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The researchers have reconstructed the invasion routes followed by the red swamp crayfish during its human-driven expansion based on the analysis of a mitochondrial gene (COI), which was sequenced from 1,412 crayfishes from 122 populations across the Northern Hemisphere.
The article describes how different invasion scenarios have produced different genetic patterns among invasive populations. "For example, in the US there are two main invasion routes: westward and eastward from the native area. The invasive populations in the west are genetically more diverse, because they have received more introductions, which probably involved more specimens of crayfish, starting in the 1920s," explains Francisco J. Oficialdegui, CSIC researcher at the Doñana Biological Station.
Results - US - California - Area - Source
The genetic results show that western US (California), itself an invaded area, was the source of the crayfish populations established in Hawaii and a probable source of the crayfish introduced to Japan, and from there to China, in the late 1920s. The low genetic diversity of all red swamp crayfish populations studied in Asia supports documentary evidence that a small group of some 20 individuals may have been the origin of the Japanese and...
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