Ecology, Environment and Conservation Paper

Special Issue-2014; Page No.(185-191)

GENETIC STRUCTURE AND CONNECTIVITY OF GONIOPORA POPULATION IN SAVU SEA MARINE NATIONAL PARK, EAST NUSA TENGGARA INDONESIA

Jotham S.R. Ninef, Yohanes Merryanto, Maria Rio. Naguit and Janet S. Estacion

Abstract

The study of genetic connectivity of coral population in Savu Sea Marine National Park was conducted to determine the genetic connectivity among coral populations in the Savu Sea National Marine Park (NMP) and the surrounding areas, determine important areas for coral reefs conservation in the Savu Sea National Marine Park and build networking among these areas. It also aimed to provide scientific data and information for management and zoning design of Savu Sea Marine National Park. Populations of Goniopora from the reefs of Rote, Sabu, Pura, and Batang Islands were sampled. Genomic DNA was extracted from approximately 1 mm-2 polyp of Goniopora. DNA sequences were aligned and edited using the Geneious v.3. Variation among and within collection sites was determined using the Analysis of Molecular variance (AMOVA) Significance of the fixation indices was determined using a non-parametric approach. A high level of genetic structuring in Savu Sea indicated restricted gene flow between the populations. Pairwise comparison of the values showed significantly high genetic distances only in Rote-Sabu Island and Rote - Pura Island. The rest of the comparison were not significant, indicating genetic similarities among the populations of Batang and Pura, Batang and Rote, Batang and Sabu, Pura and Sabu. A neighbor-joining tree showed the clustering of Pura Island and Batang in the Alor Archipelago. The genetic structure of Goniopora columna in the Savu Sea indicated some level of connectivity which has conservation management implications: no-take areas at strategic locations are particularly important as they may serve as larval source and sink regions. Further research considering more samples and sites, local oceanographic data and more species with a variety of reproductive modes is needed.

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