Data from: Recolonization after habitat restoration leads to decreased genetic variation in populations of a terrestrial orchid
Vandepitte, Katrien et al. (2012), Data from: Recolonization after habitat restoration leads to decreased genetic variation in populations of a terrestrial orchid, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.qk770
Colonization is crucial to habitat restoration projects that rely on the spontaneous regeneration of the original vegetation. However, as a previously declining plant species spreads again, the likelihood of founder effects increases through recurrent population founding and associated serial bottlenecks. We related AFLP genetic variation and fitness of all extant populations of the outcrossing terrestrial orchid Dactylorhiza incarnata in an isolated coastal dune complex to colonization history. Around 1970, D. incarnata suffered a severe bottleneck yet eventually persisted and gradually spread throughout the spatially segregated dune slacks, aided by the restoration of an open vegetation. Genetic assignment demonstrated dispersal to vacant sites from few nearby extant populations and very limited inflow from outside the spatially isolated reserve. Results further indicated that recurrent founding from few local sources resulted in the loss of genetic diversity and promoted genetic divergence (FST=0.35) among populations, but did not influence population fitness. The few local sources initially available and the little gene inflow from outside the study reserve, as a consequence of respectively habitat degradation and spatial isolation, possibly magnified the genetic effects of recurrent population founding.
Belgium-France coastal border