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Population Genetics of New Zealand Pagrus auratus and Genetic Variation of an Aquaculture Broodstock

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posted on 13.11.2021, 21:53 by Ashton, David T.

Fisheries and aquaculture are major contributors of nutrition and animal protein worldwide. Understanding the genetic variation and differentiation within and between wild populations is important for both sustainable fisheries management and selection of aquaculture broodstock. This study determined the genetic variation and differentiation of New Zealand Pagrus auratus based on mitochondrial DNA control region sequencing and microsatellite DNA genotyping. Low but significant differentiation was measured between several sample sites, but otherwise the population was genetically panmictic. The M-ratio test and Fu’s Fs statistics indicate that there may have been historical bottlenecks at all sample sites and a more recent bottleneck in the Tasman Bay. Two South Island sites were identified that had not been through recent bottlenecks and were not significantly differentiated from the Tasman Bay, which may provide a source of gene flow to aid its genetic recovery. Comparison of the broodstock and wild genetic variation indicate that the broodstock represented most of the genetic variation found in high frequency in wild populations, but further wild-caught individuals may be needed, based on the criteria used in several previous studies. Simulations indicate that adding approximately 20 and 48 wild-caught individuals from multiple populations to the current broodstock was needed to represent all genetic variation above a target frequency of 0.05 in the Tasman Bay and all sample sites, respectively.


Copyright Date


Date of Award



Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington

Rights License

Author Retains Copyright

Degree Discipline

Cell and Molecular Bioscience

Degree Grantor

Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington

Degree Level


Degree Name

Master of Science

ANZSRC Type Of Activity code

830102 Aquaculture Fin Fish (excl. Tuna)

Victoria University of Wellington Item Type

Awarded Research Masters Thesis



Victoria University of Wellington School

School of Biological Sciences


Ritchie, Peter