SREL Reprint #2040

 

 

 

 

GENETIC CORRELATES OF FITNESS IN THE GREEN TREEFROG, HYLA CINEREA

SUSAN McALPINE1,3 AND MICHAEL H. SMITH 1,2

1Savannah River Ecology Laboratory, Drawer E, Aiken, SC 29802, USA and
Department of Zoology, University of Georgia, Athens, GA 30602, USA
2Department of Genetics, Institute of Ecology, and School of Forest Resources,
University of Georgia, Athens, GA 30602, USA
3PRESENT ADDRESS: The Nature Conservancy, 315 Alexander Street,
Rochester, NY 14604, USA

ABSTRACT: Effects of an individual's genotype on its fitness may vary with environmental conditions or across time. Green treefrogs, Hyla cinerea, were collected from a single pond for three consecutive summers (1989-1991) and identified as belonging to one of four groups: calling males, mated males, mated females, and juvenile metamorphs. We used eight polymorphic loci to examine differences among groups and across years. Heterozygosity at the isocitrate dehydrogenase-2 (IDH-2) locus was associated with enhanced overwinter survival of juveniles and male mating success; however, the relationship was not consistent across time. The association at the IDH-2 locus may be weak or the result of an interaction and, therefore, seen only under certain conditions. A shift in allelic and genotypic frequencies corresponded to changes in heterozygosity. Although the exact cause of the association is not known, this study illustrates the temporally dynamic nature of the genetics of natural populations. Multilocus heterozygosity did not appear to be a good indicator of survival or mating success in H. cinerea.

Key words: Heterozygosity; Temporal variation; Mating success; Survival; Anura; Hyla cinerea

SREL Reprint #2040

McAlpine, S. and M.H. Smith. 1995. Genetic correlates of fitness in the green treefrog, Hyla cinerea. Herpetologica 51:393-400.

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