Development of microsatellite loci exhibiting reverse ascertainment bias and a sexing marker for use in Emperor Geese (Chen canagica)

Avian Biology Research
By: , and 

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Abstract

The Alaskan population of Emperor Geese (Chen canagica) nests on the Yukon–Kuskokwim Delta in western Alaska. Numbers of Emperor Geese in Alaska declined from the 1960s to the mid-1980s and since then, their numbers have slowly increased. Low statistical power of microsatellite loci developed in other waterfowl species and used in previous studies of Emperor Geese are unable to confidently assign individual identity. Microsatellite loci for Emperor Goose were therefore developed using shotgun amplification and next-generation sequencing technology. Forty-one microsatellite loci were screened and 14 were found to be polymorphic in Emperor Geese. Only six markers – a combination of four novel loci and two loci developed in other waterfowl species – are needed to identify an individual from among the Alaskan Emperor Goose population. Genetic markers for identifying sex in Emperor Geese were also developed. The 14 novel variable loci and 15 monomorphic loci were screened for polymorphism in four other Arctic-nesting goose species, Black Brant (Branta bernicla nigricans), Greater White-fronted (Anser albifrons), Canada (B. canadensis) and Cackling (B. hutchinsii) Goose. Emperor Goose exhibited the smallest average number of alleles (3.3) and the lowest expected heterozygosity (0.467). Greater White-fronted Geese exhibited the highest average number of alleles (4.7) and Cackling Geese the highest expected heterozygosity (0.599). Six of the monomorphic loci were variable and able to be characterised in the other goose species assayed, a predicted outcome of reverse ascertainment bias. These findings fail to support the hypothesis of ascertainment bias due to selection of microsatellite markers.

Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Development of microsatellite loci exhibiting reverse ascertainment bias and a sexing marker for use in Emperor Geese (Chen canagica)
Series title Avian Biology Research
DOI 10.3184/175815617X14969254461396
Volume 10
Issue 4
Year Published 2017
Language English
Publisher Ingenta Connect
Contributing office(s) Alaska Science Center Biology WTEB
Description 10 p.
First page 201
Last page 210
Country United States
State Alaska
Other Geospatial Yukon–Kuskokwim Delta