/j.1365-2656.2008.01415.x-
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10545/270370-
dc.description.abstract1. Urban and rural populations of animals can differ in their behaviour, both in order to meet their ecological requirements and due to the constraints imposed by different environments. The study of urban populations can therefore offer useful insights into the behavioural flexibility of a species as a whole, as well as indicating how the species in question adapts to a specifically urban environment. 2. The genetic structure of a population can provide information about social structure and movement patterns that is difficult to obtain by other means. Using non-invasively collected hair samples, we estimated the population size of Eurasian badgers Meles meles in the city of Brighton, England, and calculated population-specific parameters of genetic variability and sex-specific rates of outbreeding and dispersal. 3. Population density was high in the context of badger densities reported throughout their range. This was due to a high density of social groups rather than large numbers of individuals per group. 4. The allelic richness of the population was low compared with other British populations. However, the rate of extra-group paternity and the relatively frequent (mainly temporary) intergroup movements suggest that, on a local scale, the population was outbred. Although members of both sexes visited other groups, there was a trend for more females to make intergroup movements. 5. The results reveal that urban badgers can achieve high densities and suggest that while some population parameters are similar between urban and rural populations, the frequency of intergroup movements is higher among urban badgers. In a wider context, these results demonstrate the ability of non-invasive genetic sampling to provide information about the population density, social structure and behaviour of urban wildlife.en_GB
dc.description.sponsorshipMarie-Curie Intra-European Fellowship (BSSUB - 24007); Defra WSC contract WM0304en_GB
dc.publisherWileyen_GB
dc.relation.urlhttp://doi.wiley.com/10.1111/j.1365-2656.2008.01415.xen_GB
dc.rightsArchived with thanks to Journal of Animal Ecologyen_GB
dc.subjectGroup sizeen_GB
dc.subjectSpatial genetic structureen_GB
dc.subjectOutbreedingen_GB
dc.subjectPopulation densityen_GB
dc.subjectSex-biased dispersalen_GB
dc.subjectSex typingen_GB
dc.titleLow genetic variability, female-biased dispersal and high movement rates in an urban population of Eurasian badgers Meles meles-
dc.typeArticleen
dc.contributor.departmentUniversity of Sussexen_GB
dc.contributor.departmentUniversity of Sheffielden_GB
dc.identifier.journalJournal of Animal Ecologyen_GB
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