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Welcome to the technical sessions schedule for the 2015 SEAFWA Annual Meeting.

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Tuesday, November 3 • 11:20am - 11:40am
Black Bear Genetic Diversity and Health in Alabama

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John Draper, Auburn University; Lisette Waits, University of Idaho; Todd Steury, Auburn University

Black bears (Ursus americanus) have been restricted to a very small population in the Mobile River Basin (MRB) since the 1920's. Recently bears have been immigrating back in to the north eastern corner of the state and establishing a new breading population in and around Little River National Preserve. Both of these populations are very small with minimal if any genetic exchange with other populations. The MRB population has extremely low genetic diversity with an observed heterozygosity of Ho=0.287, effective heterozygosity of He = 0.217 and an average number of alleles per locus of Na= 2.125. All indicating isolation with little to no genetic exchange with an outside population. The north eastern population however has much higher genetic diversity with, Ho = 0.569, He = 0.484 and Na = 4. The relative youth of this newly established breeding population makes predicting future genetic health more difficult. There has not been sufficient time since colonization to allow for drift to begin to take effect, or for the level of continuing immigration to be observed or quantified. However baselines for this population have now been established and the existence of a healthy breeding population of black bears has been confirmed in north eastern Alabama.

Tuesday November 3, 2015 11:20am - 11:40am EST
Ballroom Salon B

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