Variation in the allele frequencies of five microsatellite loci was surveyed in 1256 individual spotted seatrout (Cynoscion nebulosus) obtained from 12 bays and estuaries from Laguna Madre, Texas, to Charlotte Harbor, Florida, to St. John's River on the Florida Atlantic Coast. Texas and Louisiana collection sites were resampled each year for two to four years (1998-2001). Genetic differentiation was observed. Spotted seatrout from Florida waters were strongly differentiated from spotted seatrout collected in Louisiana and Texas. The greatest genetic discontinuity was observed between Tampa Bay and Charlotte Harbor, and Charlotte Harbor seatrout were most similar to Atlantic Coast spotted seatrout. Texas and Louisiana samples were not strongly structured within the northwestern Gulf of Mexico and there was little evidence of temporal differentiation within bays. These findings are contrary to those of earlier analyses with allozymes and mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) where evidence of spatial differentiation was found for spotted seatrout resident on the Texas coast. The differences in genetic structure observed among these markers may reflect differences in response to selective pressure, or may be due to differences in underlying genetic processes.
Additional publication details
Genetic variability in spotted seatrout (Cynoscion nebulosus), determined with microsatellite DNA markers