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Abstract Detail

Bryology and Lichenology

Farah, Ugbad [1].

Environmental and Geographic Differentiation in Syntrichia caninervis.

Syntrichia is one of the most ecologically dominant groups of mosses across arid habitats in western North America, and is frequently associated with biological soil crust (biocrust) communities in the Mojave and Colorado Deserts. Within biocrust communities, the species S. caninervis serves as an excellent model system to investigate how environmental stress influences life history strategies and diversification. Previous studies have examined genetic diversity in S. caninervis populations within a limited ecological and spatial scale. This study investigates the potential for genetic differentiation of populations of S. caninervis with both environmental and physical/geographic distance. At two geographically distant sites (Sheep Mts, NV, and Colorado Plateau, UT), we sampled three S. caninervis populations along an elevation gradient (Low / Mid / High) to capture differing levels of overall environmental stress at each (geographically proximate) site. These samples, collected along well-characterized ecological gradients, and a set of S. caninervis population samples representative of the species’ geographic range in western North America, will be genotyped through RAD sequencing. These genotype data will be analyzed to determine whether genetic distance corresponds to either ecological or geographic distance between collection localities. If diversity is influenced strongly by physiological specialization within this species, we anticipate that S. caninervis sampled in high stress environments, irrespective of geographic distances, will be more similar than mosses that are in environments of low stress but physically closer.

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1 - California State University, Los Angeles, Geosciences & Environment, 5151 State University Dr, Los Angeles, CA, 90032, United States

syntrichia caninervis
Colorado Plateau
sonoran desert.

Presentation Type: Oral Paper
Session: BRY1, Bryology
Location: Tucson G/Starr Pass
Date: Tuesday, July 30th, 2019
Time: 10:15 AM
Number: BRY1007
Abstract ID:382
Candidate for Awards:A. J. Sharp Award

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