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Genetic differentiation in Scottish populations of the pine beauty moth, Panolis flammea (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae)

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  09 March 2007

A.J. Lowe
Centre for Ecology and Hydrology, Edinburgh Research Station, Bush Estate, Penicuik, Midlothian, EH26 0QB, Scotland, UK School of Integrative Biology, University of Queensland, Brisbane Qld 4072, Australia
B.J. Hicks*
College of the North Atlantic, 4 Pike's Lane, Carbonear, Newfoundland, Canada, A1Y 1A7
K. Worley
Institute of Evolutionary Biology, School of Biology, The Kings Buildings, West Mains Road, Edinburgh, EH9 3JT, Scotland, UK
R.A. Ennos
Institute of Evolutionary Biology, School of Biology, The Kings Buildings, West Mains Road, Edinburgh, EH9 3JT, Scotland, UK
J.D. Morman
Institute of Evolutionary Biology, School of Biology, The Kings Buildings, West Mains Road, Edinburgh, EH9 3JT, Scotland, UK
G. Stone
Institute of Evolutionary Biology, School of Biology, The Kings Buildings, West Mains Road, Edinburgh, EH9 3JT, Scotland, UK
A.D. Watt
Centre for Ecology and Hydrology, Banchory Research Station, Hill of Brathens, Banchory, AB31 4BY, Scotland, UK
*Fax: +01 709 596 2688 E-mail:


Pine beauty moth, Panolis flammea (Denis & Schiffermüller), is a recent but persistent pest of lodgepole pine plantations in Scotland, but exists naturally at low levels within remnants and plantations of Scots pine. To test whether separate host races occur in lodgepole and Scots pine stands and to examine colonization dynamics, allozyme, randomly amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) and mitochondrial variation were screened within a range of Scottish samples. RAPD analysis indicated limited long distance dispersal (FST = 0.099), and significant isolation by distance (P < 0.05); but that colonization between more proximate populations was often variable, from extensive to limited exchange. When compared with material from Germany, Scottish samples were found to be more diverse and significantly differentiated for all markers. For mtDNA, two highly divergent groups of haplotypes were evident, one group contained both German and Scottish samples and the other was predominantly Scottish. No genetic differentiation was evident between P. flammea populations sampled from different hosts, and no diversity bottleneck was observed in the lodgepole group. Indeed, lodgepole stands appear to have been colonized on multiple occasions from Scots pine sources and neighbouring populations on different hosts are close to panmixia.

Research Article
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2005

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