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Data from: Introduced Scotch broom (Cytisus scoparius) invades the genome of native populations in vulnerable heathland habitats

Citation

Rostgaard Nielsen, Lene et al. (2016), Data from: Introduced Scotch broom (Cytisus scoparius) invades the genome of native populations in vulnerable heathland habitats, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.p49q0

Abstract

Cytisus scoparius is a global invasive species that affects local flora and fauna at the intercontinental level. Its natural distribution spans across Europe, but seeds have also been moved among countries, mixing plants of native and non-native genetic origins. Hybridization between the introduced and native gene pool is likely to threaten both the native gene pool and the local flora. In this study, we address the potential threat of invasive C. scoparius to local gene pools in vulnerable heathlands. We used nuclear single nucleotide polymorphic (SNP) and simple sequence repeat (SSR) markers together with plastid SSR and indel markers to investigate the level and direction of gene flow between invasive and native heathland C. scoparius. Analyses of population structures confirmed the presence of two gene pools: one native and the other invasive. The nuclear genome of the native types was highly introgressed with the invasive genome, and we observed advanced-generation hybrids, suggesting that hybridization has been occurring for several generations. There is asymmetrical gene flow from the invasive to the native gene pool, which can be attributed to higher fecundity in the invasive individuals, measured by the number of flowers and seed pods. Strong spatial genetic structure in plastid markers and weaker structure in nuclear markers suggest that seeds spread over relatively short distances and that gene flow over longer distances is mainly facilitated by pollen dispersal. We further show that the growth habits of heathland plants become more vigorous with increased introgression from the invaders. Implications of the findings are discussed in relation to future management of invading C. scoparius.

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Location

Denmark