Development of polymorphic tetranucleotide microsatellites for pinyon jays (Gymnorhinus cyanocephalus)
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The pinyon jay (Gymnorhinus cyanocephalus) is a primary seed disperser of pinyon pines (Pinus edulis and P. monophylla). Both the pinyon jay and the pinyon pines are experiencing significant decline. While the pinyon jay is a species of management value and conservation concern, little is known about its fecundity, among-flock dispersal, and population differentiation. We initiated genetic studies in pinyon jays using a hybridization enrichment technique to isolate seven polymorphic microsatellite repeats (AAAG and GATA) from the pinyon jay genome. A locus from the Mexican jay (Aphelocoma ultramarina) that amplifies robustly in pinyon jays is also reported. These eight loci revealed moderate to high diversity in an Arizona population of pinyon jays (4–36 alleles and H O 0.42–0.90). As in other species, tetranucleotide repeats produced easily resolved amplification products.
KeywordsGymnorhinuscyanocephalus Pinyon pine Conservation Hybridization enrichment Tetranucleotide
We thank Dr. Shou-Hsien Li for advice on hybridization enrichment. Critical support for specimen collection and data analysis was provided by members of the Northern Arizona University Avian Cognition Laboratory and Keim Genetics Lab. Financial support was provided by National Science Foundation Grant #9982883 and Northern Arizona University. All field procedures were approved by the Northern Arizona University Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee. Additional information about permits and protocols is available upon request.
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