Alaska EPSCoR Data Portal
Using Genetic Markers to Determine Population Status and Management Strategies of Migratory Birds, Terrestrial and Marine Mammals, and Plants
Identifying genetic markers for various species in order to develop conservation strategies.
Alaska provides critical breeding, molting and wintering habitat for migratory and resident birds, hosts numerous resident and migratory or nomadic populations of terrestrial and marine mammals, and provides habitat for several resident amphibian species. Populations of nomadic and resident mammals, some shared with neighboring Canadian provinces, maybe vulnerable to activities associated with habitat change or loss due to natural or anthropogenic forcings.
A number of vertebrate and plant species, including those actively managed by state, federal, native and international agencies, are declining in number and may be at increased risk if they are not bolstered by exchange from other populations. Clarification of links among breeding, molting, staging and wintering habitats of migratory avian and mammalian and amphibian species will aid in determining appropriate management and conservation strategies.
Molecular genetic markers can augment other field and laboratory methodologies to characterize global breeding populations and address questions regarding the historical and contemporary interrelatedness of wildlife and plant populations. These markers can also directly and indirectly assess the genetic response of wildlife and plant communities and populations to natural and anthropogenic changes.
Publications: Lanctot R, Goatcher B, Scribner K, Talbot S, Pierson B, Esler D, Zwiefelhofer D. 1999. Harlequin Duck Recovery From the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill: a Population Genetics perspective. The Auk 116(3): 781-791.
Data and Resources