Thursday, January 28, 2021

The role of genetics in kakapo recovery

TitleThe role of genetics in kakapo recovery
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2006
AuthorsRobertson, BC
Type of Articlepaper
Keywordsgenetic diversity, genetic similarity, molecular ageing, molecular sexing, paternity, Strigops habroptilus

A growing literature indicates that genetic factors have a significant impact on the persistence of populations and hence play an important role in species recovery. Here, I review the role of genetic research in the recovery program of the critically endangered kakapo (Strigops habroptilus). By using three examples of how genetics has guided kakapo managers (molecular sexing, quantification of genetic diversity and confirmation of paternity from known matings), I highlight the important contribution genetics has made to kakapo recovery. I also explore three new avenues of research (genetic diversity at genes for disease resistance, molecular ageing, and genetic similarity and hatching success), all of which may have important implications for future conservation management of kakapo. As such, this review demonstrates that genetic research is an integral part of kakapo recovery.

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