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Low-coverage whole-genome sequencing for highly accurate population assignment: Mapping migratory connectivity in the American redstart (Setophaga ruticilla)
  • +12
  • Matthew DeSaix,
  • Eric Anderson,
  • Christen Bossu,
  • Christine Rayne,
  • Teia Schweizer,
  • Nicholas Bayly,
  • Darshan Narang,
  • Julie Hagelin,
  • H. Lisle Gibbs,
  • James Saracco,
  • Thomas W Sherry,
  • Michael Webster,
  • Thomas Smith,
  • Peter Marra,
  • Kristen Ruegg
Matthew DeSaix
Colorado State University

Corresponding Author:[email protected]

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Eric Anderson
NOAA Fisheries Southwest Fisheries Science Center Fisheries Ecology Division
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Christen Bossu
Colorado State University
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Christine Rayne
Colorado State University Department of Biology
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Teia Schweizer
Colorado State University
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Nicholas Bayly
SELVA Investigación para la conservación en el Neotropico
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Darshan Narang
Trinidad and Tobago Field Naturalists’ Club
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Julie Hagelin
State of Alaska Department of Fish and Game
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H. Lisle Gibbs
The Ohio State University
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James Saracco
The Institute for Bird Populations
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Thomas W Sherry
Tulane University
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Michael Webster
Cornell Lab of Ornithology
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Thomas Smith
UCLA Center for Tropical Research
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Peter Marra
Georgetown University
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Kristen Ruegg
Colorado State University
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Understanding the geographic linkages among populations across the annual cycle is an essential component for understanding the ecology and evolution of migratory species and for facilitating their effective conservation. While genetic markers have been widely applied to describe migratory connections, the rapid development of new sequencing methods, such as low-coverage whole genome sequencing (lcWGS), provides new opportunities for improved estimates of migratory connectivity. Here, we use lcWGS to identify fine-scale population structure in a widespread songbird, the American Redstart (Setophaga ruticilla), and accurately assign individuals to genetically distinct breeding populations. Assignment of individuals from the nonbreeding range reveals population-specific patterns of varying migratory connectivity. By combining migratory connectivity results with demographic analysis of population abundance and trends, we consider full annual cycle conservation strategies for preserving numbers of individuals and genetic diversity. Notably, we highlight the importance of the Northern Temperate-Greater Antilles migratory population as containing the largest proportion of individuals in the species. Finally, we highlight valuable considerations for other population assignment studies aimed at using lcWGS. Our results have broad implications for improving our understanding of the ecology and evolution of migratory species through conservation genomics approaches.
14 Jun 2023Submitted to Molecular Ecology
16 Jun 2023Submission Checks Completed
16 Jun 2023Assigned to Editor
16 Jun 2023Review(s) Completed, Editorial Evaluation Pending
27 Jun 2023Reviewer(s) Assigned
16 Aug 2023Editorial Decision: Revise Minor
25 Aug 20231st Revision Received
28 Aug 2023Submission Checks Completed
28 Aug 2023Assigned to Editor
28 Aug 2023Review(s) Completed, Editorial Evaluation Pending
04 Sep 2023Editorial Decision: Accept