Macquarie University
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Testing spatial models of genetic connectivity for European Raja clavata and Sepia officinalis in response to seascape resistance

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posted on 2022-03-29, 00:50 authored by Holly Luland
Predicting influences of habitat distribution and heterogeneity on species gene flow is now widely acknowledged as a key step in optimising effective marine management practices. Commonly applied models of geographic influence such as isolation by distance (IBD) and isolation by oceanic distances (IBO), though often effective at predicting the genetic connectivity of pelagic species, fail to incorporate potential influences of habitat by single corridor or multiple corridors on the genetic and movement connectivity for non-pelagic and demersal-obligate species, as found on continental shelf systems. Least-cost path (LCP) and isolation by resistance (IBR); a novel approach based on Circuit Theory principles of random walk, counters these limitations by integrating the effects of single and multiple pathways on connectivity by distances taken between locations over habitat shapes of assigned resistances optimised a priori. Applications of these models have been largely restricted to terrestrial systems despite the potential for improving predictions of connectivity for marine habitat specialists. Using available genetic, distribution and habitat data from two co-distributed and predominately demersal species Sepia officinalis and Raja clavata, we were able to identify that IBO explained the connectivity of R. clavata while S. officinalis connectivity was influenced by IBR and the LCP by habitat configuration. With this study we provide a simple framework for developing tests of genetic connectivity that indicate some of the processes underpinning patterns of genetic structure.


Alternative Title

Connectivity models for R. clavata & S. officinalis.


Spine title: Connectivity models for R. clavata & S. officinalis. Bibliography: leaves 25-29 Thesis by publication.

Awarding Institution

Macquarie University

Degree Type

Thesis MRes


MRes, Macquarie University, Faculty of Science and Engineering, Department of BIological Sciences

Department, Centre or School

Department of Biological Sciences

Year of Award


Principal Supervisor

Adam Stow


Copyright Holly Luland 2014. Copyright disclaimer:






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