We studied the structure of genetic variation (at both ramet- and genet-level) and clonal diversity within and among populations in the four closely related arctic clonal sedges Carex bigelowii, C. ensifolia, C. lugens and C. starts by use of allozyme markers. Compared to other sedges and arctic plants, the studied taxa all had high levels of genetic variation, both within populations and taxa. These taxa contained most of the total gene diversity (H-T) within populations and a small part of the diversity among populations (G(ST) ranged 0.05-0.43). Carex bigelowii had genetic variation (H-S = 0.173, mean for populations) at a comparable level to other outbreeding arctic plants and to other widespread, rhizomatous and mainly outbreeding Carex species. In contrast, C. ensifolia (H-S = 0.335), C. lugens (H-S = 0.339) and C. stans (H-S = 0.294) had within-population variations that were higher than in most other studied Carex species and for arctic plants in general. Genetic variation was not related to any tested environmental variable, but it was lower in areas deglaciated only 10 000 years BP compared to areas deglaciated 60 000 years BP or not glaciated at all during the Weichselian. All the populations were multiclonal, except for two populations of C. starts that were monoclonal. In contrast to genetic variation, clonal diversity decreased with latitude and did not differ between areas with different times of deglaciation. In accordance with previous studies, C. bigelowii and C. lugens were found to be outbreeding, while C. ensifolia and C. stans had mixed mating systems.
Bibliografisk informationThe information about affiliations in this record was updated in December 2015.
The record was previously connected to the following departments: Theoretical ecology (Closed 2011) (011006011)