By Douglas Fox
April-June 2008 / Vol. 9 No. 2
- The term “hybrid vigor” is often used in relation to domesticated plants and animals. What does this term mean? Does this phenomenon have a role to play in conservation as well?
- How does the U.S. Endangered Species Act treat the issue of hybrids and hybridization? Do you agree or disagree with this treatment?
- The red wolf debate is often cited as an example of the potential negative and diluting effects of hybridization. And yet hybridization between Florida panthers and the Texas sub-species of panthers has been credited with the recent recovery of the panther in Florida http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/08/050821232913.htm. What is responsible for these different interpretations?
Websites for Further Information
- The Red Wolf Recovery Project: http://www.fws.gov/redwolf/
- Defenders of Wildlife: www.defenders.org
- Florida panther net: http://www.panther.state.fl.us/
Hybridization and Conservation in the News
- Crossbreeding to Save Species and Create New Ones (New York Times, July 9, 2002): http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9B01E5D91630F93AA35754C0A9649C8B63&sec=&spon=&partner=permalink&exprod=permalink
- Strands of Undesirable DNA Roam with Buffalo (New York Times, January 9, 2007): http://www.nytimes.com/2007/01/09/science/09bison.html?ex=157680000&en=b6ed41bd60551135&ei=5124&partner=permalink&exprod=permalink
- Fitness Of Florida Panthers Improved By Limited Breeding With Texas Animals, Study Suggests (ScienceDaily, August 23, 2005): http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/08/050821232913.htm
Peer-reviewed Literature (in addition to the citations listed in the article)
- Campton, D.E, L.R. Kaeding. 2005. Westslope Cutthroat Trout, Hybridization, and the U.S. Endangered Species Act. Conservation Biology 2005 19: 1323-1325.
- Levin, D.A., J. Francisco-Ortega, R.K. Jansen. 1996. Hybridization and the Extinction of Rare Plant Species. Conservation Biology 10: 10-16.
- R.J. Fredrickson, P.W. Hedrick. 2006. Dynamics of Hybridization and Introgression in Red Wolves and Coyotes. Conservation Biology 20:4 1272-1283.
- Reich, D.E., R.K. Wayne, and D.B. Goldstein. 1999. Genetic evidence for a recent origin by hybridization of red wolves. Molecular Ecology 8: 139 – 144.
- Salzburger, W., S. Baric, C. Sturmbauer. 2002. Speciation via introgressive hybridization in East African cichlids? Mol Ecol. 11: 619-25.
- Wilson, P.J., S. Grewal, I.D. Lawford, J.N.M. Heal, A.G. Granacki, D. Pennock, J.B. Theberge, M.T. Theberge, D.R. Voigt, W. Waddell, R.E.Chambers, P.C. Paquet, G. Goulet, D. Cluff, and B.N. White. 2000. DNA profiles of the eastern Canadian wolf and the red wolf provide evidence for a common evolutionary history independent of the gray wolf. Canadian Journal of Zoology 78: 2156 – 2166.
- Endangered species
- Environmental change