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Data from: Genetic Variation in Plethodon cinereus and Plethodon hubrichti from in and Around a Contact Zone

Citation

Page, Robert et al. (2021), Data from: Genetic Variation in Plethodon cinereus and Plethodon hubrichti from in and Around a Contact Zone, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.8gtht76mg

Abstract

Climate change poses several challenges to biological communities including changes in the frequency of encounters between closely related congeners as a result of range shifts. When climate change leads to increased hybridization, hybrid dysfunction or genetic swamping may increase extinction risk—particularly in range-restricted species with low vagility. The Peaks of Otter Salamander, Plethodon hubrichti, is a fully terrestrial woodland salamander that is restricted to ~ 18 km of ridgeline in the mountains of southwestern Virginia, and its range is surrounded by the abundant and widespread Eastern Red-backed Salamander, Plethodon cinereus. In order to determine whether these two species are hybridizing and how their range limits may be shifting, we assessed variation at eight microsatellite loci and a 1008 bp region of Cytochrome B in both species at allopatric reference sites and within a contact zone. Our results show that hybridization between P. hubrichti and P. cinereus either does not occur or is very rare. However, we find that diversity and differentiation are substantially higher in the mountaintop endemic P. hubrichti than in the widespread P. cinereus, despite similar movement ability for the two species as assessed by a homing experiment. Furthermore, estimation of divergence times between reference and contact zone populations via approximate Bayesian computation is consistent with the idea that P. cinereus has expanded into the range of P. hubrichti. Given the apparent recent colonization of the contact zone by P. cinereus, future monitoring of P. cinereus range limits should be a priority for the management of P. hubrichti populations.

Methods

Microsatellite Data

Eight microsatellite loci were amplified using PCR and reactions were screened for success using agarose gel electrophoresis. Successful reactions were subjected to capillary electrophoresis using an ABI 3730 and GENESCAN LIZ 600 as an internal sizing standard. Standard curve fitting, genotype scoring, and binning were performed using the microsatellite plugin for GENEIOUS, version R9 (Biomatters).

Homing Data

Please see the associated ReadMe file.

Usage Notes

Microsatellite Data

Missing genotypes are denoted with '0'. Genotypes are given as binned fragment lengths in two column per locus format. Metadata include individual identifiers (Animal_ID), species (Pc = Plethodon cinereus, Ph = Plethodon hubrichti), whether individuals were collected specifically for having unusal morphology (yes/no), and the population grouping used in downstream analyses (PcCZ = P. cinereus contact zone, THRID = Thunder Ridge (P. cinereus reference site), FF = Floyd's Field (P. hubrichti reference site), PhCZ = P. hubrichti contact zone). 

Homing Data

Please see the associated ReadMe file.