Natalia Sukhikh, Petr Garibian, Elena Chertoprud

Resettlement of Eurytemora velox (Crustacea: Copepoda) in Europe, the Urals and Western Siberia

  • Nature and Landscape Conservation
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Ecological Modeling
  • Ecology

The recent distribution of the Ponto-Caspian calanoid copepod, Eurytemora velox, in Western and Eastern Europe has been well-documented; however, there are no studies on the genetic diversity of the recently discovered Western Siberian species population. To contribute towards filling this gap, genetic diversity and distribution were investigated for E. velox collected in the Urals and Western Siberia of the Russian Federation to compare with the European populations. In this study, 44 specimens were dissected for the morphological studies, and 22 specimens of E. velox from different geographical points were analyzed for mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase I (CO1), nuclear ITS1-ITS2 (nITS) and nuclear ribosomal RNA (18SrRNA) gene fragments. Analysis of the CO1 gene region showed that the studied populations from the Urals and Western Siberia differ significantly from European ones and represent a separate genetic line. However, the nuclear nITS and 18SrRNA genes, as well as the results of morphological analysis, did not show such isolation of the Trans-Ural populations from those in Europe. As in many studies on E. velox, we found atypical structural features of the fifth prosomal leg among females in the Ob Bay. Their share was 36% of the number of studied individuals. The CO1 shows that the divergence of genetic lines occurred approximately in the Middle Pleistocene, and the species itself is Paleogene–Neogene by origin. Based on these data, a different scenario of E. velox distribution or possible refuge survival is discussed.

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