Lack of genetic structure in Pantala flavescens among Central and South American localities (Odonata: Libellulidae)
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Pantala flavescens is the most widespread odonate on Earth, absent only in Antarctica and parts of Europe. A recent study performed with sequences of mtDNA suggested the presence of one panmictic population of the species at a global scale. However, combining mitochondrial and nuclear markers could offer more information about the genetic variability of populations. Here, we sequenced a fragment of the COI gene and genotyped eight microsatellite loci in order to analyze the population genetic structure and diversity in individuals collected in Central America (two sites in Costa Rica, separated by 147 km) and two localities in South America (one site in Chile and one in Peru, separated by 52 km). The global F-ST estimated from COI and microsatellite data showed no evidence of genetic structure. Furthermore, an Analysis of Molecular Variance (AMOVA) performed with both COI and microsatellites also showed no evidence of genetic structure despite the >5 000 km of distance between both geographic regions. These results suggest an extraordinary movement of P. flavescens along the American continent, thus corroborating the previous study conducted on this species.
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