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Data from: Patterns of pollen dispersal in a small population of the Canarian endemic palm (Phoenix canariensis)

Cite this dataset

Saro, Isabel; Robledo-Arnuncio, Juan J.; González-Pérez, Miguel A.; Sosa, Pedro A. (2014). Data from: Patterns of pollen dispersal in a small population of the Canarian endemic palm (Phoenix canariensis) [Dataset]. Dryad.


The genetic diversity of small populations is greatly influenced by local dispersal patterns and genetic connectivity among populations, with pollen dispersal being the major component of gene flow in many plants species. Patterns of pollen dispersal, mating system parameters and spatial genetic structure were investigated in a small isolated population of the emblematic palm Phoenix canariensis in Gran Canaria island (Canary Islands). All adult palms present in the study population (n=182), as well as 616 seeds collected from 22 female palms, were mapped and genotyped at 8 microsatellite loci. Mating system analysis revealed an average of 5.8 effective pollen donors (Nep) per female. There was strong variation in correlated paternity rates across maternal progenies (ranging from null to 0.9) that could not be explained by the location and density of local males around focal females. Paternity analysis revealed a mean effective pollen dispersal distance of ~71 m, with ~70% of effective pollen originating from a distance of <75 m, and 90% from <200 m. A spatially explicit mating model indicated a leptokurtic pollen dispersal kernel, significant pollen immigration (12%) from external palm groves and a directional pollen dispersal pattern that seems consistent with local altitudinal air movement. No evidence of inbreeding or genetic diversity erosion was found, but spatial genetic structure was detected in the small palm population. Overall, the results suggest substantial pollen dispersal over the studied population, genetic connectivity among different palm groves and some resilience to neutral genetic erosion and subsequently to fragmentation.

Usage notes


Canary Islands
Gran Canaria island
Acusa Verde (27º 59.85’ N/ 15º 41.33’ O)