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Type of publication: Diploma Thesis
Type of document:

Year: 2013

Authors: Lipp, Lukas

Title: Monitoring of the Mongolian Wild Camel (Camelus ferus) Population using Mitochondrial Markers for Non-invasively Collected Hair Samples.

Source: Diplomarbeit, Vet. Med. Univ. Wien, pp. 49.


Advisor(s):

Walzer Christian

Reviewer(s):
Wallner Barbara

Vetmed Research Units:
Research Institute of Wildlife Ecology


Graduation date: 29.04.13


Abstract:
Current surveillance programmes indicate a continuous decrease of individuals in the Mongolian wild camel population (Camelus ferus). Lately, hybridization has been considered to be a possible cause for fitness-reduction in wildlife populations. Hence, I analysed 39 camel hair samples, collected in the Great Gobi Strictly Protected Area “A”. In order to get further genetic information on the remaining wild camel population in Mongolia I sequenced an 804bp fragment of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA). I obtained 29 sequences and included them in a data set of altogether 168 samples, consisting of wild and domestic Bactrian camels, for phylogenetic analysis. As a surprising result we found five domestic mtDNA sequences in the core zone of the protected area. As possible reasons we opposed the presence of real maternal hybrids to the occurrence of feral domestic camels. Either way, there is need for further conservation efforts in order to prevent both species from cross-breeding. An analysis of mitochondrial genetic diversity in the Mongolian wild camel population gave signs of a recent decline of population size and loss of genetic variability. Finally, the described method of mtDNA extraction and analysis has proven to be a useful tool for genetic monitoring and the rapid screening of a wild population for maternal hybridization with non-invasively collected hair samples.


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